Alesandra Mendoza, Class of 2021
Undergraduate school attended and major
University of Notre Dame (Class of 2014); Political Science and Pre-health Studies
Why did you choose the University of Minnesota Medical School and what do you like about it?
I chose the University of Minnesota for medical school for a number of reasons. First and foremost, the academic reputation and early clinical exposures of the U spoke for itself - I knew that I would receive an exceptional medical education that would prepare me well for residency and beyond. As the only med school in town, we have the opportunity to do our clinical learning in a variety of hospital settings - whether at the county hospital, the VA, our academic center here on campus, or a number of community hospitals in the area. We also have the opportunity to serve, partner with, and learn from diverse populations in the Twin Cities. Experiences like volunteering at the student-run Phillips Neighborhood Clinic or spending time in rural healthcare settings are valuable to our training and help us to become more culturally humble and compassionate physicians. Lastly, as an out-of-state student, the strong sense of community I felt on interview day was an important factor in my decision to attend the U for medical school.
Have you participated in any student organizations? If so, why did you select those organizations and what has been your experience?
Throughout medical school, I have served as co-president of our Student National Medical Association (SNMA) and have been a member of the Latino Medical Student Association (LMSA) and Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG) on campus. I chose to be part of SNMA because I am passionate about recruiting and supporting students from underrepresented groups in medicine, serving underserved communities through community outreach, and training future physicians to be culturally humble providers. LMSA is another great group that provides mentorship to similar groups of students, as well as supports activities celebrating diversity in the Latinx community. As a future internal medicine doctor, I joined IMIG to continue the great lunch lectures and annual residency program dinner hosted by the group so that my classmates and I can explore the possible career paths one can have in internal medicine.
Favorite activities to do in the Twin Cities?
Catching a musical or Minnesota Orchestra performance with my partner; going for a run around one of many lakes; meeting up with friends at a local brewery, ice cream shop, or coffee shop - it’s hard to choose only one favorite!