College Tips and Tricks

Most Recent Published Article

Here is a link to my most recent article for In-Training magazine:

Rural Appalachia: A Medical Mission in Our Own Backyard

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For STEM (Science, Tech, Engineering, Math) Majors Only – Scholarship Info!!!!

Here is a compiled list of scholarships for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) Majors. Some are engineering specific, so I tried my best to separate those; however, some may have “fallen through the cracks.” Good luck applying!!!

Oh, and please remember to ALWAYS check with you financial aid advisor at your desired school. He/she will have far more specific info for community and school scholarships. This list is mainly for non-specific field-related scholarships (except for the ones that obligate you to serve in GA for a specified amount of time). Thanks!

SMART Grant (Hey, I got this one!)

Obligates you to work in Engineering in GA upon graduation:

Women in STEM majors: (engineering only) (engineering only) (engineering only)

For Engineering Majors Only:

For General STEM Majors: (I did not research this one much, but it seemed helpful)




The following is a list I have comprised of FREE, yes FREE USMLE or COMLEX style questions. Some are directly from the test writers themselves, and others may require you to register for the free question banks (i.e. Kaplan). Either way, there is more than enough free samplings here for you to not register for anything and still have loads of good, legitimate study questions. Happy Studying!!!

Summer Studying Before Your First Semester of Med School

So, several of y’all have emailed me asking, “Hey Joey, what can I study the summer before entering medical school to get the edge?” My standard answer is what most medical schools want me to say, including mine, which is, “Don’t study anything because once you get in there you will have so much information thrown at you that it’ll be like ‘trying to drink water from a fire hose/hydrant’ and blah, blah, blah.”

But, I’ll go ahead and give you the real scoop, you gunner you. See, I know what you’re doing, and I respect that. I certainly didn’t write 4 publications, become a peer-reviewer for Lippincott, keep my grades up, form my company’s LLC, do research, and clock in more than 100 volunteer hours during my first year of medical school by NOT staying ahead of the game and NOT getting the edge on!

Time is of the essence, and for those of you who know me, you also know that I’ve got a wife in nurse practitioner school who works full-time, plus an 8-year old. Believe it or not, we still have time to spend together as a family – often! I only say all of this because I ALWAYS question the credibility of someone suggesting something for me before I apply to my life – especially something as important and vital as a change of study habit. So, I feel ya, and I wouldn’t steer you wrong.

Keep in mind that eBooks will be available for download pretty soon detailing how to do all of this in medical school and keep your head on straight! Remember, the motto is to “work smart, not hard.” Working hard only gets you tired and your brain can’t retain when it’s tired.

Anyway, the following is a list of items that almost all medical students (this includes osteopathic) must learn during their first semester (typically). I will release a second semester list before Christmas break. Remember to check out my other page “Medical Student Study Page” for links on the best resources I know of for studying much of the material. You may want to bookmark that page for future reference during you first and second years of medical school, as I will update it with material you will need up to taking the USMLE and COMLEX. Here’s the list, and good luck studying!

Learn all of the Cranial Nerves and whether they are motor, sensory, or both

– suggested mnemonics for this:

On Ooccasion Our Trusty Truck Acts Funny, Very Good Vehicle Any How”

olfactory, optic, occulomotor, trochlear, trigeminal, abducens, facial, vestibulocochlear (AKA auditory), glossopharyngeal, vagus, accessory, hypoglossal

Some Say Marry Money, But My Brother Says it’s Bad Business to Marry Money”

“S” stands for Sensory, “M” stands for Motor, “B” stands for Both

Learn the foramina of the skull and what nerve(s) exit each

Learn all the sutures of the skull

Learn all the lobes, fissures of the brain

Brachial Plexus – Draw it Out (trust me on this!!!)

Forearm Muscles and their Innervations

Sacral Plexus

Origin and Insertion points of:

– Upper arm muscles

– Forearm muscles

The Gait Cycle

All the steps (including the enzymes involved) of:

– Glycolysis (including the electron transport chain components)



– lipolysis

Familiarize yourself with the following:

– Cahill Cycle

– Cori Cycle

Learn the 5 GLUT transporters and where they are located

Learn all of the products of the pituitary gland and their releasing hormones:

– example: adenohypophysis produces Mi FLAT PiG (the “i” is for ignore) and the releasing hormones are CRH, GnRH, TRH, GHRH

– example: what two products does the neurohypophysis release?

-Extra TidBit: know that the RHs act on the “trophs” which release the products

– example: the CRH acts on the melanotrophs and corticotrophs to release MSH and ACTH, respectively

This should get you good for now. If you need any assistance, email me at:

Medical Students Study Page

The following are Fantastic Osteo-sites =)


Learn the Brachial Plexus in Five Minutes or Less – Thanks AMA!


Best way to remember arm muscle innervations…hands down!

Best histology sites I have found – bar none!

Blue Histo

Histo World


ANATOMY – You’ll love me for giving you these sites for anatomy. I like my  sugar with coffee and cream…just like the Beastie Boys do #intergalactica =)

All You Need to Know Regarding Insertion/Attachment Points:

        University of Michigan    


Anatomy Guy

Whole Brain Atlas

Digital Anatomist Interactive Atlases

Radiography Study


Great Pathology Sites

The pathology guy                                                                                  

Web Path

Top Ten Interview Questions


So, you’re applying to/for _________ (insert intimidating event here). What is it for you? Medical school, a graduate program, nursing school, an undergraduate school, a competitive scholarship, or your first job? Regardless of which one of these situations applies to you, there are a few questions you should be ready to answer. Before presenting these common questions to you, I will give you a little background on why I chose to write this article.

Many of you have taken me up on my mock interviews so far. I have thoroughly enjoyed doing these with you, and given the feedback, so have you. For those of you who have not yet had a mock interview with me, I ask a series of the ten most common questions I have either asked or been asked in interviews. I was fortunate enough to have served on several different committees in my past jobs and colleges where I assisted with interviewing people for jobs, scholarships, and/or admission.

I have had several interviews that included my being “grilled” by anywhere from 3 – 13 people staring intensely at me as if they were going to press some button that would make the floor drop from under me if I answered something incorrectly. I have also had one-on-one casual interviews that were much more conversational in nature than expected. I must say, I have come to absolutely love what is called the interview experience now.

      Each one is like a patient – it presents with its own distinctive qualities, so you cannot generalize them all as the same. Yet, they do share some commonalities among them, so you can prepare for them enough to feel somewhat comfortable with them at a base level – a groundwork from which to begin working.

      Without going in too much detail about facial expressions and body language (that’s what the ebook is for!), I will say this – you should know when the interview is done whether or not you have a chance in heck of getting in/hired/making it to the next stage in the process. But, make no mistake about it – these questions I am about to present are asked often, and they will trip you up if you are not prepared for them! Furthermore, you should be aware that your answers to these questions possess the power to make or break the whole interview! Without further ado, I now present to you my top 10 list.

       – Tell me about yourself

       – Why do you want to _________ (work here/become a doctor/become a nurse/etc.)

       – What are your strengths?

       – What are your weaknesses?

       – What would you do if you caught your friend cheating on a test?

      – Why should we choose you out of all the other applications?

       – Where do you see yourself in five – ten years?

       – What do you think this job/occupation/program entails?

       – Who has been an inspiration to you and why?

      – What questions do you have for us? (variant way of asking: Do you have any questions for us?)

Please be aware that ALL of these questions come with pitfalls and ways to absolutely knock them out of the park! However, that’s for another conversation. Good luck and happy hunting!=)

For Medical Students Only: Scholarships!!!


Here is the short list of scholarships for medical students that I use. As mentioned in the nursing students blog, email me for the longer list. Good luck! This was compiled from the same scholarship list that I use. Happy applying, and as always….Remember that our proof-reading services are also available=)

Marvin and Kathleen G Teget Leadership Scholarship (for DO students)

ACOFP Scholarships (for DO students)

Commitment to Diversity SOMA  (for DO students)

AMA Minority Scholars Award

SAAOCFP Scholarship (for DO students)

Piscano Scholars Leadership Program 

Indian Health Services Scholarships

AMA Excellence in Medicine Award

Steury Medical Missions Scholarship

Sherry R. Arnstein Minority Scholarship(for DO students)

AMA Physician of Tomorrow Scholarship

Proofreading scholarship

National Medical Fellowship General Scholarships

SOMA New Member Scholarship(for DO students)

Primary Care Leadership Program (for the economically disadvantaged)

AMA Foundation Leadership Award

ACOFP Writing Award Scholarship(for DO students)

For Nurses Only: Scholarships!!!


You asked for it, so here it is! A brief listing of nursing scholarships…the very one that my wife used during her undergraduate career. As many of you know, my wife and I would not be where we are today without having been awarded MANY MANY MANY scholarships! Jessica went through nursing school on a full-tuition scholarship and was also awarded several thousand-dollars worth of other scholarships.

The following is the “Short” list of nursing scholarships she used during her nursing school career. She is now in nurse practitioner school and uses a different list of scholarships. The “long” list of undergraduate nursing scholarships is available upon request. Please email me to inquire. Thanks!

Try luck, prayer, and a lot of ibuprofen (to help with the cramps from writing all of the required essays). That’s the formula she used to win so many. Good Luck, and keep us informed of your progress!

P.S. Don’t forget that our proof-reading services are always available as well=)

New Careers in Nursing for the economically disadvantaged 

NSNA Scholarships

AAOHN scholarships

Promise of Nursing Scholarship 

March of Dimes Scholarship

New Nurses Essay Contest 

Hurst Review Scholarship

Back to Nurisng Scholarship 

Certified background scholarship 

HRSA Nursing loan repayment program 

Nurses’ Educational Funds Scholarship

HRSA Nursing Scholarship 

Nurses Week Scholarship

Nursing Economics Scholarship

Barbara Rhomberg Excellence in Nursing Scholarship

Nurse I am Scholarship  

Ignorance is Bliss? (Scholarship Research)

The Following is an Excerpt from: Confessions of a College Recruiter

(This will be an eBook available for download soon)


Confessions Chapter 3

Ignorance is Bliss…

Often times, I am actually surprised by the amount of knowledge potential college students lack. I don’t mean things like they don’t understand what angular momentum is or can’t name five digits past the decimal of pi. Heck, I’ll even forgive them for not being able to name who wrote The Great Gatsby, but I mean basic practical knowledge that you would take for granted them knowing is just not there. I’ll provide a few examples of this.

Not long ago, I was assisting some students with finding scholarships on one of the many free search engines on the internet. One particular student with blonde hair and blue eyes (trust me, this info makes the story so much better) asks me why she’s not able to register for one of the scholarships. I look at the requirements and tell her politely that it’s because the scholarship is for Native Americans only. She then proceeds to tell me that she doesn’t understand…she’s been here in America her whole life – born and bred! (True story believe it or not)I explained to her that she would need a CDIB, or tribal number, to apply for it. So, she then responds by asking me if her daddy can purchase one of those from the school!

Another example – one of my fellow recruiters was at a college fair where parents and their high school children can walk around to the various college tables together and discuss specifics to see which college/university would be best suited for their needs. One student and her mom walk up to my fellow recruiter and ask if she offers radiology at her school. The recruiter begins telling them about the requirements for medical school and then the process of residency for radiology, unless they mean radiologic tech. The student interrupts her to explain that she means radiology as in being a disc jockey on the radio! (Again, this is a totally true story, believe it or not)

Am I making fun of these situations? No, because I would rather them ask than not ask and just go through life ignorant. Of course, the stories are consequently funny, but I am not making fun of the individuals. You see, there is a difference between one being ignorant, which is definitively to simply not know something, and one choosing to stay in the dark. If you want to know something – just ask! It can’t be much worse than the above examples. Want to know something surprising? The blonde student is about to be a nurse. She graduates this year, has a 3.7 GPA, and actually did receive a pretty good scholarship (although not a Native American one).

This just goes to show, you can never count somebody out based upon a seemingly ignorant question. She asked because she was seeking something, and when she ran into a roadblock, she continued looking until she found a path suitable for her – and it paid off monetarily! In both scenarios above, I can see how the terms “Native American” and “radiology” could possibly be misleading if someone had never been exposed to them…the scary part is considering that they had gone through high school without ever having been exposed to them! Or, if they were, then they didn’t pay attention.


Confessions Tip #3: Here are some of my favorite scholarship search engines that are free for all of my scholarship junkies out there:

(Remember to get these and many more, plus insider tips from me and other colleges in my forthcoming book “Confessions of a Scholarship Junkie” coming out soon!) (For GA residents)  (Great all-around scholarship search engine)  (Great info about scholarship searches)

financial aid full-tuition scholarships (Some full-tuition scholarships available)

Hispanic and Latino Scholarships (Info on Hispanic and Latino Scholarships)

United Negro College Fund (Scholarships for African-American HBCU students)

Hispanic Scholarship Fund (Scholarships for Hispanic college students)

Confessions Chapter Lesson #3:

Yes, ignorance is bliss. But, unfortunately (or fortunately perhaps!), bliss is not a prerequisite for college success. So, search for answers to what you don’t know, and ask questions regardless of how dumb they may sound to you anyone else. After all, when you’ve graduated and are successful in life, how dumb you feel asking a question right now will be irrelevant. But, the answer you may never get because you were too afraid to ask could make all the difference in the world!

In other words, I must confess that some questions do sound pretty dumb. However, I would much rather you ask me and get a clear understanding of what you need rather than you not ask and make a bad decision about your future!

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things (Website Version)…

Although I too like “raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens,” I am revealing some of my favorite websites in this blog instead of comparing notes with Julie Andrews (Sound of Music). More are to come in the future, so stay tuned (or just get the eBook – coming soon as well). People often ask me questions like, “Where do you recommend I go to learn basic Spanish for free?” or “Where can I compare the best credit cards out there for my credit score?” or “Heck, how do I even get my credit report AND score…for free?”

Well, the answers to these questions and more (to the best of my knowledge and objective opinion) are below. Have fun with them, and please feel free to drop me an email with new suggested websites you’ve discovered or stories on how any of these suggested websites below worked for you! Thanks! And, I hope this post helps!

My Favorite Websites to Get Textbooks for Cheap! (owned by ebay) (possibly my favorite here. Email me for online coupons)

Would you all believe I actually possess ALL of my first-year med school books and only spent $230 thanks to these websites above? I remember in my undergrad years, my Anatomy & Physiology book packet alone cost me $350 at retail price! Wish I knew then what I know now!

My Favorite “Learn Spanish” Website:

Here is a link to start (begins with a basic grammar tutorial):

Although there are many websites out there that just chart conjugations for you regarding Spanish verbs, I prefer this website for any beginner because it teaches the basic rules of grammar. I particularly love the grammar section on this website! (y me encanta especialmente la seccion de gramatica en este pagina…para todos mis amigos y amigas que hablan español un poco).

My Favorite Math and Stats Online Calculator Websites:

Wow! There are too many to name, but here are a few:  (Great for calculating Z scores!)  (Great composite site for finding cumulative probabilities from p or z!) (from simplifying rational expressions to calculating derivatives!)

Ok, so maybe I got a little carried away with this one. But, hey…l did it all for you – you academic beast, you (at least, that’s the reason I’ll tell myself regarding why I know all of these math websites!) Get your math on!

My Favorite Stock Website (Back When I Wasn’t a College Student and Had Money!)

This is by far my favorite stock-trading website. Whether one is just novice or a pro at stock-trading or options, this is the place to get it done! It’s now owned by Capital One (which you will learn soon enough is one of my favorite companies in itself), and it has some of the best tools available! Plus, it only costs $6.95 per trade whether buying or selling. They just lowered the boom on their prices from $9.95 per trade to $6.95 per trade in the name of treating their customers right (according to some of their publications).

Don’t be afraid to email me about stocks. I don’t have the money to invest right now, but I still follow them all the time…really, all the time! lol. I’m part of Cramerica! (for all the “home-gamers” out there!)

My Favorite Online Banks

Ok, so this bank is awesome! Any ATM fees accrued during the month are reimbursed to you at the end of each month. But, please be a good steward and use responsibly. For example, if you know the ATM around the corner from you only charges $2, but the one next to your house charges $5, please try your best to drive the extra quarter-mile so that companies like this can continue offering their services.

By the way, this bank is endorsed by many big league publications like MONEY magazine. There are some issues that I don’t like though with their joint-accounts. If you are a married or dating couple and want to get a joint bank account here, feel free to email me with questions on why I am not a huge fan of this aspect of the company. Thanks.

My Favorite Online Credit Union:

According to an article in Kiplinger magazine, credit unions: “tend to charge lower loan rates, pay higher savings yields and “treat borrowers who are struggling more sympathetically.”

Just a good online credit union here that anyone can join. All you have to do is make a donation to one of their charity partners (I believe $5 or $10 will do the trick), and BOOM! Instant online credit union. Credit unions in themselves have their own advantages and are protected by the NCUA (the credit union-equivalent of the FDIC).

I’ve heard good things about this online credit union too, and it is open for anyone to join from my understanding:

Although, I do not, or have not ever, had any experiences with them (Connexus) personally. Hey, maybe you can try them out and drop me a line about how they are!

If you want to learn more about other online credit unions that anyone can join, check out this article from Kiplinger magazine:

My Favorite Credit Card Websites:

These are all pretty self-explanatory websites with excellent comparative tools for you to use. “” is by far the best to me for credit card discovery, but “” is great for comparing many other different products besides credit cards. And, “,” as I mentioned earlier, is just a favorite of mine. They have some really great credit cards for any situation, including the following: low-income, coming-out-of-bankruptcy or rebuilding credit, college students, or no credit history at all.

My Favorite Credit Report Websites:

We all know the jingle: “Free credit report dot com – tell your friends, tell your dad, tell your mom” ’cause if you don’t watch out, then you just might “end up selling fish to tourists in t-shirts” at a pirate restaurant. Ironically though, is actually NOT free at all. You must pay for a service to get your credit reports from here, and it is sponsored and owned by Experian (one of the 3 major credit bureaus themselves)!

The only truly “FREE” websites I know of from experience is “” (listed above) – which offers all 3 credit reports for free once-a-year with no gimmicks, and “” – which is sponsored by TransUnion (one of the 3 major credit bureaus themselves). The TransUnion one is an extremely powerful tool in itself and is even mentioned and recommended by Clark Howard.

My Favorite Sacred Texts Website:

 This website makes accessible everything sacred (scripturally speaking) from as far East as the Vedas (Hinduism) and the Kojiki (Shinto) to the West, like the Christian Bible (Christianity), and includes everything in between as well, like the Koran (Muslim) and Kitab-I-Aqdas (Baha’i Faith). I love this website, and I can’t wait to have money to donate to it and buy some of the products – especially the CD-ROM.

My Favorite “Free” College Courses Websites:

This has been all the craze lately for us college students, and I have jumped right in head-first as well. Not learning well from your professor who can’t seem to keep your attention long enough to make it past the CoA step of the Krebs Cycle? Or, still can’t quite seem to grasp just how far away a light year is? Check out all of the free courses here! These two websites are excellent ways to get a variety of perspectives taught to you on the same subject, and to just watch for fun too!

…If you’re in to that sort of thing, like me=)