Did you know that North Carolina is home to some of the best medical schools in the United States?
It would only make sense that a line of fantastic pre-med programs in the same state feed into these prestigious institutions.
Pre-medical students across the country can expect a rigorous curriculum during their undergraduate years.
While it is true that pre-medical students should excel in courses such as chemistry, biology, and anatomy, pre-medical students are generally capable of and motivated to specialize in a variety of subject areas.
One of the biggest hurdles on the pre-med journey? The MCAT® (Medical College Admission Test) is a multiple-choice standardized test designed to assess candidates’ readiness for a career in healthcare. Many medical schools base their admissions decisions in part on applicants’ MCAT® scores.
Other factors influencing admission include letters of recommendation, a record of field experiences and volunteer efforts, and an impressive academic background.
Fortunately, the best pre-medical schools in North Carolina are backed by strong pre-professional advising programs.
Many students at these schools receive a dedicated advisor throughout their four years of college, while others are able to take advantage of scholarships reserved explicitly for pre-med or pre-health students.
All schools on this list provided 50 or more medical school applicants in the past year, according to the Association of Medical Schools.
Without further ado, we present the best pre-medical schools in North Carolina!
The University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill (Chapel Hill, NC)
UNC is one of the nation’s leading producers of pre-medical students.
Above 600 students apply annually to UNC’s own medical school, so the institution recognizes the competitive level of the admissions process and aims to prepare its pre-medical students accordingly.
UNC undergraduates have long discussed the rigor of required science classes, such as organic chemistry, which sometimes seems to serve a “elimination” service.
Many UNC students begin their college careers with existing AP credit or dual enrollment: having an entry-level biology or chemistry credit allows them to take higher-level classes in a earlier point in their academic journeys.
Many pre-medical students at UNC also seek internships or job shadowing experiences in the summer semesters.
Undecided about embarking on a pre-med path? It’s a commitment, and UNC recognizes it.
the school offers health professions exploration courses it is worth a single credit and is graded on a pass/fail basis. AHSC 200 – Introduction to Allied Health Sciences – exposes participants to various health professions, enlightening them on the different ways they can use a medical degree.
Duke University (Durham, North Carolina)
Just a few miles from UNC, Duke University offers equally impressive options for pre-med students.
The Advice from the Office of Health Professions is an important support network for Duke pre-med students.
In the first two years at Duke, advisors help students explore opportunities within the world of health professions and take relevant courses.
In the junior and senior years, students prepare for the MCAT and the medical school admissions cycle while continuing their development in advanced classes.
Pre-health students specialize in typical subjects such as chemistry and biology; That said, it’s totally acceptable to major in history, a foreign language, or international politics as a pre-med student!
Duke also organizes study abroad experiences aimed at pre-health students in Costa Rica, China and Spain, to name a few. In these experiences, students work in research laboratories and conduct independent study. Others may volunteer in community health settings or tutor in schools.
Duke can claim that most of its graduating seniors are accepted annually to prestigious medical schools.
Duke recommends that all pre-health students participate in some job shadowing experience so that they can gain a real insight into the daily responsibilities and dynamics of a health career.
North Carolina State University (Raleigh, NC)
The Advice on Health Professions The NC State University team stands ready to arm students with interview tips, assistance with personal statements, exploration of health professional schools, and academic course selection, among other services.
At NCSU, undergraduate pre-health students do not follow a set pre-health curriculum; instead, they chase course work in a higher interest academic major while taking a solid foundation of classes in the natural sciences. Students are also encouraged to take courses focused on improving their technical writing skills.
NC State recognizes that competitive medical school candidates must have significant clinical experience.
The school helps pre-medical students gain field experiences in personal health care offices, free community health clinics, hospital offices, professional schools, and within major hospital systems such as Duke Health, UNC Health, and WakeMed Health. .
Still not sure about a pre-med pathway at NCSU? The students can join Pre-Health Student Club, attend the annual Spring Health Professions Fair or make an appointment to speak with a Health Professions Advising representative.
Wake Forest University (Winston-Salem, North Carolina)
Many pre-medical students are drawn to Wake Forest’s Early Assurance program (EAP).
After completing their second year, students can apply for early acceptance into Wake Forest School of Medicine. If accepted, they are guaranteed entry into the institution after completing their senior year.
Knowing where the light is at the end of the pre-med tunnel can eliminate the significant stress that accompanies the competitive medical school admissions challenge.
Of course, there are eligibility requirements: applicants must meet or exceed a 509 on the MCAT and have a 3.5 Overall GPA and Science GPA of 3.5.
All Wake Forest pre-med students will declare a major at the end of their sophomore year; the advisory recommends that students focus on an area in which they are strongest, rather than majoring twice in two science-related subjects, for example.
The school’s admissions committee certainly values quality over quantity of academic performance.
East Carolina University (Greenville, NC)
Each ECU pre-med student receives a appointed adviser who will support them throughout their undergraduate careers: This person is the point of contact for questions about pre-med prerequisites, the medical school application process, and field experience opportunities.
While pre-medical students may pursue any academic specialty, the bachelor’s degree in public health is a popular option, enrolling nearly 900 students each fall semester.
This degree pathway trains pre-medical students in hospitals, clinics, communities, and non-profit organizations. In addition, major students complete experiential learning opportunities in schools, government offices, and private companies.
In addition to pre-med, ECU offers pre-professional pathways in areas such as dentistry, physical therapy, and veterinary medicine. Several student organizations they exist to support pre-medical students in their academic journeys and provide outlets for field experiences.
One such group, Health4PINE, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting health awareness among young adults living in the community. At the same time, ECU Project Sunshine facilitates creative and social learning opportunities for pediatric patients living in a medical environment.
Davidson College (Davidson, North Carolina)
Davidson College’s own Brody School of Medicine, open exclusively to North Carolina residents, received more than 1,200 applications last year and only accepted 7% of that cohort.
Understanding how competitive the admissions process is, Davidson has launched several initiatives to help prepare its undergraduate students for admission to top medical schools.
For example, the Summer Program for Future Physicians (SPDF) exposes pre-medical participants to a rigorous and challenging curriculum designed to reflect the demands of medical school.
Approximately 30 pre-medical students have the opportunity to participate in this eight-week program, which includes opportunities to collaborate with faculty in laboratory settings.
The PAC is another way Davidson eases the transition to medical school for pre-medical students.
Essentially, the Premedical/Presanitary Advisory Committee (CAP) evaluates each pre-medical student based on their academic record, devotion to a medical career, and ethical responses to a series of hypotheses.
Students seek these evaluations with the intention of using constructive feedback to increase their competitiveness in the medical school application cycle.
The University of North Carolina–Wilmington (Wilmington, NC)
Located on the North Carolina coast, UNC Wilmington connects pre-health college students with a variety of training, scheduling, and planning resources. Students can focus on one of 12 areasincluding vision, occupational therapy and pharmacy.
UNC-W seeks pre-med students as young as high school ninth graders!
Interdisciplinary Health Education for Aspiring Leaders (iHEAL) exposes students living in rural and underrepresented communities to exciting careers and specializations related to the healthcare industry, opening their minds to potential career paths.
Once enrolled, pre-medical students can take advantage of the unique partnerships formed within the UNC network of universities.
For example, UNC-W partnered with the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy to innovate a Early Guarantee Program for pre-pharmacy students.
This opportunity grants participating students the opportunity to connect with advisors as early as one semester prior to joining the doctoral program.