NM Discovery Program North Chapter

Discovery Program North Chapter

NM Discovery Program North Chapter

In order to meet increasing demand and to better serve our expanding health care system, we are excited to announce the newest chapter of the NM Discovery Program – the North Chapter! The Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program aims to create a pathway for the next generation of NM leaders by drawing on the talents of our incredible team of health care professionals to provide STEM career exposure. Throughout the two-year Program, students will be exposed to a broad range of health care careers through activities including tours, guest speakers, group discussion, and hands-on projects. In addition, the Program fosters character and professional development, cultivates life skills, provides community service and leadership experience, and offers mentorship and networking opportunities.

The Program’s North Chapter is open to high school students who meet the below eligibility criteria and who reside in Lake and McHenry counties. Please note, if you are a second year participant and a resident of Lake or McHenry county, you will continue as a member of the Central Chapter. Meetings are held once a month at Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest Hospital in Lake Forest, Illinois. Generally, meetings are held on Saturdays from 9:00 am-12:00 pm, however, some meetings will be on weekdays when students are generally out of school. All participants are responsible for their own transportation to and from each meeting, although some transportation assistance may be available for the North region. Please note, meeting dates, day of the week, times, and topics are subject to change.


First Year Applicants must:

  • Be at least 15 years of age.
  • Be a resident of Lake or McHenry county.
  • Be entering sophomore or junior year of high school.
  • Have an academic GPA of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 GPA scale).
  • Commit to the two year program, including attendance at all Discovery Program meetings and community service activities. No more than two excused absences are permitted per year.
  • Commit to abide by all Discovery Program Guidelines and Policies.
  • Submit the completed First Year Applications to the appropriate Chapter.

First Year Application Requirements

Applicants must submit the following. Incomplete applications, applications sent piecemeal in multiple emails, or applications directed to the wrong location, will NOT be reviewed. Please read the following directions carefully as the application process has changed.

  • Completed Application Form
  • Personal statement: Describe why you are interested in discovering careers in healthcare.
    • Successful applicants will be specific in their response
    • Statement must meet the following criteria:
      • Typed in essay format
      • 300-500 words
      • Grammatically correct
  • Essay question: Choose a book or books that have affected you deeply and explain why.
    • Successful applicants will fully answer the question including: what and why.
    • Statement must meet the following criteria:
      • Typed in essay format
      • 300-500 words
      • Grammatically correct
  • Academic recommendation
    • Submit one (1) letter of recommendation; additional letters will NOT be reviewed
    • MUST be from an academic reference (teacher, counselor, principal, etc.)
    • MUST be attached and submitted via your application email
  • Official school transcripts
    • MUST be signed and sealed from the school, submitted by mail, and postdated prior to the application deadline OR submitted via email directly from school/third party processing company
    • Unofficial transcripts will NOT be accepted and will render your application incomplete.
  • Proof of Participation in free/discounted lunch program (or similar) when applicable
    • If you participate in a free/discounted lunch program (or similar) at school, please attach proof of participation to your application; if accepted into the program, your participation fee will be waived
    • MUST be attached and submitted via your application email
  • Submitted in ONE complete email to: NMDiscoveryProgramNorth@nm.org
    • Must submit all materials in ONE email
    • ONLY official transcripts may be submitted via mail – if online delivery is not available – to the following address:

      Northwestern Medicine Community Affairs
      Attn: Seth Kidder
      1000 N Westmoreland Rd
      Lake Forest, IL 60045

Participation Requirements for all Participants (for your information only as an applicant)

In addition to the Application Requirements, those applicants accepted into the Discovery Program will be required to submit the following before/at Orientation.

Do NOT send with application

  • Program fee (ONCE ACCEPTED): $50 (includes all NM-sponsored activities and a t-shirt)
    • Check or money order only (no cash)
    • Fee waived with proof of free/reduced lunch program (or similar) when submitted via application email
  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program North Chapter Guide Signature Page
    • Signed by BOTH participant and parent/guardian/legal representative
  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program North Chapter Consent Form
    • Signed by participant’s parent/guardian/legal representative


Only complete applications, containing all requirements listed above, will be reviewed.

  • All parts of the application must be submitted together via email:
    1. Written application (PDF)
    2. Personal statement (Word or PDF attachment)
    3. Essay question (Word or PDF attachment)
    4. Proof of participation in free/discounted lunch program (if applicable)
    5. Letter of recommendation
    6. Official School transcript (unless mailed/emailed directly from school/third party company)


Applications will NOT be reviewed for the following reasons.

  • Application is not received by the deadline (i.e. is late)
  • Application is incomplete or sent piecemeal
  • Applicant does not follow the directions

Application Deadline

The 2018 application deadline has closed. Discovery Program Applications for the 2019-2020 school year will be made available in the Fall of 2019.


All complete applications are carefully reviewed by a committee. Applicants should not expect to hear from the Discovery Program regarding participation until late October 2018 via email.

Due to the volume of applications, transcripts, and recommendation letters sent we are not able to notify students and school staff that we have received their email. For confirmation that your email was received, we recommend that you set the option of Request a Delivery Receipt on your email.


For questions about the application process, please call or email: Seth Kidder at 847.535.7073 or Seth.Kidder@nm.org.