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Graduate Certificate Premedical Program FAQs

Graduate Certificate Premedical Program FAQs

Is the MCAT required for acceptance?

No, the MCAT is not required for admission to the program.  Many students enter the program having never taken the MCAT.  Others enter with a lower MCAT score, and improve their score while enrolled in the program.  However, students who enter the program having already obtained the benchmark MCAT score are at a distinct advantage in that they can focus solely of course grades.  Therefore it is strongly advised that students at least attempt the MCAT prior to matriculation into the program.

Is there a MCAT preparation class within the program?

The program does not contain an MCAT preparatory class.  However, personalized advice for MCAT study is provided and class schedules are arranged to facilitate MCAT preparation.

I have taken the MCAT multiple times. Which MCAT score do you consider?

Your most recent MCAT is the score that will be counted toward the benchmarks for the program.  When the most recent MCAT does not meet the benchmark, but a previous MCAT does, consideration will be given on a case-by-case basis.  Scores greater than 3 years old will not be considered.

I have taken the MCAT multiple times and if you pick my highest score in each section over the multiple exams, these numbers add to the benchmark MCAT score. Will this count toward my benchmarks?

What you are describing is known as a composite MCAT score and this does not count toward meeting the MCAT benchmark for the program.

What percentage of your students is accepted into medical school?

The program curriculum was reset in the fall of 2012, so data beginning with the Class of 2013 is the best predictor for future classes.

Does the program accept students interested in other health professions such as pre-dentistry or pre-pharmacy?

At this time, no.  Simply stated, we do not have the track record nor the relationships built with non-medical programs to facilitate high levels of acceptance.

Are your students accepted into medical programs other than VCOM?

Yes, we routinely have students accepted at other medical schools.

Can I hold a job while in the program?

The program is intense and will require your maximum effort to be successful.  Therefore employment during the program is strongly discouraged.

Is an interview required?

An in-person interview is not required. 

My overall or science GPA is below 2.9. Can I still be accepted to the program?

We cannot accept students with lower than a 2.9 overall or science GPA.  The average GPA within the program is typically in the 3.2 range, with a 3.0 GPA generally needed to be competitive for acceptance. 

Do I need to have completed all pre-requisites before entering the VCOM program?

Yes, this is an absolute requirement and it includes any prerequisite classes taken during the summer in which you enter the program.

What is the cost of the program?

Please see our Tuition and Financial Aid page for more information regarding costs, fees, and an estimated budget.

What is the cost to apply to the program?

There is a $27 application that is included as part of the online application.  A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required upon acceptance into the program.

Are scholarships available?

No.  We do not have scholarships for the program at this time.

Are loans available to cover the cost of the program?

The program is not eligible for federal student loans.  Private loans are available.  For more information, see Tuition and Financial Aid

Is on-campus housing available?

No. VCOM does not have student housing.  However, there are many apartment units within walking distance to campus and Blacksburg, being a college town, has an abundance of other housing options as well.

How large is your class?

The program is capped at 120 students per year.

How many applications does the program receive each year?

We expect to receive over 400 applications for the current application cycle.

Is the Graduate Certificate Premedical Program offered at all three VCOM campuses?

No.  It is currently only offered at the Virginia campus, but successful students may gain acceptance to the other VCOM campuses.

Do I have choice of which VCOM campus I attend for medical school?

Students who meet the benchmarks in December will be offered a seat in the DO Program at one VCOM campus based primarily on the permanent address as given on the original application for the Graduate Certificate Premedical Program and the location of their undergraduate institution. The same criteria plus availability of openings applies to students accepted in the March or May reviews.

Do you accept international students?

VCOM does not accept international students into the Graduate Certificate Premedical Program.  All students must be U.S. Citizens or permanent residents.

Are VCOM students also Virginia Tech students?

No.  VCOM is a private institution and the Virginia campus is partially located on the Virginia Tech campus within the Corporate Research Center.  However, within the Graduate Certificate Premedical Program, a portion of your tuition will be used to pay the Virginia Tech student fee, allowing you access to many VT facilities and extra-curricular programs.