Your early orientation to a career in medicine

Our dual admission program is a selective academic opportunity created for highly motivated and focused students. You can apply for admission to WashU both for your chosen undergraduate degree program and for medical school.

The School of Medicine consistently ranks among the top in the nation, so standards for admission are high. We are looking for passionate and driven first-year applicants, including international students. Transfer students are not eligible to apply.

We seek students with:

  • commitment to community, compassion, aptitude, integrity, and motivation suitable for a career in medicine
  • outstanding academic records
  • demonstrated leadership skills in their high school’s academic and extracurricular activities

If you change your mind and decide not to attend medical school, you’ll still have great choices for an outstanding education. In addition, you may defer enrollment into your undergraduate studies and/or your graduate studies by up to two years each.

The University Scholars Program is a selective academic opportunity, not a scholarship program. However, students will be considered for division-based academic scholarships and are encouraged to apply for our Signature Scholar Programs. University Scholars are also eligible to apply for financial assistance on the same basis as other applicants.

Application Process

  • Apply for admission to the Class of 2024.
  • Log in to your WashU Pathway account to submit the separate application for the University Scholars Program in Medicine.
  • Write a brief answers (150 words or less) to the following questions:
    • Why are you interested in pursuing a career in medicine? Describe any life and/or medically-related experiences that have sparked this interest, as well as any personal attributes that make you especially suited for a medical career.
    • Briefly summarize any research or medical experience and how it has impacted you. (Please do not submit research documents.)
  • Submit an additional (third) letter of recommendation from a member of your community who can speak to your research experience or interest in the field of healthcare. If you submit an “other” letter of recommendation through the Common Application or Coalition Application, that letter may be used.
  • All applications must be submitted by January 2, 2020, and complete in our office by January 6, 2020. For best consideration, we encourage you to submit your applications by December 15, 2019.
  • The University Scholars Committee will interview selected finalists, who will need to come to campus for interviews and related activities during finalists’ weekend, March 26-29, 2020. Washington University will pay for finalists’ round-trip expenses within the United States and their expenses while in St. Louis. Those who are named University Scholars will be notified shortly after finalists’ weekend. Those not selected as a finalist may still be admitted to one of Washington University’s outstanding undergraduate divisions.

Program Highlights

From your first year as an undergraduate, you’ll:

  • Be guided by a mentor in the School of Medicine 
  • Engage in research
  • Receive personal pre-professional advising
  • Get to “shadow” a medical student or physician 
  • Receive invitations to special lectures and events held by the School of Medicine.

To continue to medical school as a University Scholar, you will need to fulfill all entrance requirements. Your pre-professional advisor will work with you as an undergraduate to make sure that you fulfill the prerequisites for medical school. You will also need to maintain an overall minimum 3.8 grade point average (GPA) and achieve a minimum total score on the Medical College Admissions Test (equal to or above the 97th percentile). If your GPA or MCAT are below this minimum, your eligibility for graduate study will be up to the School of Medicine’s discretion.

Pre-Med Studies at WashU

You’ll have a wide range of choices for your undergraduate area of study. Majoring in one of the natural sciences or engineering is traditional, but majors in the humanities and social sciences are equally welcome.  Our pre-med advisors in the College of Arts & Sciences and in McKelvey School of Engineering will work with you to ensure you’re prepared for medical school.

As an undergraduate, you’ll need to complete at least a year of each of the following:

  • Biological science 
  • General or inorganic chemistry 
  • Organic chemistry 
  • Physics 
  • Mathematics through differential calculus

You’ll also get to participate in research with faculty at the School of Medicine. These opportunities are ideal if you’d like to get a head start on cutting-edge biomedical research. Our students also have great opportunities to study abroad.

Medical School Studies

As a medical student at WashU, you’ll receive an education among the very best in the world. You’ll be taught the scientific basis of medicine and the most up-to-date clinical care, one-on-one with faculty.

Your first-year courses will address normal human structure and function, neurosciences, physiology, cell biology, and genetics. In your second year, you’ll focus on the effects of disease on body structure and function.  You’ll complete core clinical clerkships during your third year, while fourth-year studies will be fully elective. Issues of medical humanities and ethics are integrated throughout the four-year curriculum. Students that participate in the program may choose to study abroad.

Our rigorous academic programs are supported by student-centered teaching approaches such as:

  • Traditional lectures and laboratory 
  • Small-group interaction 
  • Self-directed learning 

Patient contact will begin right from your first month, and your clinical experience will be integrated with courses in pathology, pathophysiology, and pharmacology. Our extensive computer network also provides you with access to the latest computerized learning tools.

Our graduates go on to complete their residencies at top university-affiliated hospitals, including our own Medical Center. They pursue successful careers in primary care, medical specialties, academic medicine, and clinical and basic research.