Opportunities in the medical field are changing rapidly, and as a physician, you can play a significant role in patients’ overall health and wellness in this growing profession. Although requirements vary at professional schools, a strong foundation in the natural and social sciences as part of a well-rounded liberal arts education is considered excellent preparation for medical school. Major changes to the MCAT in January 2015 heavily favor a liberal arts education, with emphasis on behavioral science, ethics and applied statistics.
Central students are successful on entrance exams and in securing acceptance into medical schools with the assistance of an on-campus pre-health adviser, internship coordinator and academic advisers to ensure that you complete the required courses, complete the required hours of observation, maintain a GPA of 3.6 or higher and take advantage of the many on- and off-campus opportunities for research and professional development. Central’s pre-professional program prepares you to pursue medical education in graduate school. With the help of your adviser, you will choose a major that best prepares you for further study.
Students interested in medicine are able to shadow local professionals for limited hours. Shadowing opportunities are available across the state including:
Students may major in any area that fits with personal and professional life goals. For pre-medicine, you are encouraged to major in a natural science, with another major or minor in the behavioral sciences.
Regardless of major choice, students are required to successfully complete a series of courses in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, English and social sciences. Students must also complete the MCAT exam.
The Central College Career Center provides the following activities to help pre-health students narrow career options: individual appointments to identify career options in the health field, job shadowing opportunities with local professionals or Central alumni, assistance with finding and applying for internships and summer opportunities, help with graduate school applications and much more.
Russ Benedict, B.A., M.A., Ph.D. Professor of Biology, interest areas include: interest areas include prairie ecology and restoration, conservation biology, natural history and mammalogy
Cathy Haustein, B.A., M.F.A., Ph.D. Professor of Chemistry, interest areas include: analytical chemistry, inorganic chemistry instrumental analysis, the extraction of alkaloids from natural products, fluorescence spectroscopy and fiction writing
Viktor Martisovits, RNDr., M.S., Ph.D. Associate Professor of Physics
Nicole Palenske, B.S., M.S., Ph.D. Associate Professor of Biology, interest areas include: human anatomy and physiology, environmental physiology and aquatic toxicology
Jim Shriver, B.S., M.S., Ph.D. Professor of Chemistry, interest areas include: synthetic organic chemistry, molecular engineering and design, supramolecular chemistry and anion binding
Thanks to Central's small class and laboratory section size, faculty are able to provide each student with individualized attention and the opportunity to develop skills necessary for graduate school. Our faculty members also provide personalized advising that ensures you meet the coursework requirements for graduate school.
And to help students get into graduate school, faculty provide letters of recommendation that make a vital difference in the decision process for acceptance into medical programs.
Central's Health Professions Club also provides mentoring, informs students about opportunities related to healthcare, and coordinates visits to and from various graduate programs. The club's faculty adviser also provides free workshops to address a range of interests, from career exploration to preparing for graduate entrance exams and application.
Central faculty provide students with many research and professional development opportunities, of which students are encouraged to take full advantage while on campus including undergraduate research and presentations at scientific meetings, internships, shadowing programs, targeted service-learning opportunities related to career goals and much more.
Central College is a founding member of the Heartland Global Health Consortium whose mission is to establish and expand multidisciplinary educational, research and service opportunities to inspire and equip students to become leaders in global public health. The consortium provides additional opportunities for students to participate in educational, global research and global medical service experiences.
Students are encouraged to study abroad with one of Central’s international programs to enhance their development as global citizens, or with partner programs in Chicago or Washington, D.C. Learn more about Central’s study abroad programs.