Pre-Health STudents & COVID-19 

Helpful Information for Pre-Health Students In the wake of COVID-19

As Florida Southern College continues to update our policies and guidance regarding COVID-19, the Health Professions & STEM Career Development Center is actively developing ways to support our pre-health students.

Information Updated on 08/14/2020

 


Pre-Health Advising:

In order to protect faculty, staff, and student safety, the Health Professions & STEM Career Development Center staff will only be holding virtual appointments and events for fall 2020. We are confident that we will be able to still provide high-quality, individualized pre-health advising through a virtual setting. As a matter of fact, the Health Professions &  STEM Career Development Center actually held 1.5x more appointments in summer 2020 (when working as an entirely virtual office) than summer 2019.

We strongly encourage pre-health students to continue to connect with us through email, virtual appointments scheduled on Handshake, drop-in appointments, and social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram).  All normal appointment options are still available. To meet with Lauren Albaum, Director of Career Development, please select the Health Professions & STEM Career Development Center when scheduling an appointment. Full instructions on how to schedule an appointment can be found here: How To Request an Appointment on Handshake.

Pre-Health Appointments

Additionally, the following options have been added to ensure students are able to connect with our office:

 

Pre-Health Shadowing, Volunteering, & Extracurricular Activities:

For your health and safety and that of the larger community, we recommend that all students (with the exception of those individuals with relevant certifications and those who have received specific approvals) cease any in-person shadowing or volunteering activities within healthcare facilities. This is a time of uncertainty and disruption for everyone, and professional schools are well aware of the implications the current pandemic will have on pre-health students. They will not hold this time against you as it is outside of your control. Try not to stress about the “lost time” shadowing/volunteering in physical capacities and focus on the ways you can be an active, helpful member of your home community. A list of ways that pre-health students can make the most of their time during COVID-19 can be found here.

Ideas for Pre-Health Students During COVID-19

 

Professional School Examinations:

Please check the following websites for more information about exam reschedulings, additional openings, policy changes, and more:

 

ONline prerequisites for professional school: 

Traditionally, professional schools (medical schools, dental schools, veterinary medical schools, etc.) do not prefer and many do not allow online prerequisites, especially science courses. However, the current shift to virtual classrooms was not a choice that you (or students at most other institutions) have actively made! Everyone is trying to be flexible right now, health profession programs included. As of 03/24/2020, many professional schools have announced flexibility to their admissions policies regarding coursework taken in spring 2020 (and likely into summer 2020 and fall 2020). At this time, proceed with your spring 2020, summer 2020, and even fall 2020 prerequisites as planned with the courses available to you (regardless of course modality). If you need specific advice regarding your pre-health prerequisites, please do not hesitate to make an appointment with Dr. Lauren Albaum on Handshake.

 

COVID-19 Impacts on Professional School APplications 

Health Profession Association CAS COVID-19 Website(s)
Allopathic Medicine AAMC AMCAS View allopathic medicine 1 and View allopathic medicine 2
Communication Sciences & Disorder CAPCSD CSDCAS View Communication Sciences & Disorder
Dentistry ADEA ADEA AADSAS View Dentistry
Naturopathic Medicine AANMC NDCAS View Naturopathic Medicine
Occupational Therapy AOTA OTCAS View Occupational Therapy
Optometry ASCO OptomCAS View Optometry
Osteopathic Medicine AACOM AACOMAS View Osteopathic Medicine
Pharmacy AACP PharmCAS View
Physical Therapy APTA PTCAS View Pharmacy
Physician Assistant PAEA CASPA View Physician Assistant
Veterinary AAVMC VMCAS View Veterinary 1 or View Veterinary 2

 

 
The information below only applies to Spring 2020

Academic Policy Changes for Spring 2020 

First, please ensure you have fully read these new Academic Policy Changes for Spring 2020.  It is important that pre-health students consider how their choices may impact degree progression and degree completion, as well as the potential implications to their future professional school applications. Many professional schools continue to review and update their policies towards prerequisite & non-prerequisite courses. Please review the association websites for up to date information for your respective programs.

In order to assist you, the Health Professions & STEM Career Development Center has outlined some general recommendations regarding selecting a “P”, “NC” or letter grade for professional school.  Please carefully review the information below and be sure to discuss all potential decisions with your Academic Advisor and a member of the HPAC before making a decision by the May 8th deadline.

Prerequisite & Non-Prerequisites Coursework IN SPRING 2020

Prerequisite coursework refers to those courses that are required for admission to individual professional schools. These courses vary from program to program but frequently include the following courses. Please research to confirm which specific classes are considered prerequisite courses for the programs where you intend to apply.

  • If you earn a letter grade of “A” in any course: it is recommended that you keep this letter grade and do not select the “P” option.
  • If you earn a letter grade of “B” or "C" in a prerequisite course: First determine the specific policies regarding P/NC grades for your program(s) of interest as they may vary. If a grade of P is accepted by your program for prerequisites coursework, you may wish to select the "P" grade option.  Some professional schools may require that you select the letter grade, if given the option. In this case, we recommend you adhere to their policy. As a reminder, a grade of "P" will have no impact on your GPA for professional school.
  • If you earn a letter grade of “B” or "C" in a non-prerequisite course: If a course is not considered a prerequisite for professional school, there may be additional flexibility in selecting a grade of “P”/ “NC” versus the traditional letter grade.  Pre-health students should strongly consider the impact to their overall and science GPA of selecting a grade of “P”/ “NC” or a letter grade for individual non-prerequisite coursework.
  • If you earn a letter grade of “D” or “F” in any course: It is generally recommended that you opt for the “NC” option. As professional schools will not accept a grade of “D” or “F”, earning one of these two grades would have a negative impact on a student’s GPA while still requiring a future retake of the course. In this situation, it is in a student’s best interest to take the alternative “NC” grade, which has no impact on GPA, and then retake the course in a subsequent semester, if needed.