Quick Contact

Steven H. Denison, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Biology
Pre-Health Advisor

Eckerd College
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711

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toll-free: (800) 456-9009
fax: (727) 864-8060

Pre-Health

Pre-Health

Example Pre-Health Timeline

Gaining admission and finding success in medical school and related fields of study is a long and challenging process. Like most endeavors in life there are no magic bullets or quick shortcuts to getting accepted to medical school. It takes a good plan, hard work, and dedication to making sure you are taking the proper steps to help you reach your goal. The following plan outlines what you should be doing or considering as you navigate your way through your undergraduate degree to prepare for medical school.

Freshman Year

  • Talk with your Autumn Term Advisor to schedule your first semester classes
  • Meet with Premed Advisor/learn premed requirements
  • Think about major and minor
  • Plan a tentative degree plan for the next 3 ½ years
  • Develop study skills and maintain excellent GPA
  • Begin extracurricular activities and participate in premed club
  • Get AAMC's MCAT Student Manual for subject outlines
  • Review medical school admission requirements
  • Work/volunteer in medical area
  • Subscribe to medical student journals and read interesting books about medicine
  • Challenge yourself to get a summer internship/volunteer job working with patients

Sophomore Year

  • Work/volunteer in medical area
  • Meet with premed advisor to discuss your progress
  • Fine tune your schedule and degree plan with your mentor
  • Maintain excellent GPA
  • Check medical school's entry requirements
  • Consider participating in research
  • Consider what you will do this summer
  • Apply to MMEP (minorities only)
  • Study for MCAT (summer before junior year only if Physics with a Lab is completed)
  • Apply for MCAT (if you will take it early)
  • Plan for any special junior-year program (ie. Junior year abroad)

Junior Year

  • Study for MCAT (if not yet taken)
  • Apply for MCAT (if not yet taken)
  • Take MCAT in either spring or summer, scores are reported about 30 days after test is taken
  • Meet with premed advisor and maintain the best GPA you can
  • December-Check websites and begin personal statement
  • Gather information about med schools you are interested applying to
  • Get AMCAS/AACOMAS/other applications
  • Request letters of recommendation from 2 science and 1 non-science faculty to be sent to the Chair of the Pre-Health Professions Committee (Prof. Denison).
  • Work/volunteer in medical area and consider what you will do this summer
  • Meet with pre-med committee in the spring semester.
  • May-AMCAS opens for data entry but submission is mid-June
  • June-AMCAS starts accepting applications
  • June-Premed committee writes cover letter and attaches all letters
  • If not happy with scores, register for upcoming MCAT
  • Visit nearby schools in which you are interested
  • Apply for Early Acceptance Program (optional)

Senior Year

  • October 15-All schools vary on final deadline but earliest would be middle of October to apply to AMCAS (which governs medical school application process)
  • Work/volunteer in medical area and maintain the best GPA you can
  • Take MCAT to improve scores if needed
  • Confirm that schools have received your application materials and letters
  • Complete secondary medical school applications and inform Career Services on where to send your letters
  • Interview at medical schools and complete financial aid forms
  • If wait-listed, send letter confirming interest
  • Consider what you will do this summer (keep options open)
  • ACCEPT OFFER (by May 15)
  • Accept additional offers if higher on your Must Want Analysis list: withdraw previous acceptances
  • Write thank you letters to medical school interviewers, references and all advisors who helped you
  • If you do not get accepted consider Post-Bac, Summer Enrichment, and Masters Programs to strengthen your application


Formula to predict competitive applicant: Science GPA X 10 + MCAT = >65

Medical School?

Whether you're thinking of allopathic medicine, veterinary medicine, osteopathic medicine or dentistry, our Pre-Health Program can help put you on your path to medical school and beyond. 63% of all qualified Eckerd students gain acceptance to US allopathic (MD) medical schools.