Ohio Dominican University and Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine partnership assures students a path to medical school

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A select group of Ohio Dominican University (ODU) students will have a clear and direct path to the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (OU-HCOM) through a new “ODU-to-OU-HCOM Med School Early Acceptance Program.”

“We are proud and honored that the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine selected Ohio Dominican University as a partner for the ‘Med School Early Acceptance Program,’" said ODU President Peter Cimbolic, Ph.D., at a ceremony where the presidents signed the agreement between their universities, officially opening the program for enrollment. “This demonstrates their high regard for Ohio Dominican’s students and faculty, and the superior quality of the pre-med education that we deliver.”

Ohio Dominican is recruiting now for the first class that will begin in fall of 2014. The university will accept as many as 10 outstanding high school seniors from Ohio annually, and they will be assured of acceptance into OU-HCOM as long as they meet and maintain the rigorous academic standards set by both institutions. Students will have the opportunity to follow two paths to completion: They can attend ODU for three years and complete their senior requirements during their first year of medical school; or they can choose a four-year option at ODU prior to studying at OU-HCOM. Students then apply to attend OU-HCOM campuses in Athens, Dublin or Cleveland. More information on the program can be found at www.ohiodominican.edu/MSEA.

One challenge in addressing the state’s primary health care physician shortage is keeping graduates in Ohio. “Many Ohio Dominican alumni tend to stay in Ohio after graduation,” said President Cimbolic. “We are hopeful the graduates of this excellent program will remain in the state to become practitioners of primary care medicine, and we’re eager to begin recruiting the first class of students who will benefit from this exciting collaboration between two of Ohio’s foremost universities.”

“Since its founding in 1975, our medical school has dedicated itself to addressing some of the most pressing health care needs in the state by recruiting from Ohio and creating opportunities to practice in Ohio, especially as primary care physicians,” said Ohio University President Roderick J. McDavis, Ph.D.  “This new partnership with Ohio Dominican University is a great example of how higher education institutions can work together to achieve those aims. It also provides a wonderful opportunity for some of Ohio’s finest aspiring physicians.” 

“The Early Acceptance Program offers outstanding students an opportunity to earn their Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree in as few as seven years from one of the top programs in the nation,” said ODU Vice President for Academic Affairs Theresa Holleran, Ph.D. “The fact that students can begin their college education at Ohio Dominican University and make a seamless transition to OU-HCOM makes this one of the most appealing programs of its kind.”

OU-HCOM Executive Dean Kenneth Johnson, D.O., explained that with 50 percent of its alumni practicing primary care, OU-HCOM is positioned to address a national shortage of primary care physicians that is expected to exceed 45,000 within the next decade. Those living in rural or inner-city medically underserved areas will be hit the hardest. “With almost 60 percent of OU-HCOM graduates practicing in Ohio,” added Dr. Johnson, “programs like this that provide a shorter, intentional path to medical school will enable us to meaningfully address that shortage right here in our state.”

This joint program is available to select undergraduate students who:

  • Have achieved a high school GPA of 3.5 or higher, and have received a score of at least 28 on their ACT.
  • Have completed four years of English, Mathematics and Science courses, including Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

To remain in the program, students must meet certain criteria, which include maintaining a 3.7 overall cumulative GPA and a 3.6 cumulative GPA in all undergraduate science courses.

To qualify for the first class entering in the fall of 2014, high school seniors must be admitted to ODU no later than Nov. 15, 2013. Qualified applicants will be interviewed and accepted into the program by ODU and OU-HCOM administrators.

Ohio Dominican University is a four-year private liberal arts and master’s institution, founded in 1911 in the Catholic Dominican tradition. The University has approximately 2,700 students and offers undergraduate degrees in 43 majors as well as nine graduate degree programs. Ohio Dominican uses a student-centered approach, with a commitment to quality teaching and learning.

The Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine is a national leader in training primary care physicians. The college is number one in Ohio and 11th nationally in medical schools that graduate physicians who practice in underserved rural areas. The state’s only osteopathic medical school, the college opens a new site in Dublin, Ohio, in 2014, and in northeast Ohio in affiliation with Cleveland Clinic in 2015.