Pre-Medical - Pre-Health Program - Christopher Newport University

Pre-Health Program


Pre-requisites for applying to medical school:

NOTE that AP and dual-enrollment credits in the basic science pre-requisites often will not be counted by programs as having met requirements for admission

  • BIOL 211/211L & BIOL 213/213L for Biology majors entering fall 2010 and later, or all non-biology majors (non-BIOL majors will need special permission to enroll in these courses; see the DPP)
  • Biology majors entering prior to fall 2010 must take BIOL 151/151L & BIOL 201/201L
  • CHEM 121/121L - CHEM 122/122/L; these courses should be completed as soon as possible
  • CHEM 321/321L - CHEM 322/322L
  • PHYS 151/151L - PHYS 152/152L
  • BCHM 414* or BCHM 410* (sited more often as a requirement as the new MCAT approaches)

The following courses are recommended, but not required: PSYC 201, PSYC 202, SOC 205, MATH 125, MATH 135 or 140 (Calculus is a requirement for some med schools), BIOL 301/301L, BIOL 307/307L, BIOL 313, BIOL 314/314/L - BIOL 315/315L, BIOL 411, BIOL 412/412L

*required for MCAT preparation

Pre-requisite coursework must be completed at some minimal level determined by each particular program; grades below a "C" are generally not accepted.

Students are ultimately responsible for determining specific course and admissions requirements for any program to which they plan to apply.

Admissions committees look for a strong academic record, as shown by:

  • Mastery of the basic science requirements
  • Broad and successful exposure to the humanities and social sciences
  • Ability to read and understand sophisticated material in the humanities, natural and social sciences (especially important when taking the MCAT)
  • Commitment to being a lifelong learner and evidence of "mature and independent scholarship" (e.g., participation in an independent study or honors program)

Medical programs also look for applicants who have:

  • Undergraduate research experience - Through the close mentorship of professors, undergraduate research fosters independent learning and complements pre-health coursework in meaningful ways. It allows students to develop critical-thinking skills and be an integral part of the research process.
  • Shadowing experience - Shadowing is a valuable career-development aid that gives students on-the-job experience their your chosen field. These real-time experiences allow students to ask questions and see professionals in action where they work.
  • Medical experience - Earning a certification as a medical scribe, CNA, or EMT is a great way for students to gain hands on patient care experience. Students also gain valuable skills in empathy, service orientation, ethical responsibility to self and others, and an awareness of what a career as a practicing physician entails.

Medical and professional schools are also interested in well-rounded applicants; extracurricular activities are important for developing these attributes:

  • Service to humanity is one of the highest ideals of medicine
  • Show interest in and ability to work with people
  • Take on leadership positions in student or community organizations
  • Get involved in student and dormitory government
  • Tutor underprivileged children in the community

To really "set yourself apart" from the average applicant, seek out experiences that are challenging, that take you out of your comfort zone. Work with diverse groups of peoples, of various ethnic origins and social classes.

Letters of recommendation from your activities' supervisors can be important additions to your application.

CNU-Eastern Virginia Medical School BS-MD Joint Program

Eastern Virginia Medical School (EVMS) and Christopher Newport have entered into an agreement whereby CNU applicants who meet certain criteria and are recommended by the director and the Council for Health Professions Preparation have the opportunity to apply for non-binding early acceptance into EVMS’ medical program. These students are guaranteed admission after they graduate from Christopher Newport, as long as they meet all academic requirements and score at minimum of 503 on the MCAT.

CNU-Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine BS-DO Joint Program

CNU and the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine (VCOM) have formed three agreements in which selected pre-med students may receive provisional early acceptance (Rocovich Scholars and VCOM Scholars) or a guaranteed early interview (for rising seniors in PSP) with VCOM.

Rocovich Scholars and VCOM Scholars are guaranteed admission after they graduate from CNU, as long as they meet all academic requirements of the agreement. Some accepted students will not be required to take an MCAT, dependent on GPA.

The AMCAS application typically opens during the first week of May each year for the following year’s medical school class. Since AMCAS submission doesn’t open until the first week of June, you’ll have about a month to begin working on your application before you can submit it. You’ll begin the application process in the spring in order to begin medical school in the fall of the following year.

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