While we have many physicians in Maine who help us with pre-medical shadowing experiences and letters of recommendation, we have two main advisors who support students in their journey. As pre-medical advisors, their work includes mock interviews, application review, creating connections between pre-medical students with local physicians, and much more.
Dr. Kelsi Bean Thompson
Kelsi has been advising non-conventional undergraduate students, as well as students from underprivileged and high poverty backgrounds since 2013, and created this program. Kelsi grew up in Maine and attended the University of Maine at Machias for a BA in psychology, Eastern Maine Community College for an AAS in Emergency Medical Services, and then the University of Maine at Orono for post-baccalaureate studies. It was while working as a paramedic in Maine that she fell in love with medicine, and subsequently chose to apply to medical school. She graduated from UNECOM in 2018, and is currently an internal medicine resident at Largo Medical Center, in Largo, FL. Kelsi is pursuing a career in cardiac electrophysiology. In her spare time, if there is such a thing, she teaches karate with her husband.
Dr. Marie Dardeno
Marie is new to the Medical Mentor program in Maine, joining in 2018. She is a currently a family medicine resident and had a fairly non-traditional path to the medical field. She attended the University of Vermont for her undergraduate degree where she focused her studies on medical anthropology. After college, she raised money to travel to West Africa to volunteer for an eye health organization. This experience had a huge impact on her and inspired an interest to work directly with patients in the field of medicine. She enrolled at Boston University for post-bac courses as well as a Masters in Medical Sciences degree. Marie graduated from the University of New England’s College of Osteopathic Medicine in May 2018. She is currently a resident at the Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency program in Augusta. Her professional interests include osteopathic manipulative medicine, integrative medicine, and disease prevention. Marie is originally from Massachusetts but is now happy to call Maine her home. Her personal interests include gardening, yoga, and hiking.
What We Do
The students we work with are often first-time college attendees in their family, and most of them work full-time jobs while attending their undergraduate studies. Once a deficit in available advising resources was discovered in Maine, this program was developed to help bridge the gap faced by public university students, as well as socioeconomically disadvantaged students, while they apply and compete against students from private educations and affluent backgrounds.
Our goal is to assess applications, make suggested changes and/or recommend future experiences that will strengthen an application, as well as support students in the process of applying to medical school.
Some of the services provided are:
- Connect students with physicians that are local in the student’s areas for shadowing, experience hours and a letter of recommendation.
- Perform mock interviews.
- Review academic transcripts.
- Suggest future academic paths to strengthen applications.
- General advice and support while people transition in their aspirations.
- All services are FREE and time is provided on a volunteer basis.
- We are NOT working for any specific university or medical school.