More than 80 percent of Otterbein students who apply to medical school are accepted. Our pre-dental, pre-veterinary, and pre-optometry students are equally successful.

Pre-Professional Health Studies Program

Pre-professional health studies are careers in health care which require a science education such as:

  • Pre-Dental
  • Pre-Medical
  • Pre-Nurse Practitioner
  • Pre-Occupational Therapy
  • Pre-Optometry
  • Pre-Osteopathic Medicine
  • Pre-Pharmacy
  • Pre-Physical Therapy
  • Pre-Physician’s Assistant

As a pre-dental, pre-medical, pre-veterinary medicine or pre-optometry student at Otterbein, you will choose a major in ChemistryBiochemistry & Molecular Biology, Biology & Earth ScienceEquine Science, or a similar discipline. However, any major field qualifies you for these postgraduate programs as long as you take at least one year of life science, two years of chemistry and one year of physics.

Why study Pre-Professional Health Studies at Otterbein?

  • A liberal arts science degree is an excellent preparation for many careers, including but not limiting you to those in healthcare.
  • Expert faculty, including several MDs who teach full-time or part-time in the Department of Biology & Earth Science, two MDs who act as Pre-Health Professional Advisors for all majors, and two DVMs in the Department of Equine Science.
  • Small classes that allow your professors to know you and your career-goals well, and to write strong letters of support of your application.
  • Opportunities for faculty/student science research projects beginning in your freshman year.
  • Structured internships that allow you to immerse yourself in your chosen field.
  • Otterbein’s Ohio Gamma chapter of Alpha Epsilon Delta, the national pre-health honorary society, allows students to demonstrate leadership and humanitarian qualities, as well as to support each other through the application process.

What should be my major in connection to Pre-Professional Health Studies?

  • Otterbein, like most colleges and universities, does not have a specific “pre-health profession” or “pre-med” major that is a training for a health career, but offers degrees that form a good educational foundation for graduate studies of many areas, and for the national entrance exams for many health schools.
  • Nationally, most students preparing for medical school, dental school, veterinary school, pharmacy school and optometry school major in BiologyBiochemistry/Molecular Biology, or Chemistry. The advantage of these majors is that the coursework required is a preparation for the national entrance exams MCATDAT,VMCASPCATOAT  . These science majors also enable you to fulfill the admissions requirements listed by health professional school more easily.
  • Students wishing to go to physical therapy school or physician’s assistant school may wish to major in Allied Health, housed in the Department of Health & Sport Sciences.
  • Students wishing to become nurse practitioners can apply to graduate school on the basis of a science degree, or a degree in Nursing BUT the best major for you is the one that attracts you most strongly. You should have enthusiasm and true intellectual interest in your major. Your undergraduate education is a chance to look around and develop your talents and interests, and then see where that leads you for an appropriate and rewarding career, whether in health care or not.
  • Students who wish to become veterinarians may wish to major in Equine Pre-Veterinary/Pre-Graduate Studies. Pre-vet students may also want to consider the Biology Department’s Zoo and Conservation Sciences program.

What kinds of facilities does the Pre-Professional Health Studies program have?

  • Most science classes are taught in our new state-of-the-art Science Center opened in October 2009. It houses over 96,000 square feet of discipline-specific laboratories, research space, classrooms, and a greenhouse.
  • Pre-veterinary science students will be impressed with Otterbein’s Austin E. Knowlton Center for Equine Science, which opened in Fall 2009. Among only a few academic equine centers nationally to be housed within an urban environment, the facility provides an important academic, economic, and recreational resource to the community, the region, the equine industry, and our outstanding students just 2 miles from campus. Learn more about the Knowlton Center for Equine Science here.