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Pre-Health

Interested in a health career? Carthage’s rigorous classes will equip you with a thorough knowledge of the basic sciences and the ability to think on your feet. Plus, you’ll have chances to tackle health issues head-on in communities near or far. We’ll help you find the right path for your skills and ambitions.

Carthage offers …

Acquire comprehensive training

Meet the needs of a changing profession. Rather than offer specific “tracks” or “programs” for students with health-related aspirations, Carthage provides a thorough and integrated curriculum that encourages students to explore their abilities and interests while pursuing their bachelor’s degrees. The health fields are changing rapidly, with new therapies and models of care always on the horizon. The best-prepared medical practitioners are adaptable and have a comprehensive education.

Pick the major that best prepares you. Students who will later pursue advanced degrees in the health-related fields can choose any major on campus, as long as they select courses to meet the prerequisite expectations of their intended graduate programs. Most students in these areas choose to major in biology, chemistry, neuroscience, or psychology, where they are broadly exposed to the basic sciences and gain hands-on experience in the laboratory. Some students considering careers in physical therapy, or health education choose majors in the Exercise and Sport Science Department.

Combine multiple skills. Carthage offers a focus in interdisciplinary fields that might benefit students as they enter the workforce. The innovative Entrepreneurial Studies minor provides preparation in business management and communication skills, giving students an opportunity to hone their abilities in corporate internships in the Chicago/Milwaukee area or nationwide. The Environmental Science major combines knowledge of geography, biology, chemistry, and physics with economics and political science to better understand matters of ecological and human health. Many of the most ambitious students participate in the Carthage Honors Program, which offers specially designed courses and encourages students to work on independent projects in conjunction with their chosen curricula.

Engage with global health

Gain hands-on experience in the community. Increasingly, tomorrow’s health care providers will need to work in multicultural environments and treat illnesses of both the advanced and developing worlds. Those committed to a life of service must reach out and help solve some of the most vexing health and hygiene problems. Carthage provides a rich framework for determined students to get involved in issues affecting their own community and societies worldwide. For instance, many students choose to gain experience working in local hospitals, veterinary clinics, nursing homes, and pharmacies, or pursue biomedical research projects on campus and at universities and medical schools around the country.

Make a difference abroad. Most Carthage students considering careers in the health fields participate in the campus medical mission to Nicaragua, through which students contribute to addressing public health in the clinical setting and developing clean water resources.

Capitalize on career development support

Receive guidance from advisors and clubs. Carthage students benefit from many forms of support during their years on campus. First, all students consult frequently with a pre-health coordinator who can answer questions about their educational goals and help them select the appropriate courses that match their abilities and interests. Second, Carthage has an excellent Career Services office that can help students arrange internships and promote their professional development. Finally, there is an active community of supportive student organizations that organize activities for students in the health-related fields, mentor them through exam preparation, and provide networking opportunities. Students are encouraged to participate in the Pre-Health Club, Pre-Physician Assistant Club, and Neuroscience, Biology, and Chemistry societies.

Gain real-world experience. Carthage students are strongly recommended to pursue volunteer and clinical shadowing opportunities, and to get involved in research projects early in their academic careers. The most successful candidates for graduate study in the health-related fields are those who dedicate themselves to this type of active engagement during their freshman years and maintain involvement through college.

Undergraduate Research

Collaborate with faculty on projects. Students in the health-related fields benefit from Carthage’s strong culture of undergraduate research. Science majors are expected to undertake experimental laboratory or field research and present their findings publicly. Current faculty-sponsored projects range from the study of microscopic virus particles and bacterial DNA sequences to wildlife ecology, human physiology and an ongoing research project studying post-traumatic stress disorder in human populations.

Enter graduate programs prepared. As health care is increasingly impacted by cutting-edge developments at the laboratory bench and research clinic, and as drug discovery and environmental health assessment requires advanced technical expertise, Carthage students enter graduate programs with experiences and skills that better prepare them for the needs of the workplace. 

Accelerated Options

Consider a three-year preparatory program. Students who are committed to pursue careers in pharmacy and occupational therapy might consider one of Carthage’s accelerated paths, allowing them to enter graduate school after three years. Such possibilities exist for occupational therapy studies at Washington University in St. Louis, and for pharmacy at the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science.

Impressive Outcomes

Hone your interests and choose the right path. Carthage faculty advisors and student organizations encourage students to explore their interests and find the career options that best suit them. It is common for students considering themselves “pre-med” as freshmen to discover new passions in the health-related fields over the course of four years. Through rigorous and broad-based coursework, engaging clinical experiences domestically and abroad, and advanced research, students considering health-related careers ultimately find the areas where they feel the strongest interest.

Earn prestigious graduate and medical school placements. Because Carthage students have opportunities to determine their true interests and experience first-hand the challenges and rewards of that field, they are able to  enter graduate programs where they will succeed. As a result, alumni report a high degree of satisfaction with their undergraduate majors and good prospects for rewarding careers.

After Carthage, students have pursued:

  • Medical training (M.D.) at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Chicago Medical School, and Loyola University, among others.
  • Medical training (D.O.) at Midwestern University, Des Moines University, and Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, among others.
  • Biomedical research (Ph.D.) at the University of Wisconsin, University of Texas, and Yale University, among others.
  • Physician Assistant training (PA) at Midwestern University and A. T. Still University, among others.
  • Pharmacy training (Pharm.D.) at the University of Wisconsin, Concordia University and University of Minnesota, among others.
  • Veterinary training (D.V.M.) at the University of Illinois, among others.
  • Dentistry training (D.D.S.) at the University of Illinois and Marquette University, among others.
  • Occupational therapy (M.S.O.T.) at Washington University and Rush University, among others.

 

 

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2017), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • Scheduled to open in fall 2018, a new residential tower will offer suite-style housing and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about The Tower

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wins, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • Beyond the campus boundaries, dinosaur fossils are prepared at the Carthage Institute of Paleontolgoy in Kenosha. A lengthy pterodactyl flight away, Finca Esperanza serves as a base camp for J-Term medical and water quality missions to Nicaragua. 

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • As a freshman in the highly selective Honors Program, learn how to gain expertise in anything from music to forest ecology. After that, tackle a contemporary social, economic, or political problem. If you like, you can live on an Honors-only floor of a Carthage residence hall. 

    • In 2016 and 2017, Carthage was named a top producer of Fulbright Scholars by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our athletic and recreation center, student union, computer labs, audiovisual production suite, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 10 years. Our new science center caps it off.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to athletic training, neuroscience to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of our students receive financial aid, a hefty chunk of which is scholarships and grants — including $1.25 million annually from the Presidential Scholarship Competition and numerous Merit Scholarships. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” says biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 30 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Chemistry Club, to Frisbee and Latin Belly Dancing. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • Imagine presenting your original research at an international conference — as an undergraduate. Carthage is dedicated to undergraduate research. Learn more about current opportunities.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 11 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …

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