Options for Virginians: What do schools look for? 

From "Medical School Admission Requirements (MSAR"), a publication of the AAMC : "As an applicant embarks on the path toward a medical career, consideration of the type of medical school is important. Some medical school curricula emphasize the education and training of primary care physicians, ..Some medical schools emphasize the education and training of physicians who will serve the needs of rural patients. Still other schools emphasize the acquisition of research skills,...and academic medicine."

Similar diversity in programs will be found in the other health careers. Information is available on the internet and through other means about the programs you are considering. Do some "homework" in selecting the schools to which you apply - the "shotgun" approach is often unsuccessful. Find out about typical applicant pools, acceptance rates, etc; some programs are more "competitive" than others. But also look into how well that program's graduates do on board exams ("pass rates"); after all, you want your investment in them to be worthwhile!

The Director of Pre-health Programs (DPP) can offer advice and resources to help you select programs to consider applying to.