Founded in 1851, Georgetown University School of Medicine is the oldest Catholic and Jesuit-sponsored medical school in the United States. It is
named according to its location, the Georgetown section of Washington, D.C. The school is a component of
GU Hospital and a Concentrated
Care Center containing 12 modern surgical suites. The
curriculum of the School of Medicine was approved by
This school’s 4-year curriculum combines departmentally based basic science courses and laboratory work,
prescribed clinical clerkships,multidisciplinary courses
and conferences, and electives. Courses in the first
2 years focus on the development of fundamental
knowledge concerning the body’s normal and altered
structure and functions. Small-group teaching and problem-based presentations have replaced a portion of the
large class lectures.
In the third year, clinical clerkships stress the
skills required to acquire and interpret patient-based
data, while the fourth year further develops skills in
patient management, including rotations in ambulatory care settings. Twenty-four weeks of electives are
available during this final year, 4 of which may be
used for vacation.
Faculty-student review of the curriculum is an important continuing endeavor of the School of Medicine.
Minority admissions: Special admissions programs for
under represented minority students include a prematriculation year of study supplemented with academic
enrichment and advising. Other degree programs: A
research track for medical students and a combined
MD-PhD program are also available; the PhD may be
taken in a basic medical science department, the neurosciences, or in philosophy-bioethics. Work on an
MPH can begin in the summer before matriculation.
Required courses include the basic premedical sciences
as well as 1 year of English and 1 semester of mathematics. Courses considered useful preparation are
biochemistry and computer science. A solid background in the humanities is important for future
physicians. Some preference is given to District residents and Georgetown University undergraduates.
Transfer and advanced standing: Students from foreign or domestic medical schools may apply to transfer
to the second or third year. Transfers must take and pass
Step 1 of the USMLE and must have taken the MCAT.
At GU the grading system consists of Honors,
High Pass, Pass, and Fail. Students who receive an F
in any course will be considered to be in a position of
jeopardy, and their case will be referred to the Committee on Students for Review. A failure could lead to
dismissal, repeating a year, or doing additional work in
a specific course. Passing Step 1 of the USMLE is
required prior to entering the third year.
Teaching: Basic sciences are taught in the School of
Medicine Building, the Preclinical Science Building,
and the Basic Science Building. Clinical teaching
takes place at University Hospital, and a
complex in close proximity to institutions providing
access to approximately 7000 beds. Other: The District location provides students with opportunities
such as federal laboratories, libraries, and museums.
The National Library of Medicine and the laboratories of the Department of Agriculture and Bureau of
Standards are affiliated with the university. Library:
Dahlgren Memorial Library houses about 160,000
volumes and subscribes to 1650 periodicals. Also
available for students’ use are the Library of Congress, the National Library of Medicine, the National
Institutes of Health Library, Agriculture Department
Library, and the Public Library of District of Columbia.
Carrie Petersen earned her Bachelors of Science in Education and a Masters of School leadership at Northern Illinois University. Carrie likes to travel with her husband and two sons.