The first five North­eastern stu­dents have been accepted into an early deci­sion med­ical school pro­gram through a part­ner­ship with Tufts University.

North­eastern is one of four schools part­nering with the Tufts Uni­ver­sity School of Med­i­cine and its Early Assur­ance Pro­gram, which offers under­grad­u­ates at select insti­tu­tions the unusual chance to bypass the time-​​consuming and costly med­ical school appli­ca­tion process and the four-​​to-​​six month prepa­ra­tion for the Med­ical Col­lege Admis­sion Test.

Lib­er­ated from med­ical school’s labor-​​intensive processes, stu­dents more freely engage with Northeastern’s vast array of expe­ri­en­tial and aca­d­emic opportunities.

Instead of spending the summer studying for the MCAT’s, behav­ioral neu­ro­science major Chelsey Mitchell, who hopes to study psy­chi­atry and ado­les­cent drug reha­bil­i­ta­tion, will travel to Italy to study pho­tog­raphy. Biology major John Daggett will serve as a teaching assis­tant and travel across the East Coast playing the bag­pipes at var­ious high­land fes­ti­vals and solo competitions.

People forget that med­i­cine is an art as well as a sci­ence,” says Gail Begley, chief pre­med­ical advisor and asso­ciate aca­d­emic spe­cialist in the Biology Depart­ment at North­eastern. “In addi­tion to under­standing anatomy and phys­i­ology, stu­dents must learn how to interact with and under­stand people so that they can gain a cul­tural aware­ness and more effec­tively do their job.”

Stu­dents eli­gible to apply to the pro­gram include aca­d­e­m­i­cally qual­i­fied sopho­mores par­tic­i­pating in Northeastern’s four-​​year bach­elor pro­gram and mid­dlers par­tic­i­pating in its five-​​year pro­gram, as well as sopho­mores at Tufts, Bran­deis Uni­ver­sity, Boston Col­lege and Holy Cross. Students—such as Daggett and Mitchell—who applied and were accepted in 2008 will matric­u­late into the pro­gram in 2010.

Appli­cants must have a cumu­la­tive GPA of 3.5 or higher in all course­work and com­plete two semes­ters of biology and gen­eral chem­istry, and at least one semester of organic chem­istry with a com­bined GPA of at least 3.5 by the end of the aca­d­emic year in which they apply. Stu­dents must finish the rest of their med­ical school require­ments one year before entry into the pro­gram and main­tain a sim­ilar record of aca­d­emic per­for­mance in the two years prior to enrollment.

The wide range of pro­gram offer­ings com­pelled Daggett to apply. “As I began to inves­ti­gate Tufts, I found many unique char­ac­ter­is­tics, including the early incor­po­ra­tion of clin­ical rota­tions, a ded­i­ca­tion to active and highly involved learning and a strong com­mit­ment to the com­mu­nity,” says Daggett. “To be offered to par­tic­i­pate in such a pro­gram at a highly respected insti­tu­tion, I am extremely hum­bled and hon­ored.”
Other stu­dents accepted into the class of 2010 include biology major Jef­frey Cumplido, behav­ioral neu­ro­science major Marissa Pinksten and bio­chem­istry major Kale Whalen.

The appli­ca­tion dead­line to apply for entrance into the pro­gram in 2011 is Feb. 15. For more infor­ma­tion, please visit www​.premed​.neu​.edu