The College of Medicine’s first undergraduate program starts this semester with 32 students enrolled in the new minor in medical sciences.
The program, taught by faculty across the College of Medicine, includes 18 semester credits with courses in biochemistry, community health, molecular genetics, pharmacology, statistics and more.
The selective program accepts junior and senior students at UC and aims to prepare them for professional programs in medicine, pharmacy, dentistry and doctoral and master’s programs in the life sciences.
"The one thing I’m so thrilled about is our students,” says program director and professor of molecular genetics Anil Menon, PhD. "We have a group of outstanding, truly unique students who have already accomplished so much.”
Menon says the program is structured to provide experiential learning through shadowing and research opportunities at the college. Menon says the ratio of mentors to students is particularly unique to UC’s program, providing one faculty mentor for each two students.
Nitya Sreevalsan is a junior majoring in neuropsychology with a Spanish minor and already accepted into the College of Medicine through the dual-admissions program. She attended an orientation for the program with other students and faculty Monday, Aug. 26, in the CARE/Crawley atrium.
"I’m interested in the advising aspect of the minor,” she says. "I know the College of Medicine has faculty who are very important in their fields. My biochemistry teacher is actually my advisor; I’m looking forward to that and I'm excited to get to work with them.”
Another incoming minor, Jessica Mace, is a student at the College of Allied Health Sciences. She chose the minor to be more prepared for medical school and gain the opportunity to shadow and rotate with physicians.
"We have a very structured course in health sciences,” she says, "We don’t have room for electives. The minor gives me an opportunity to take more medically focused electives and learn more about research.”
Speaking at the orientation, Dean Thomas Boat, MD, welcomed the students both into the program and into "a very exciting time in medical education.”
"You are pioneers in this new program. Our job is to get you the very best education you can get.”