Health Professions (Pre-Med)

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  • Academic Division The College
  • Offerings Coursework

Students working in a lab Students working in a lab

Combining a liberal arts education with a health professions track enables students to both prepare for careers in health, while still receiving a well-rounded, in-depth, and expansive education in several disciplines.

Health Professions

W&L supports the undergraduate education of students who wish to enter medical, dental and veterinary schools, as well as other health professions. W&L has an excellent record of placing these students into professional schools, in fact, over the past ten years, over 91% of students who applied to medical schools from W&L secured placement. In addition, education at a liberal arts university along pre-health preparation allows candidates a wide range of post-graduate options.

The Health Professions Advisory Committee provides advice to guide students to be prepared to take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT), Dental Admission Testing Program (DAT) and the GRE. Competition for acceptance to health professional graduate schools is fierce, so individualized planning, attention and preparation is at the core of this program. Planning can begin in a student's first year with the advice of a faculty member experienced in advising health career students. Follow up counseling includes appropriate choice of major, scheduling of courses required for admission and available summer opportunities.

The Liberal Arts at Work

A student in a lab

A student in a lab

Over 91%

of W&L pre-med students were admitted to medical school in the last 10 years

A Goal in Mind

“Coming into college I knew I wanted to be pre-med.... The neuroscience major allowed me the freedom to choose the area that most interested me and take courses that aligned with those interests.”

Laney Smith
Neuroscience Major


Ryan Doty '26 standing on an overlook just outside of Widemouth Bay, in Cornwall, England

Roots Pilgrimage

Ryan Doty’s summer passion project explored his family lineage through poetry and photography.

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Meet Tiwaniya Tyler ’24

With medical school on the horizon, Tyler embraces many opportunities such as research fellowship, studying abroad and sorority life.

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Washington and Lee's RAM volunteers at a clinic in West Virginia.

Student Organization Spotlight: Remote Area Medical

Washington and Lee’s chapter of Remote Area Medical takes students to remote rural areas to provide medical services and gain valuable practical experience along the way.

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Jaden Keuhner '24 at Lexington's Gold Star Memorial at Jordan's Point.

Jaden Keuhner ’24 leaves a legacy honoring Gold Star families

Keuhner helped establish a memorial at Jordan’s Point dedicated to veterans killed in the line of duty and their families.

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Meet Meg Graham ’23

Graham appreciates how W&L empowers students to follow their passions.

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Sadie Charles Calame

Building Her W&L Experience

Sadie Charles Calame ’23 has built a well-rounded college experience through campus and community involvement.

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Summer Opportunities: Internships Abroad

Despite challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, many students were able to travel this summer for valuable professional experience in other countries.

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Vemagiri in the lab

Pursuing Her Passions

Aishwarya Vemagiri '25 hopes her summer research experience on diet-induced obesity will lead to a career in the medical field.

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Kristina Ayers '25

Finding Her Calling

Kristina Ayers '25 is interning at a medical clinic for the homeless in Washington, D.C. through the Shepherd Higher Education Consortium on Poverty.

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Lucy Worthy '24 and Dr. Mark Hurdle '87

Becoming a Better Scientist

Lucy Worthy ’24 is conducting clinical research and shadowing a physician at the Mayo Clinic.

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Bridget Osas and Yewon Shin

Summer of Hands-On Research

Bridget Osas ’25 is researching behavioral impacts on the development of metabolic syndromes like obesity.

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Allie Stankewich '23 in Uganda

‘Chasing After Curiosity’

Allie Stankewich '23 spent summer 2021 learning about public health in Uganda and green roofs in New York City.

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Sample Courses

At W&L, we believe education and experience go hand-in-hand. You’ll be encouraged to dive in, explore and discover connections that will broaden your perspective.

BIOL 220


A study of the three main branches of modern genetics: Mendelian genetics, the study of the transmission of traits from one generation to the next; molecular genetics, a study of the chemical structure of genes and how they operate at the molecular level; and population genetics, the study of the variation of genes between and within populations.

CHEM 341


A study of the structure, function, biosynthesis and breakdown of biomolecules, including amino acids, carbohydrates, and lipids. Further study of enzymes, biological membranes and membrane transport, signal transduction, and regulation of metabolism.

PHIL 346

Medical Ethics

An examination of the issues arising out of the human impact of modern biomedical research and practice. Specific issues are selected from among the following: abortion, contraception, death and dying, experimentation/research, genetics, in vitro fertilization, intellectual and developmental disabilities, public health/community medicine, science/technology, transplantation and patients’ rights.

BIOL 201

Statistics for Biology and Medicine

This course examines the principles of statistics and experimental design for biological and medical research. The focus is on the practical and conceptual aspects of statistics, rather than mathematical derivations. Students completing this class will be able to read and understand research papers, to design realistic experiments, and to carry out their own statistical analyses using computer packages.

POV 101

Poverty and Human Capability

An exploration of the nature, scope, causes, effects and possible remedies for poverty as a social, moral, political and policy, economic, legal, psychological, religious, and biological problem. The course focuses on domestic poverty but also considers poverty as a global problem.