Alpha Epsilon Delta supports pre-health students as they pursue their education

Alpha Delta Epsilon offers Baylor medical students an opportunity to grow professionally. Photo courtesy of Srikhar Chilukuri

By Luke Araujo | Staff Writer

The Texas Beta Chapter of Alpha Epsilon Delta, founded in 1929, is Baylor’s only pre-health honor society.

Tyler senior Cody Olson, president of the chapter, said the organization is primarily a community of pre-health students.

“We have a goal of not only helping each other grow professionally but supporting each other in solidarity of the difficult career path we face,” Olson said.

As a part of this, members are given many opportunities to involve themselves in research and get firsthand experience. The organization hosts various events, such as weekly socials, general meetings, scholarship events, global health events and networking events.

Houston junior Srikhar Chilukuri, vice president of service, said the organization also includes events surrounding faith in its weekly routine.

“We have weekly service and large service events that are usually on Fridays or Saturdays,” Chilukuri said. “Those [events] vary sometimes, but this semester and last semester, it has been almost one every week as well.”

Outside of weekly events, the organization hosts an annual event called the Pre-Health Symposium.

“It’s a very big pre-health event that we put on every year, usually at the end of February,” Olson said. “We invite professional schools from across the country to come and speak with us. It is a good networking opportunity and a good time for people to figure out what medical schools, veterinary schools and dental schools are about in Texas and beyond.”

The Baylor chapter ties to the national Alpha Epsilon Delta organization, which Olson said brings “instant recognition” from medical schools and other programs.

“AED is known,” Olson said. “We carry that goodwill with us. We are an honor society, and the effect that we have in an application process and interview process sets us apart from other organizations. However, we are not an honor society in the sense that we are conceited in that regard. We are very much a community.”

While the Baylor chapter of Alpha Epsilon Delta does not define itself by the honor society label, the organization still adopts honor society values.

“We are still trying to encourage academic excellence, one of our pillars,” Chilukuri said. “Service is another one of our pillars. Covering the bases that anyone pursuing a pre-health profession should involve themselves in is why we are associated with the Pre-Health Society.”

For those looking to join the organization, the new member process lasts five weeks, beginning directly after admission. During this process, new members have separate weekly meetings and social events apart from the general body.

“It’s a time for the cohort of new members, which is usually 30 people every semester, to grow very close together,” Olson said. “This is so when they enter the general membership, they already have close connections with their cohort of students. My new member process was one of my favorite parts of my undergraduate experience.”

To join, Olson said he recommends visiting the organization’s social media accounts and website, where potential applicants can sign up for a recruitment email list.

“Being a part of Alpha Epsilon Delta has been the best part of my undergraduate experience,” Olson said. “It is the best thing I have done. If other people can have an experience half as great as mine has been, it would have been worth it.”