Pre-Medicine
  • Preparation for Allopathic, Osteopathic and Podiatric Medical School Programs


    Pre-medicine is a college-wide program supported by several departments. Diversity of faculty interests, training and experience provides students with the best possible preparation for a challenging career.

    Students begin with a common core of science and mathematics courses and then complete a major of their choice. The value of such a program lies in the usefulness of the bachelor's degree earned, should a student decide not to enroll in medical school. Graduate school or immediate employment are viable options with these degrees. In addition, the programs for all pre-health professions are essentially the same for the first two years, giving students ample time to change career directions without backtracking. An optional career seminar in the fall of the second year provides help in making such decisions.

    The director of the health professions department, along with faculty advisers in individual departments, works closely with pre-med students to monitor their progress. Students receive a comprehensive Handbook for Pre-Health Students outlining the steps needed to be a successful medical school applicant, as well as the resources available to help achieve this goal. Seminars, field trips to medical schools, student clubs, help with applications, internship placement and mock medical school interviews are some of the services provided.

    Preparation for medical school requires a rigorous program in the sciences. Although non-science majors may gain admission to medical school, they must take many of their elective courses in biology, chemistry and physics. For this reason, most Capital students considering medical school pursue either a biology or a chemistry major.

    Regardless of the major, undergraduate preparation for medical school generally includes:

    • Foundations of Biology I and II
    • Principles of Chemistry I and II
    • Calculus I
    • Genetics
    • Microbiology
    • Organic Chemistry I and II
    • General Physics I and II
    • Vertebrate Anatomy
    • Vertebrate Physiology
    • Biochemistry
    • English (two courses)


    Elective choices, among others, include:

    • Internship (highly recommended)
    • Introduction to Psychology
    • Medical Terminology
    • Immunology
    • Histology
    • Foreign Language


    Students who have taken these courses, who have maintained at least a 3.5 grade point average, and who have positive recommendations from faculty members are good candidates for medical school admission. In addition to a solid science background, students must score well on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).

    The low student/faculty ratio at Capital University is a great benefit to pre-med students in that the faculty recommendations are based on actual knowledge of the applicant's strengths both inside and outside the classroom.

    Placement

    Capital University is proud of its above-average placement of students into medical school programs. Over the past seven years, more than 80 percent of those who applied to medical school have been accepted – twice the national average. This is due to the academic strength of the program itself and the advising program that helps students to find the best niches for them.

    In recent years, Capital graduates have been offered admission to a variety of medical schools in Ohio and around the nation, including: Medical College of Ohio, Ohio University, The Ohio State University, Wright State University, University of Cincinnati, Case Western Reserve University, Washington University (St. Louis), Temple University, Thomas Jefferson University, Michigan State University, West Virginia University, University of Tennessee, University of Heath Science (Kansas City) and Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine.
     

    Reflections and Advice from Capital Graduates Who Are Now Physicians

    Dr. Shelly L. Blackburn
    Family Physician


    During high school, Dr. Blackburn worked in a local nursing home, and it was this experience that contributed to her desire to pursue a health career. While she began her Capital studies in the School of Nursing, she was encouraged to consider medical school by several members of the science departments. By her sophomore year, Dr. Blackburn's career choice was made and she changed her major to biology with a pre-medical emphasis. In spite of a demanding class and lab schedule, she was actively involved in a sorority and played center for the varsity basketball team.

    While Dr. Blackburn finds it difficult to quantify her undergraduate experience, she feels that Capital taught her how to study and to expand her vision of the type of person she wanted to be. She points to courses such as biochemistry and organic chemistry as most important in her preparation for the MCAT.

    Dr. Cynthia A. Mace-Motta
    Obstetrics and Gynecology


    Dr. Mace-Motta stresses the importance of both grades and test scores for students who are considering medical school. Volunteer work in hospitals is invaluable in that it gives students a realistic view of the medical profession from which career objectives can be realistically judged.

    College grades and MCAT scores are important. In addition, a strong science background is essential. Dr. Mace-Motta pursued a major in biology with a minor in chemistry. She recommends that potential medical students have back-up plans that can include teaching, research or graduate school. If students anticipate a delay in going to medical school after graduation, they should attend graduate school to keep their study skills sharp.

    Dr. Phillip N. Simon
    Wright State University School of Medicine


    Dr. Simon feels that Capital's science curriculum prepared him well for medical school. He found that the advanced-level courses, such as biochemistry, cell and molecular biology, and immunology, were especially helpful in making the transition from undergraduate studies to medical school. The small class size and availability of the faculty allowed him to ask for help when needed. But more importantly, Capital's small school design allowed him to develop his own course of education with independent study classes his senior year.

    While at Capital, Dr. Simon was very involved in extracurricular activities. Despite his busy schedule and challenging coursework, he still had time to sing with the Chapel Choir, get involved with Student Government and serve as a Capital Ambassador. He also had the opportunity to present a research poster at a conference in San Francisco. Dr. Simon feels that his outstanding academic program, as well as his well-rounded involvement at Capital, were keys to his acceptance into medical school.