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Drexel Pathway to Medical School Message from the Program Director

Leon McCrea, MD

I wanted to let you know about our Drexel Pathway to Medical School (DPMS) program. But first, a little about Drexel and the College of Medicine. Nearly 130 years ago, A.J. Drexel decided a practically focused, technology-promoting, innovative institution was needed, and he founded one: Drexel.

Almost half a century before that, two new medical schools opened their doors, and both enrolled those deemed "not suitable" to become physicians. Woman's Medical College was one of the first institutions where women could become doctors. Hahnemann Medical College admitted men who had no access to medical training elsewhere (e.g., Italian, African-American, Jewish). These two schools eventually became Drexel University College of Medicine. We are very proud of our heritage and legacy. Our traditions of excellence in clinical care, innovation in research, and cutting-edge medical education are the result of our dedication to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Excellence in medicine happens when all talented students have access, opportunity and a voice. That's what we are about here at Drexel.

As a talented student, you may have "all the right stuff," but have not yet been able to demonstrate that in your academic endeavors. Maybe it's your science GPA or MCAT performance, but whatever is holding you back, you need our program – and the field of medicine needs your gifts and skills.

The DPMS program offers a conditional acceptance to Drexel's MD program. It is a one-year academic record- and MCAT-enhancer program. Other post-bac programs may give you graduate science courses . Ours is different. You will take courses equivalent in pace and rigor to first-year medical school courses.

In the DPMS program, we intend to recruit the best and the brightest – those with the talent, dedication and drive to become outstanding physicians. We know our students succeed – we've researched it! Once in medical school, our DPMS students perform on par with their non-post-bac peers.

During your DPMS year, you will also have holistic experiences, such as professionalism and ethics courses, the opportunity to round with physicians of different specialties, being mentored by physicians and clinical scientists, and connecting to medical students. This fast-paced program includes robust support from tutors, academic coaches, small-group experiences and a diverse faculty and staff.

DPMS applicants are not limited by geography. The program is available to students who are from socially or economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Admission criteria include:

  • Undergraduate overall or science GPA of 2.9 or better. If you have taken the MCAT, we look for a score in the 25th percentile or greater in each section or overall.
  • Students who are from backgrounds that are historically underrepresented in medicine (e.g., racial and ethnic minorities), rural and nontraditional students are all encouraged to apply.

I'm delighted to have Dr. Rita Guevara, a DPMS alumna, as part of the DPMS team. Dr. Guevara is a pediatrician, faculty member and assistant dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. She manages our faculty mentorship program and works with us to provide positive DPMS experiences. In addition to Dr. Guevara, Thelicia (Lé) Hill serves as our program coordinator. Our Drexel medical student leaders serve as "bigs" (big sisters/big brothers). Each DPMS student has a "big" for one-on-one support and guidance. Our grads rave about that experience.

Members of the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Office (including Winnie Jones and Bernadette Campoli) all contribute to the village of people here to facilitate your success. I'm looking forward to working with you during the program – it means that I get additional time to know you and celebrate your career trajectory in the specialty of your choice. It is a privilege and honor to do that.

At Drexel, we are focused on excellence and proud to continue our historic legacy of inclusiveness in medical education.

Kindest regards,
Leon McCrea II, MD, MPH
Deborah J. Tuttle, MD, and John P. Piper, MD, Vice Dean for Educational Affairs; Director, Drexel Pathway to Medical School Program; Associate Professor of Family, Community and Preventive Medicine

Medical student reviewing x-ray images at a hospital.

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