(Note: This posting is the first of a series of articles highlighting different programs at Oregon State. This post is geared towards the many questions that students and counselors have about pre med program at Oregon State. Much of the content of this post comes from the College of Science paper, “Pre Med Programs – How to Prepare for Medical School”.)
1. Variety of “pre med”? Majors
Students can apply to medical school with any major, as long as required pre med courses are completed. OSU offers the greatest variety of “pre med degrees” of any university in the state. Our pre med students choose majors in Science (Biology, Biochemistry/Biophysics, Chemistry, Microbiology, Zoology), Engineering (Bioengineering, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Health Physics), Health and Human Sciences (Exercise and Sports Science, Nutrition, Public Health), and Liberal Arts (History, Music, Psychology, Spanish, etc).
2. Research Opportunities
Research enhances a student’s medical school application, and OSU attracts more research funding than any other institution in the state. For 2005-2006, OSU faculty brought in more than $208 million. In 2004, 56 OSU students participated in the OSU Howard Hughes Medical Institute Summer Undergraduate Research Program on campus.
3. Experienced, Accessible Advisors
Access to experienced pre med advisors is extremely important. The advisors at Oregon State will be available to help students and ensure that they are on track with their pre med courses. OSU has a Pre med Committee composed of the Chief Pre med Advisor, Chere Pereira, and 13 other experienced faculty members who meet with students and help them with all aspects of the preparation and application. Ms. Pereira is the most experienced Pre med Advisor in Oregon. She has been in the position since 1987, and is also very involved with the NAAHP (National Association of Advisors for Health Professions) where she has served on the Board of Directors since 2000. She is currently a member of the NAAHP Committee on Minority Affairs, Chair of the Professional Development Committee, and has recently been appointed NAAHP Liaison to the Physician Assistant Profession. In addition, she has served as President and Program Chair for the western division of the NAAHP. Ms. Pereira has also conducted External Reviews of other Pre Med Programs.
4. Special Pre Med Courses and Pre Med Programs
During spring quarter OSU offers a helpful pre med Orientation Course which features local physicians, admissions officers, and information about coursework, majors, finances, etc.
For those applying to medical school, there is an application seminar series consisting of informational sessions and discussions about health care issues, and there is assistance offered at every step of the application process.
The Preceptorship Program matches pre med students with local physicians, so that they can learn more about the profession. In addition speakers, such as Dr. John Kitzhaber, former Oregon governor and author of the Oregon Health Plan, visit campus on a regular basis.
5. Excellent Track Record with Med School Admissions
Oregon State pre med students graduate and attend medical schools all across the country, and our students are well-regarded and well-prepared. The preparation comes from strong pre med courses, and critical thinking and communication found in our baccalaureate core classes.
Click here to be mailed information about OSU and the pre med program.
Pre med degrees/majors at OSU
As previously mentioned, there is no specific pre med degree. Students can apply to medical school with any major, including non-science areas, as long as they take the required pre med courses listed by the school to which they apply. Generally these include a year each of General Chemistry, General Biology, General Physics, and Organic Chemistry. Liberal arts requirements often include a year each of humanities, social sciences and writing. The following majors would include the required pre med courses and science sequences:
Biochemistry/Biophysics; Biology; Microbiology; Zoology
Upper division courses include Genetics, Immunology, Bacterial Molecular Genetics, Pathogenic Microbiology, Virology, Plasmid Biology, Cell and Molecular Biology, Physiology, Vertebrate and Invertebrate Biology, and Embryology. It is important to begin serious study of the liberal arts early in your program as preparation for the MCAT, which contains a Verbal Reasoning and Writing section in addition to sciences. Courses which require writing are especially useful. Broad reading is also important.
Oregon State pre med students attend medical schools across the country including Harvard, Stanford, Johns Hopkins, Oregon Health Sciences University, Yale, and many more.