Is an SMP necessary?

Hi JCrom here,

I wanted to know if a special masters program would be unnecessary for my situation.

I’m a 29-year-old nontrad taking prereqs at a community college here in Pittsburgh, PA. Currently, I have completed a year of Bio with A’s, finishing this semester of Chem 1 and Physics 1 with A’s, taking Chem 2 and Physics 2 next semester, as well as OChem 1 and 2 in the summer. I also work full-time. I don’t have any past science courses from my UG and Grad school degree programs, so these are all fresh grades. I live within minutes of the University of Pittsburgh. Offered at UPitt is Biomedical masters program with a linkage to UPitt’s medical school (Interview only/No MCAT required). It’s a 12 month, 32-credit SMP.

The reason I am considering this program is, besides offering more advanced science courses, the program also offers research and shadowing opportunities (an aspect of this process I’m struggling to find) built into the curriculum. That’s the upside. The downside is- well, it’s a master’s program, so I’m looking at up to $30k in tuition for the year.

Getting into UPitt’s school of medicine (UPSOM) is not guaranteed at all, but if I keep this trending of A’s at the community college and take additional courses, like biochem and genetics and do well on the MCAT, should this carry enough weight in an application for me? I can’t say I’d find as much shadowing and research opportunities as I would be exposed to in the SMP, but I’m sure I can find something.

Thanks for the advice!!

Hi! Dr. Gray covered this on the podcast in Session #155! We hope we answered your questions on whether or not you should consider an SMP. If you have any other questions please feel free to post in the forum again.

Thank you,