North Central College is now offering high school students an opportunity for a “reserved seat” in the nation’s largest medical college and only academic health center in the osteopathic profession.
In a new agreement between North Central College and the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM), based in Erie, Pa., qualified high school students interested in a becoming a medical doctor or pharmacist will have the opportunity to be admitted jointly into both institutions. Application in the LECOM’s Early Acceptance Program can occur as early as the student’s senior year in high school and up until the start of the third year at North Central College.
“The agreement provides a guaranteed pathway and reassurance to students and their families access to high-quality graduate and doctorate programs for a career in osteopathic medicine or pharmacy,” said Marguerite Degenhardt, North Central’s pre-professional health program coordinator.
Degenhardt said advantages also include low tuition compared with other medical and pharmacy schools, a choice of three sites and distance education for pharmacy study, significant savings by not applying to multiple schools, no additional interviews and more.
At North Central College, students will experience Chicagoland’s premier all-inclusive science facility—the Dr. Myron Wentz Science Center. At the heart of the College’s Brilliant Future Campaign, the 125,000-square-foot facility opened for classes March 27 and will be fully operational when fall classes begin in September. Students of all disciplines benefit from 18 teaching labs; 16 research labs; 15 classrooms/seminar rooms; a lecture hall; 19 student gathering spaces; 53 faculty offices; a greenhouse; and Ratio Hall, a space to accommodate academic functions such as the annual Rall Symposium for Undergraduate Research.
In preparation for entering pharmacy or medical school, North Central students who major in Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry, Neuroscience, and other areas can also supplement their education with courses in the College’s new Health Science program, featuring courses in Cultural Competency in the Health Sciences, Health Care Ethics, Health Care Systems and Policy and more.
“LECOM is looking for medical and pharmacy students who will excel in academics, clinical care, research, and community service. We feel that by creating this affiliation with North Central College we can bring an opportunity to attract some of the best and brightest students from the Naperville area to both institutions,” said John Wojtkielewicz, Institutional Director of Undergraduate Affiliations.
“By offering prospective students a reserved seat at one of the LECOM campuses as incoming North Central College freshman, we can provide them with a great opportunity for an excellent educational experience both at North Central and at LECOM,” said Wojtkielewicz. “Our graduates are committed to serving those in their community who are in need of professional health care. Many of our graduates will return to their hometowns to practice. This agreement with North Central College will help us attract the students we seek while benefiting not only our schools but the citizens of the Naperville and surrounding area community.”
LECOM is a private college with additional locations in Pennsylvania and Florida. The LECOM Erie Campus is the only medical school in the country with five student-centered learning pathways leading to a doctor of osteopathic medicine degree and more.
Photo: Pictured to the far right is Marguerite Degenhardt, North Central's pre-professional health program coordinator, alongside two students majoring in biology.