The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey and Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine have announced a dual degree program that will provide students with the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree from Stockton and a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from RowanSOM at an accelerated pace.
The program consists of at least 96 semester credit hours (approximately three years) of undergraduate study at Stockton and four years of study of osteopathic medicine at RowanSOM, enabling students to graduate with two degrees in seven years, rather than eight. Osteopathic medicine emphasizes prevention and primary care, and takes a holistic approach to treatment.
“Careers in science and medicine are among the most in demand, while opportunities for doctors are expanding with each scientific advance,” said President Herman Saatkamp of Stockton. “This agreement helps increase the value of students’ educations while reducing the cost, and enables them to earn degrees from two prestigious institutions of higher learning in New Jersey.”
“Within the next decade, New Jersey will face a severe shortage of physicians, particularly those who practice primary care,” said Dr. Thomas A. Cavalieri, dean of RowanSOM. “This agreement to expand access and to make medical education more affordable, along with RowanSOM’s history of leading the state’s medical schools in training primary care physicians, will go a long way towards helping to avoid that shortage.”
The first students will be admitted to the program in Fall 2015.
Recruiting will primarily be done by Stockton. Qualified high school seniors and students enrolled as undergraduates at Stockton who have no more than 64 semester credits may apply.
Criteria for admission include appropriate high school preparation in English, Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics. Students’ grade point average (GPA) and class rank, along with letters of recommendation from teachers, will be of primary importance in evaluating applicants’ credentials, along with SAT or ACT scores.
Students will be required to maintain a minimum GPA of 3.5 (B+) and complete all pre-requisite courses and at least 75 percent of the credits needed to obtain a baccalaureate degree from Stockton before transferring to Rowan. Courses taken during the first year of medical study at RowanSOM will complete the requirements for a B.S. or B.A. from Stockton.
Before transferring to RowanSOM, applicants will be required to pass the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), with a minimum total score of 27.
Stockton graduates over 22 percent of the math and science majors in New Jersey public schools, more than any other state college. Many students admitted to the program will be enrolled in the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (NAMS), but students with high grade point averages who have taken the required undergraduate courses and scored well on the MCATS may also be admitted from other schools at Stockton.
Students would be encouraged to do research on biomedical issues during the summers, with some fellowships at either Stockton or RowanSOM being made available as funding permits.
Stockton and Rowan also offer a five-year dual degree program in engineering. Students typically attend Stockton’s School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (NAMS) for the first three years and then spend two years at Rowan’s College of Engineering, ultimately earning degrees from both institutions.