If you’re studying towards a medical degree and considering an ideal pre-Med college, here are the 10 best Pre Med colleges in USA.
For aspiring Pre-med students, choosing a Pre-Med college school is the first major step on the path to becoming a medical doctor. The college you choose will determine the best opportunities and support networks you will get. So, it’s crucial to make the right choice.
We’ve covered important details on what Pre-Med colleges are, factors to consider when picking a college as a Pre-Med, and the best 10 Pre Med colleges in USA.
What is Pre-Med?
Pre-med is a college track made up of specific courses that a student chooses to take as prerequisite courses for medical school. It’s almost related to a major. Students can decide to major in any field of their choice, but they are required to take all of the required pre-med courses to stay on the pre-med track.
Courses related to the medical field, such as Biology or Chemistry are what most pre-med students choose to major in.
The purpose of pre-med experience is to prepare you for a bigger goal: medical school. The pre-med college you choose should have a pre-med track that can guarantee success in you getting a high GPA, scoring high on the MCAT, building a strong resume, and completing the application (including rec letters and essays) and interview.
Picking a College as a Pre-Med: Factors to Consider
Your GPA is very important when it comes to med school. A strong GPA supersedes class rank or position so you should be looking for colleges where you can perform well.
Most medical schools follow a mathematical formula to assess students. This formula takes in the numerical value of GPA. For example, having a 3.9 GPA and ranking #35 in your class is better than a 3.5 GPA and being #15 in your class for the sake of getting admitted into medical school.
This does not mean that you shouldn’t aim to be amongst the brilliant students on campus. GPA is important, but class rank shouldn’t be left out. Most college classes are graded in such a way that being at the top of your class gives you a high GPA. For example, it’s better to have a 3.95 GPA at Bates College than a 3.35 GPA at Princeton. Moreover, narrow down to schools that have moderate to strong grade inflation and avoid schools that have grade deflation.
Science GPA plays a vital role in med school admissions, and at the same time, the rigor of your major is very crucial. A high GPA in an “easy” major won’t be enough; a rigorous course load will still be needed to validate a high GPA.
Additionally, you should generally avoid your state’s flagship university because they have many academically competitive students who didn’t have the financial means or extracurricular activities to attend top-tier universities. So getting As in your pre-med classes will be a lot harder.
A good MCAT score is also important for medical school admission. Look for a college with a good curriculum that will teach and prepare you well for the MCAT exam. MCAT science materials are covered by most colleges through their pre-med classes. However, also ensure that the college you choose has good sociology, psychology, and general education English classes that cover in-depth reading techniques. The college that reinforces these other MCAT components helps a student perform much better in MCAT.
Med school requires financial commitment for a student and his/her family. Most families will prefer to save money on undergraduate studies so they can afford to pay $200,000 throughout the four years of med school. Luckily, top-tier colleges usually offer at least some assistance to families with under $200,000 per year in household income and grant great financial aid. There is a lot of competition in flagship state schools so it’s not recommended you apply to those. Explore private schools that offer a strong merit aid package.
Pre-med school and medical school combined require 10-12 years of commitment to school, residencies, and fellowships. This can be very hard for even the most passionate and brilliant students. If by the time you apply you’re still unsure, apply to schools that will easily allow you to switch majors and programs without you applying internally. So you might want to apply to the most competitive school possible and get admitted to a good school regardless of if you’re on the pre-med track.
Extracurricular Activities & Letters of Recommendation
A good resume should include activities that are meaningful and relevant to you as a potential med school student and not just about generically impressive activities and awards. It’s necessary to have lots of patient care experience, ideally through formal internships or shadowing.
It is also important your resume contains Biology-specific or medical research. Volunteer in the local community or try to work with different groups of people from various socioeconomic backgrounds. This can be a very helpful experience during your essay and interview questions.
Location is also important when picking a college. A college next to or in a city that has a robust medical industry will offer lots of opportunities.
Best 10 Pre Med Colleges in USA
1. Harvard College
Location: Cambridge, MA
U.S. News Ranking: 2
Acceptance rate: 4.5%
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1460-1580 SAT, 33-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 6,788
Harvard college is located in Cambridge, MA, and has some of the smartest students in the world, numerous Boston medical facilities, and groups. Harvard offers a lot of invaluable teachings to its pre-med students. The college’s grade inflation is rampant, and the median grade is an A-. It’s first on our list of best pre-med colleges.
2. Johns Hopkins University
Acceptance rate: 4.9%
U.S. News Ranking: 9
Undergraduate enrollment: 6256
Johns Hopkins is one of the most reputable medical schools and an institution for medical research. Its solid reputation has been maintained throughout the years.
The university’s med school is affiliated with a teaching hospital considered one of the best in the US. A student at Johns Hopkins has the opportunity to use a variety of clinical and research facilities. Additionally, it is where the International Medical Aid was founded and is currently a stellar NGO that provides pre-med internships to anyone lucky to join.
Johns Hopkins University has an advising program track for their undergraduate pre-med students that include group meetings, personal appointments, and a variety of other programs designed to help anyone who aspires to be a student of med-school to succeed. Undergraduate pre-med school students can also build their resumes through well-organized, student organizations.
There is a total undergraduate enrollment of 6256 students at Johns Hopkins University.
3. Duke University
Acceptance rate: 7.8%
U.S. News Ranking: 10
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1500-1560 SAT, 33-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 6,682
Duke is a very academically competitive college located in Durham, NC. It boasts a high 85% med school acceptance rate and students have access to a wide variety of resources, such as personalized advising to research and internship opportunities. This is provided by Durham and Duke’s prestigious School of Medicine.
4. Columbia University
Columbia university acceptance rate 2021: 5.8%
Undergraduate enrollment: 6,245
Columbia University offers a sample pre-med course curriculum that is meant to assist you in meeting the minimum applications set for medical school applications. The university also has top-notch services, designed specifically to advise pre-med students, and assist them in getting and maintaining a competitive edge. This edge will be required when you finally decide to submit your medical school application and get admitted
Columbia’s Medical School is ranked 31st when it comes to primary care and 6th best medical school based on research. A pre-med advisor is assigned to an undergraduate of this university which gives an opportunity to gain immensely from informative meetings that have the Premedical Committee as a sponsor. You’ll have relatively easy access to various hospitals and clinics that offer countless opportunities for you to benefit from research and clinical experience because Columbia University is also conveniently located in NYC.
Columbia University’s total undergraduate enrollment is 6,245.
Unfortunately, just like Stanford, Columbia University doesn’t avail stats on the number of their graduates that eventually have successful admission into med school yearly.
5. University of Pennsylvania (UPenn)
Acceptance rate: 7.7%
U.S. News Ranking: 6
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1460-1550 SAT, 33-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 10,183
UPenn is one of the best pre-med schools in the USA, and it boasts up to a 76% med school acceptance rate. The university’s core pre-med courses and suggested courses emphasize all aspects of the test to prepare students well for the MCAT. Facilities like the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia are nearby so UPenn is an excellent location for pre-med students.
4. Washington University in Saint Louis (WashU)
Acceptance rate: 14%
U.S. News Ranking: 19
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1480-1550 SAT, 33-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 7,751
Washington University in St. Louis, MO offers pre-med students access to MCAT prep classes, mock interviews, writing workshops for med school applications, two local hospitals, and a four-year advising program. WashU provides constant hands-on assistance and meaningful research to ensure that their pre-med students are on the right path.
5. Rice University
Acceptance rate: 8.7%
U.S. News Ranking: 17
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1470-1560 SAT, 33-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 3,978
Rice University is located in Houston, TX, and provides a database of internship opportunities, relevant research, and pre-med advising orientations. Moreover, Rice’s Joint Admission Medical Program helps Texas students from low-income families to pay for med school. Houston has large hospitals that provide research and volunteering opportunities.
6. Stanford University
Acceptance rate: 4.4%
U.S. News Ranking: 6
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1420-1570 SAT, 32-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 7,087
Stanford University is located in Stanford, CA, and offers various extracurricular and research options to their undergraduate students. Sophomores, juniors, and seniors have the opportunity to shadow doctors at Stanford Hospital, Palo Alto VA Hospital, and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital through their Stanford Immersion in Medicine Series (SIMS) Program. It’s one of the best pre-med colleges in USA.
7. Northwestern University
Acceptance rate: 9.1%
U.S. News Ranking: 9
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1450-1540 SAT, 33-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 8,231
Northwestern is located in Evanston, IL and it offers pre-med students access to a wealth of resources through the school’s Health Professions Advising. This includes local shadowing opportunities and MCAT advice/training to GPA calculators. Northwestern completely prepares its pre-med students for med school.
8. Brown University
Acceptance rate: 7.1%
U.S. News Ranking: 14
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1420-1550 SAT, 32-35 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 7,043
Brown University is located in Providence, RI. It offers pre-med students lots of resources such as clinical experience and volunteer opportunities, to get experience in the medical field. Students also get the opportunity to get hands-on experience working with Brown EMS as an EMT.
Brown is a great option for students who want to complete medical school science course prerequisites while pursuing a non-STEM major. There’s an open curriculum; no general education requirements are required, and students can take any course they want, as long as they finish their major requirements.
9. Amherst College
Acceptance rate: 11.3%
U.S. News Ranking: 2 in National Liberal Arts Colleges
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1420-1530 SAT, 31-34 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 1,855
Amherst is located in Amherst, MA, and it’s one of the best pre-med colleges in USA perfect for pre-med students who want to major in a non-STEM subject. Beyond that, Amherst is a strong choice as a liberal arts college.
The university’s smaller enrollment and emphasis on undergraduate education help the students know their professors well, thereby leading to stronger mentorship and standout letters of recommendation. There’s also access to pre-med advisors who want.
10. Case Western Reserve University (CWRU)
Acceptance rate: 29%
U.S. News Ranking: 40
Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1370-1490 SAT, 30-34 ACT
Undergraduate Enrollment: 5,262
Last on our list of best pre-med colleges in USA is Case Western Reserve University. It is located in Cleveland, OH, right next to the world-famous Cleveland Clinic, the University Hospitals, and Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center.
At CWRU, students get numerous research and volunteering opportunities as well as gain clinical experience through the campus’ EMS team. They can also work in the local nursing homes, hospice care facilities, or patient recovery houses.
What college has the best pre-med program in the US?
Harvard College has the best pre-med program in the US. It offers a peer pre-med advising program and has very strong biological sciences departments.
What is the best pre-med major?
The top five popular science majors for pre-med are Biology ( general and other) Biochemistry. Neurobiology.
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