Medical Sciences

The medical sciences program is an academic preparation for individuals who want to attend medical, dental, or veterinary school. Students interested in these professional programs can major in any discipline provided that the required courses are completed in order to prepare for the admissions exams and requirements of professional programs the student attends. Data collected by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) indicates that students applying to medical school with degrees in physical sciences, including chemistry, tend to perform better on the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) and have a higher acceptance rate than students in the biological sciences. Our Medical Sciences curriculum is an excellent preparation for students interested in chemistry and in going to professional schools in the field of medicine. The courses include a balance of chemistry, biology, mathematics, and social sciences necessary for application. Graduates from this program are also competitive for MD/PhD programs.

It should be noted that students enrolled in the medical sciences concentration are not eligible for American Chemical Society certification as several of the upper division chemical laboratory experiences are replaced with biology courses. Students enrolled in this program must maintain a GPA of 3.2.

What’s Special About Medical Sciences at Ship?

Science classes are small at Shippensburg University, usually having no more than 16 students per laboratory section. Seasoned professors, not graduate students, teach lectures and labs. State-of-the-art laboratory equipment is available to students, giving them hands-on experience with current techniques.

Ship students receive careful, personal advisement, which includes appropriate course selection and monitoring of their progress. The University Health Professions Committee, that is composed of faculty with expertise related to medical, dental, and veterinary school, work with students in the medical sciences concentration to guide them through the challenging process of applying to medical professional programs. This ensures Ship health science students receive accurate, current, and comprehensive information. The committee also provides mock interviews for students once they start the application process.

Where Can Medical Sciences Get Me?

Students in this concentration have done exceptionally well in their applications to medical, dental, and veterinary schools. Some of the programs to which students have matriculated include:

  • Drexel University College of Medicine
  • Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • West Virginia University School of Medicine
  • University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine
  • Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry

Successful completion of these programs can lead to rewarding careers in pharmacy, including:

  • Physician
  • Vet
  • Biomedical Researcher
  • Dentist

How Do Medical Sciences Students Spend Their Time?

A minimum of 120 credits (four years) of specific college prerequisites is required for entry into four year medical, dental and veterinary programs. Prerequisites for entry into these programs typically include:

  • 8 credits of biology
  • 16 credits of chemistry
  • 6 credits in biochemistry
  • 8 credits of physics
  • Mathematics through calculus
  • 3 credits in psychology
  • 3 credits in sociology
  • 6 credits in English

To be competitive when applying to professional schools, students should accumulate a GPA of 3.3 or higher. It is also important the students have accrued a minimum of 40 hours shadowing in their field of interest. In addition, professional school will look at student activities, work history, and leadership qualities.

You are expected to complete general education courses, including humanities, social sciences and courses emphasizing communications such as English composition and speech.

The undergraduate catalog details specific course requirements.

Faculty-directed undergraduate research is highly encouraged at Ship. Each year, between six and 12 undergraduate science students present results of their research at regional, state or national conferences.

Medical sciences students are also encouraged to participate in an undergraduate research experience at a larger university with a professional school or at the National Institutes of Health in order to become acquainted with the field prior to making formal application to selected professional programs.

Our students are exposed to diverse health professional interests of other students and a variety of health professionals who are invited to speak at the university through the Health Sciences Club. This exposure makes them aware of alternative programs in the health care field.