Many students aspire to become physicians. But as you may know, the path is difficult. In the United States, it often takes 11-15 years after high school: 4 years of college, 4 years of medical school, and 3-7 years of residency in your chosen specialty.
One of the most difficult parts of the process is simply gaining admission into medical school after college. Unfortunately, some students who want to become physicians often end up not pursuing their dream because they are unable to gain acceptance into med school.
Medical school admission is extremely competitive — acceptance rates are often less than 5%.
Medical schools often look for students with a premed background, a high GPA, a high MCAT score, basic science research experience, clinical experience, and international volunteering experience. Even with all of that, students often need to take 1 to 2 years off after college in order to do more research before they can gain admission into med school. In other words, students need to work extremely hard during undergrad in order to get into medical school.
But what if I told you there is a way to bypass this process? Approximately 50 universities across the nation have combined medical programs — also known as BS/MD or BA/MD programs. High school students who are accepted into these programs are guaranteed a spot in med school. Essentially, these programs let you skip the rat race of medical school admissions.
However, BS/MD programs are very competitive as well. Because there are only a few seats in each program, acceptance rates to these programs are often less than 5%. High school students who gain admission into these programs often have high GPAs, competitive SAT scores, hospital volunteer experience, research experience, and community service. Students who are able to get into one of these programs often have a much better undergraduate experience than their fellow premed classmates. I recommend that all high school students who are fairly certain they would like to pursue a career in medicine consider these programs.
Some well-known BS/MD programs include combined programs at Northwestern, Brown, and Boston University. I will release a complete list of universities in the next week or so. Be on the lookout!