North Park University’s pre-professional track for medicine is a sequence of courses and advising that will give you a solid foundation for your applications to competitive medical schools around the country. The pre-medicine track should accompany a major—most often biology, chemistry, or physics—where you’ll gain a foundational knowledge of life sciences and the human body.
Pre-medicine students are advised by faculty in the Biology Department, often Dr. Jeff Nelson. Dr. Nelson is himself a North Park alum and received his MD from the University of Illinois College of Medicine in 1984. He’ll talk with you about your particular interests in medicine, and help you stay on track throughout your program at North Park. Because of small class sizes at North Park, Dr. Nelson and your other professors will get to know you, your professional goals and interests, and work with you one-on-one to find the best courses and experiences to help you reach those goals. Our Pre-Professional Committee—a group of faculty in the science departments—will work with you to make sure you are prepared for your applications and interviews for medical school.
Course Sequences and Activities
We recommend you take the following courses alongside your major and Core Curriculum requirements to prepare for medical schools and a career in healthcare. Some courses may also meet major/Core Curriculum requirements.
Recommended Core Courses
Introduction to Human Anatomy
Introduction to Cell Biology
- Introductory Chemistry I and II
One year of physics
- One semester of biochemistry
- Two semesters of organic chemistry
- Either Genetics or Molecular Biology
- Two of the following: Microbiology, Histology, or Embryology
- Students typically take the MCAT in the summer following the third year. Medical schools also typically look for internship and/or research experience on their applications. Your faculty advisors will work with you to find opportunities that fit into your schedule and align with your goals.
- During the fourth year, students should re-take the MCAT if necessary and begin medical school applications and interviews
Dr. Calla Holmgren graduated from North Park in 1995 with a BS in biology. Now an obstetrician specializing in maternal-fetal medicine and safe labor practices, she vividly remembers her faculty advisors mentoring her through her pre-medicine track and encouraging her learning and creativity. Along with her medical practice, Dr. Holmgren volunteers as a physician with Medical Team International. She has remained close to North Park through the years by volunteering on our Board of Trustees and regularly recommending students to the University because she believes that the best preparation for a career in the sciences is the liberal arts.
Read more about Dr. Holmgren.
The Nancy and G. Timothy Johnson Center for Science and Community Life
The Johnson Center is North Park's new 101,000-square-foot facility equipped with 30 state-of-the-art labs and technology-enhanced classrooms for our science and pre-professional students. The biology, chemistry, physics, psychology, and mathematics departments are housed in these new learning spaces. Built to meet LEED-certification standards for environmental responsibility in construction and operation, the Johnson Center is a hub of scientific life at North Park and a stunning addition to the campus community.
More about the Johnson Center