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Frequently Asked Questions

Pre-Health Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ Bubble with PeopleBelow are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive in the Pre-Health Office, broken into several broad categories. If you do not see your question answered here, please send your question to

Recently Accepted to Hunter College

Q: Can I use AP credits to fulfill my Pre-Health requirements?

A: If AP credit is used to place out of an introductory science course, we recommend that you supplement that course with an upper level course with a laboratory component. Speak with a Pre-Health Advisor to be sure that your course work will fulfill the pre-requisites for health professions schools.

Q: What science credits can I transfer to Hunter from my previous institution?

A: Please contact the Hunter College's Admissions Office to determine which science credits will transfer from your previous institution.

Q: Is the Pre-Health program a major at Hunter?

A: The Pre-Health Program is a track or independent path of study; it is not a major.

Q: Do I have to major in a science?

A: Pre-Health students can choose any major, but will need to take the pre-requisite requirements for their chosen health profession, in addition to their major requirements. If you are receiving Financial Aid, you may want to choose a major that includes the Pre-Med requirements as certain forms of Financial Aid only pay for courses in your major or academic plan.

Pre-Health Office Advising Services

Q: What is the role of the Pre-Health Advising Office?

A: The Pre-Health Advising Office provides guidance and support to students who intend to pursue a health-related profession, such as: medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, optometry, podiatry, pharmacy, physician assistant, and physical therapy. The Pre-Health Office does not assist pre-nursing students.

Q: With what does the Pre-Health Advising Office assist?

A: The Pre-Health Advising Office offers advice regarding the classes required for their respective health profession, graduate school standardized admissions tests, letter of recommendation acquisitions, personal statement review, extracurricular activities, and various application services.

The Pre-Health Advising Office does not keep academic records, enroll students in courses, manage credit transfers from previous institutions, or keep a list of courses that are transferable to Hunter's curriculum. For these questions and others related to your academic record, please refer to either the Admissions office (212-396-6047), or the Registrar's office (212-772-4474).

Q: When should I meet with Pre-Health Advisors?

A: Students should meet with a Pre-Health Advisor at least once per semester to review course selections and maintain active standing with the Pre-Health Office.

Getting Started on the Pre-Health Track

Q: How do I get started on the Pre-Health track at Hunter College?

A: Students who are new to Pre-Health are encouraged to join our email listserv so you can receive daily information about workshops, events, resources, and opportunities. Students must register with their Hunter College email address in order to receive announcements. After subscribing, please review our steps on how to join the Pre-Health Program.

Q: Do I need to open a Pre-Health file if I am interested in Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Pharmacy, or Physician Assistant Programs?

A: Students interested in pursuing Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Pharmacy, or Physician Assistant Programs do not need to open a pre-health file in order to have letters of recommendation uploaded to their application. These students also do not need a Pre-Health file in order to receive advice or guidance on fulfilling course requirements or have their applications reviewed.

Q: What Pre-Health events can I attend so that my Pre-Health file is kept active?

A: Any event hosted by the Pre-Health Advising Office or Pre-Health club/organization at Hunter College will fulfill this requirement. Events hosted by external institutions will not count towards this requirement.

Q: How do I receive attendance credit at a Pre-Health event?

A: All Pre-Health events are currently held on Zoom. To receive credit for having attended an event, the Zoom display name must be the same name that the student used to register for the event. Additionally, students must join the Zoom event at the scheduled start time and stay for the full length of the event.

Please review our Event Registration, Attendance Policies, and Best Practices for more information, including how to cancel your RSVP.

Coursework & Extracurricular Activities

Q: What are the required courses for the health professions?

A: Different health professions require different prerequisites. Please review our course requirements to view the prerequisites specific to your career-track.

Q: Can I ePermit science courses to speed up my studies at Hunter?

A: While you may e-permit courses from other CUNY institutions, the Pre-Health Advising Office does not recommend students take more than one or two e-permit courses because these courses do not count toward your 38 science credits requirement, nor do they contribute to your Hunter science GPA calculation. Taking more than two e-permit courses will hinder your chances of qualifying for a Committee Letter, and/or qualifying for a Pre-Health file.

Q: Do ePermitted science courses count towards fulfilling my Pre-Health course requirements?

A: Only science courses taken at Hunter will count towards satisfying the required credits for opening a Pre-Health file and obtaining a Committee Letter.

Q: How many hours of volunteering should I complete?

A: Please note that the hours listed below are recommended minimums. We strongly suggest students select experiences they will enjoy rather than doing something to “check a box.” If a letter of recommendation is requested by a student for any of the below, the students' hours should be documented in the letter of recommendation.

Suggested Volunteering Hours
Type Min. Hours Examples
Clinical - Paid or Volunteer 200
  • Shadowing doctors/physicians
  • Working at a clinical office where there is patient interaction
  • Hospital, EMT, or medical scribe volunteering where there is patient interaction
Non-Medical Community Service (Must Be Volunteer/Unpaid) 150-200
  • Volunteering at your place of worship
  • Unpaid academic tutoring
  • Volunteering at a home for the elderly
  • Providing services to an underserved community
  • Organization Examples: Let's Get Ready: Students Helping Students to and through College, Project Happy-NYC Project, Give Kids a Smile and Peer Health Exchange.
Research for MD/DO 6 months or 1 summer Volunteer clinical or bench lab research opportunities at Hunter or through an outside academic or medical institution.
Research for MD-PhD 2 years, multiple labs preferred Volunteer clinical or bench lab research opportunities at Hunter or through an outside academic or medical institution. Minimum of 1 publication.

Q: Where can I find non-health-related community service opportunities?

A: Students can visit the following websites to research community service opportunities in New York City:

Applying to Pre-Health Professions Graduate Schools

Q: What GPA must I maintain to be considered a competitive candidate for health professional school?

A: A student with a GPA of 3.6 or higher is considered competitive for the health professions. A competitive GPA and strong performance on the applicable standardized exam—MCAT, DAT, VAT, PCAT, OAT, or GRE—are strong indicators of success, however, there are many individual factors at play in the admissions process. Please view our successful student profiles to read where Hunter students have been accepted.

Q: How do I request letters of recommendation from science faculty?

A: You must make the effort to get to know your instructors by going to office hours and/or staying after class to ask questions. It may seem intimidating to walk into office hours and start conversations, but the more you practice this, the easier it will be. Starting in your first semester, make it your goal to get to know one faculty member well; by the time you apply, you will have developed relationships with at least two professors.

You are also encouraged to participate in classroom discussions and recitations so that instructors can get to know you. Instructors should be informed early on of your interest in a career in the health professions. If possible, take multiple courses with the same professor so that you have a better opportunity to build a relationship with that professor.

Q: What are some medical and health professional schools to which Hunter students have been accepted?

A: Hunter students have been accepted to many schools. Below is an abbreviated list, to name a few:

  • Albert Einstein College of Medicine
  • Columbia Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons
  • Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Saini
  • New York Medical College
  • New York Medical College
  • New York University College of Dentistry
  • Stony Brook University School of Medicine
  • SUNY Downstate Medical College
  • University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine Yale School of Medicine

Q: Which medical schools accept applications from international applicants?

A: The schools listed below accept applications from international applicants:

Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University

Baylor College of Medicine

Boston University School of Medicine

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine

Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science

Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

Duke University School of Medicine

Emory University School of Medicine

Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

Georgetown University School of Medicine

Harvard Medical School

Howard University College of Medicine

Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California

Loma Linda University School of Medicine

Medical College of Wisconsin

Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine

Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

Saint Louis University School of Medicine

Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University

Stony Brook University School of Medicine

SUNY Upstate Medical University

The George Washington U. School of Medicine and Health Sciences

The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University

Tufts University School of Medicine

Tulane University School of Medicine

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine

University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

University of California, Davis School of Medicine

University of California, Los Angeles David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine

University of Chicago Division of the Biological Sciences,
The Pritzker School of Medicine

University of Connecticut School of Medicine

University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine

University of Kentucky College of Medicine

University of Louisville School of Medicine

University of Texas Medical School at Houston

University of Utah School of Medicine

University of Virginia School of Medicine

Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine

Weill Cornell Medical College

West Virginia University School of Medicine

Yale University School of Medicine

Q: Which medical schools use the MMI interview format?

A: The schools listed below use the MMI interview format:

MD Schools

Albany Medical College

California Northstate

Central Michigan University

Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University

Cooper Medical School of Rowan University (hybrid—traditional + MMI)

Duke University

Michigan State University College of Human Medicine

New York Medical College

New York University

Nova Southeastern (MD)

Oregon Health and Science University

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

San Juan Bautista (Puerto Rico)

Stanford University

SUNY Upstate

Tufts University (Maine Track only)

Universidad Central Del Caribe (Puerto Rico)

University of Alabama (hybrid)

University of Arizona

University of California—Davis

University of California—Los Angeles

University of California—Riverside

University of California—San Diego

University of Cincinnati

University of Colorado

University of Massachusetts

University of Michigan (hybrid)

University of Minnesota Twin Cities

University of Mississippi

University of Missouri-Kansas City

University of Nevada

University of South Carolina Greenville (hybrid)

University of Texas—Austin

University of Toledo

University of Utah (hybrid)

University of Vermont

Virginia Commonwealth

Virginia Tech Carilion

Wake Forest

Wayne State (hybrid)

Western Michigan University (hybrid)

DO Schools

AT Still University—School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona

Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine

Michigan State College of Osteopathic Medicine

Pacific Northwest College of Osteopathic Medicine

University of North Texas

University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine

Western University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine (hybrid)

Q: Which science and other pre-requisite courses can be taken during the summer term at Hunter College?

A: Pre-Health students can enroll in General Biology 1 (including lab)—BIOL 100, or any science lab course, including General Chemistry Lab 1—CHEM 106, and Organic Chemistry Labs 1 and 2 ORGO 223/ORGO 225 during the Hunter College summer term.

Students can also take Statistics—STAT 213, and Introduction to Psychology—PSYCH 100 during the Hunter College summer term. Our office strongly recommends that Pre-Health students take all other pre-requisite courses during the regular term at Hunter College.

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Pre-Professional Suite, Hunter East 710
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NY, NY 10065