17th March 2022
If you’re an aspiring medic at school, you can boost your Medicine application by applying for competitions and prizes. Regardless of whether you win or not, you’ll be able to include the experience in your Personal Statement and talk about it at Med School interviews. Here are some Medicine competitions you can enter to be proactive and make your application stand out.

Minds Underground Medicine Essay Competition

Minds Underground Medicine Essay Competition is aimed at students in Year 12, but younger students are also welcome to enter.

This year, entrants choose one question to answer from the following options:

  • If you could invent a new drug, what would it be and why?
  • What will the impact of an ageing population on the NHS look like?
  • “This idea must die: We can’t find new antimicrobials fast enough to make a difference.” Do you agree?

The competition is designed to give students an opportunity to engage in research, hone their writing and argumentative skills, and prepare for university interviews. Minds Underground also holds essay competitions for other science subjects like Psychology and STEM.

Deadline – 31st March 2022


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The Libra Essay Prize

The Libra Essay Prize is for students in Years 12 and 13 who are looking to prepare for university. Inspired by the admissions process at All Souls College, Oxford, entrants write an essay (1,000-2,000 words) responding to a single-word title.

These are the essay title options for 2022:

  • Sustainability
  • Crisis
  • Return
  • Connection
  • Memory
  • Senses

Entrants are encouraged to use imagination in their essays to build interesting links between their chosen title and their school learning. There are prizes available of £75 for first place, £50 for second place and £25 for third place.

Deadline – 24th June 2022

Imperial College London – Science at Heart and Lung School Teams Prize

Sixth form students can form a team and compete for a prize in one of two streams – Lung Disease or Heart & Circulatory Disease. Each team can have up to six members, and each school can have one submission per prize – so check with your school before you enter.

The challenge is to design an ePoster which illustrates a strategy (combining hard sciences with biomedicine) to reduce the number of disabilities and deaths caused by lung disease or heart & circulatory disease. The judges are looking for a vision based on realistic trends in science and engineering, rather than summaries of existing care pathways.

The top ten shortlisted teams will present their ePosters to an audience online, and the top five teams will also be invited to present theirs at the Imperial Festival in 2023. In each stream, first, second and third prizes of £3,000, £2,000 and £1,000 will be awarded to schools in order to support science-related activities.

Deadline – midday on 30th June 2022

University of Cambridge – Robinson College Essay Prize

The Robinson College Essay Prize is open to Year 12 students, providing an opportunity to develop and showcase independent study and writing skills. It also allows students to experience the type of work that they might be expected to do at Cambridge.

Entrants submit an essay (no more than 2,000 words) answering a question from various options. Up to three entries can be submitted per school, so you should discuss your application with your school before entering.

Five prizes are awarded, with each winner receiving book tokens to the value of £50. Winners will also be invited to Robinson College for a prize-giving ceremony.

The 2022 prize will open with more info in June.

University of Oxford – Sixth Form Prize in Medicine

The University of Oxford Sixth Form Prize in Medicine is for Year 12 students from state-funded schools, colleges or sixth forms who are considering applying for Medicine.

The prize aims to raise awareness of traumatic injury, and encourage students with an interest in Medicine to explore this subject further and apply for Medical School.

Entrants write an essay (750-1,000 words) answering a question related to traumatic injury. First prize is a 7-day work experience placement in the Major Trauma Centre, Oxford.

The 2022 prize isn’t open for entries yet.


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