For First Year and Sophomores

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A schedule for the first two years and general comments for students interested in all Health Professions including Veterinary Medicine.

(i.e. Pre-Med, Pre-Dental, Pre-Veterinary Medicine, Pharmacy, PT, Etc.) Prerequisites will vary by professional school goal.

First-Year

Enroll in Introductory Sciences.  Biology (130-140), Introductory Chemistry (111-112), Introductory Physics (109-110 or 111-112), or two sequences concurrently such as Biology and Chemistry based on the careful advice of your advisor.  Make sure you are meeting your professional school requirements. 

If you tentatively plan to major in one of the sciences, start with that sequence. 
 
Take all labs with your core sciences. 
 
AP credit is great, but be aware that most medical schools and many other professional schools do not accept it in lieu of work at the college level.  In this instance, upper level science work can often be done to satisfy the basic science requirements for professional schools.  Again, check specific professional school requirements   to stay on track).      
Most medical schools are different from all other health professions schools in that you need to complete the requirements before you can apply.  This means you should be done by the end of your junior year if you are to   right into medical school after graduation from Rhodes.  Most other professional schools require only that you complete requirements before you matriculate.  This means you can take prerequisites your senior year at Rhodes.  However remember that if the professional school requires an entrance exam, such as the PCAT, and you take it before completing the science requirements, you may not be as prepared as you need to be (depending on your background).

Come to the HPA meeting for first year students, in the first few weeks of the fall term (usually during orientation).  Make sure you are on the master HPA email distribution list.  Email Dr. Alan Jaslow, Director of Health Professions Advising.  Be sure to introduce yourself to Dr. Alan Jaslow when you can.

Get to know your professors.  Help them get to know you well.  This is important from the start.  Eventually you will need to ask professors to write evaluations or recommendations for you.  You need to get to know a few professors well each year and do what you can, through conversations to let them know you.  Discuss your goals and plans.  Continue these relationships in the coming years, even if you are not in other classes that they teach.

Good Citizenry:  During all of your years at Rhodes you will want to have a good record of social conduct and citizenry.  You don’t want future letter writers to say that you disregarded campus regulations, other’s safety, or did not respect faculty and staff (i.e. by illegally parking).  You will not want letter writers to be able to state that you failed to complete tasks or respond to queries in a timely manner.  You will want future letter writers to be able to address your respect for others and regulations.  You will want your future letters writers to address your honesty, reliability, class attendance, as well as past mature decisions and behavior.  Faculty will see and learn of some of your adventures, misadventures, and decisions while at Rhodes.

Participate in the Health Professions Society a student organization.  Along with other offices, the HPS will offer programming and a network of upper class mates  who are applying to health professions schools.

Keep open to all career options and majors.  Lots of high school graduates coming to college are thinking about medical school.  This is one profession with which we are all familiar.  The great thing about your undergraduate years is that (if we are doing a good job) you will be exposed to lots of interesting courses in new fields of study.  Some of these may be fields that you had never heard of before or areas in which classes were never available to you before.   You may   decide to work towards a different career goal during your years here.  It might be that you want the freedom to seek answers to questions in research instead of clinical practice.  Some will follow new curricular loves and work towards new careers.  Some will learn of, or otherwise decide to seek a non-medical school career in healthcare such as Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, or Dentistry.

Start to think about internships or other involvement with healthcare in your future years at Rhodes.  Experience that will be beneficial can be gained through internships, work, or volunteer opportunities.  All of which are readily available to you in the coming years.  Plan ahead as some of these will take a term to set up, apply for, or complete a required orientation.  If you are interested in our George Washington Medical School Early Selection program, you will need to start healthcare experience your first year.

Start to think about or initiate community service.  Many opportunities exist and are readily available to you.  Some will fulfill professional experience as well.  Others will allow you to demonstrate your empathy and values of service.  Some of these will take a term to set up, apply for, or complete a required orientation.

Start reading the appropriate “essentials” handbook and Jr/Sn timelines NOW

Sophomore

Continue with prerequisites for your professional school.

Select a major.  You will be required to declare a major by Feb/March of this year.  Most professional schools don’t require a particular major.  They only require specific course work.  For example medical schools do not care what your major is, only that you excel in the science work that you do and that you complete the required (and some recommended) science courses.  In addition, most professional schools want demonstration of good reading, comprehension, synthesis, writing and speaking skills.  All desire good interpersonal and group skills.

For some careers, it is hard to prepare and take all of the required science requirements without being a science major.

Keep thinking about who you could ask to write recommendation letters for you.  Continue to work with professors who you might want to ask to write for you when you apply.

Get involved in a hospital or clinic experience/internship.  Some hands-on experience in your chosen profession, whether it comes from an internship, volunteer position, or job, is required to be competitive.  This will be a requirement of a set number of hours with mentor signatures for some professions.  Even when stated as a strong recommendation in other professions, this is really best thought of as a requirement.  Most students find time for credit based internships only after their sophomore year.  But remember any experience can be counted and all of it will be considered by the health profession schools.

Please look at the Junior Schedule Documents
One for Pre-Med: Time Line Jr & Sn PreMed
Another for all other Health Professions Schools and Veterinary Medicine: Time Line Jr & Sn NOT PreMed