The Pre-Medical Program at Mills combines a strong foundation in natural science with a liberal arts education. Modern medicine seeks physicians who can combine technical expertise with strong interpersonal skills; the humanistic perspectives derived from study of the liberal arts help develop this balance.
There are a variety of different health science professional schools, including those for dentistry, optometry, osteopathy, veterinary medicine, pharmacy, podiatry, naturopathic medicine and, of course, the largest and most highly visible area, allopathic medicine. Admission to health science professional programs is highly competitive, particularly to schools of allopathic medicine. Success in the application process requires careful attention to preparation in a number of areas. The health professions advisor is a valuable asset in this planning process and works closely with each student to plan her academic program as well as her overall preparation for her career. Students are encouraged to gain experience in their chosen health profession by engaging in volunteer work, internship experience, or paid employment. Students are also encouraged to take advantage of research opportunities during the academic year and in the summer months. The small class size at Mills contributes in many ways to a student's education and to her personal and intellectual development. In addition, it provides opportunities for faculty members to know students well and thus be able to write meaningful letters of recommendation when the time comes to apply to health professions schools.
The atmosphere of pre-professional study at Mills is one of cooperation, support, and encouragement. Students are congenial, help each other, and think in terms of working together toward a common goal. The history of success Mills students have had in gaining admission to health professions schools also contributes to a positive and confident spirit in pre-medical students at Mills. A student planning to enter the health science professions can major in any of variety of disciplines in the natural sciences including biology, biochemistry and molecular biology, chemistry, or biopsychology. However students specifically interested in applying to allopathic medical schools will note how the new requirements adopted by these schools place significant constraints on the choice of a major.
The following list of suggested courses is based upon the topics included in the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), but it will also meet or exceed the requirements for other health science professional schools. Additional upper-division course work in biology and chemistry, however, is valuable preparation for the Dental Admission Test (DAT), the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), or other admission tests. These courses also prepare students for the course work taken in the health professions schools themselves.
For further information and advice, consult one of the health professions advisors listed above. It is strongly recommended that students meet with the health professions advisor at least once an academic year, or more frequently if desired, to review the status of her preparation for professional school.
Suggested Minimum List of Courses
Psychology and the Social Sciences
Because human genomics will become a more integral part of medicine, there is also value in the study of genetics, the second semester of biochemistry (BIOC 142), and/or statistics.
Faculty and Staff
Full Course List