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    Jul 19, 2024  
2024-2025 Undergraduate Bulletin 
2024-2025 Undergraduate Bulletin

Pre-Health Program

Hamline’s Pre-Health program is designed for students interested in the health science professions. Hamline graduates have set an enviable record in gaining admission to top medical, dental, veterinary, pharmacy, and other professional schools nationally. The program advisors and other Hamline faculty are committed to supporting and encouraging the professional goals of all promising students who desire a career in the health professions. Advisors assist students in career planning and designing a suitable program of study. A committee consisting of faculty and staff aids students in applying to medical or other health science professional schools.

Students interested in the Pre-Health program should contact one of the program advisors early in their first semester at Hamline.

For more information about the Pre-Health program, including pre-pharmacy, pre-medical, pre-vet, pre-dental, pre-nursing, and other programs, see


  • Kathy Burleson, senior lecturer, Biology
  • Irina Makarevitch, professor, Biology
  • Betsy Martinez-Vaz, professor, Biology
  • Bonnie Ploger, professor, Biology


Pre-Health Program Requirements

Requirements for many post-graduate health care programs differ and students should inquire with advisors about specific course requirements for specific schools and professional training programs.

Below is a general set of requirements designed to be guidelines for students interested in applying to medical schools. It represents  a standard core of undergraduate study required by most U.S. medical colleges.

  • one year college math
  • one year college English
  • one year college biology
  • two years college chemistry (general chemistry and organic chemistry)
  • one year college physics
  • one semester biochemistry
  • upper division courses in humanities and social sciences areas

In addition, some medical colleges require a course in analytical chemistry (CHEM 3240).

Coursework in genetics (BIOL 3050) and Cell Biology (BIOL 3060) is highly recommended. A suggested four-year sequence of Hamline courses for pre-medical students is outlined below. (Note: Pre-med students planning to major in Chemistry or Biochemistry should take Math 1170 and 1180 in the first year.)

First year Fall term:

Along with the first-year seminar, students should complete:

And one approved statistics or mathematics course:

Fourth year Fall term:

Students should complete major and elective courses

Fourth year Spring term:

Students should complete major and elective courses

Choice of major:

Pre-health students may choose from any of Hamline’s major fields. While many pre-health students declare a major in biology, chemistry, or biochemistry, Hamline students who combine the required pre-health coursework with a major in another area (e.g., philosophy or psychology) have been equally successful in gaining admission into medical school.

Application procedure:

Application procedure differs for different pre-health programs and students talk to their pre-health advisors about the details.  Below is the outline of the application process for medical schools.

Ideally, students should complete the pre-medical core of studies by the end of their third year. During late spring or summer of the third year, students take the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). Also at that time, students begin the process of submitting required materials to the Hamline pre-medical committee for their medical school application file. Students must select the schools to which they wish to apply, must secure 4-5 letters of reference from faculty and others, and must compose their personal statement, describing their genuine commitment to the medical profession. Success in gaining entrance to medical school is enhanced by several factors: (1) a high cumulative grade point average; (2) a high MCAT score; (3) indication of personal strengths, social and communication skills; (4) commitment toward a medical career (as evidenced by participation in medically related extracurricular and volunteer activities); and (5) strong leadership and community service in diverse areas, including activities outside of medicine. Experience working with underserved populations is highly desirable.