The Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine is a private graduate school of Case Western Reserve University. Founded in 1843 it has a long proud history of education and innovation including the graduation of the second woman in US history from medical school, six of the first seven female physicians in the country, and the third African American from medical school.
While providing traditional medical degrees, the school is also heavily involved in research, which first began on campus in 1887. Researchers here have contributed to many important medical developments since then, such as the modern technique for human blood transfusions. The school is also the largest Biomedical research institute in all of Ohio.
The academics here focus on the WR2 Curriculum, which involves formal medical training while incorporating the context of the patient’s social and behavioral conditions to provide a course of treatment.
Students at this school choose between one of three tracks:
The University Program
This is a traditional four-year program for those seeking to become physicians and scholars. During the first two years, students partake in the the Foundations of Medicine and Health course to gain a background in medicine. Year three is extremely challenging since it is packed with 48 weeks of clinical care rotations and a 16-week block plus electives of Research and Scholarship. Year four, which somewhat intersects with year three, involves students participating in the Advanced Clinical and Scientific Studies. During these four years, students will break into small groups of eight or nine with a faculty member to form IQ Teams. These teams will discuss cases and student work and meet every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
The College Program
The College Program is a five-year program for those interested in becoming physician-scientists. In conjunction with the Cleveland Clinic, students receive a great amount of training in becoming researchers. During the first year, students have 21 hours a week that are academically scheduled; the rest of the week is intended for independent study and research. Year two is similar but has an additional half day of work in the clinic attached. All students must complete a 12-month research project and a master’s level thesis, and will graduate with a M.D. with Special Qualifications in Biomedical Research.
Medical Scientist Training Program
This track offers a dual M.D and a Ph.D., and the school is only one out of 42 in the nation to offer dual degrees through the National Institutes of Health (NIH)—funded Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP). Students in this program complete the University program as noted above, plus earn a Ph.D. in the basic science field of their choice.
The school mainly admits recent graduates from a four-year college or university who have an interest in medicine. The admissions process in complex, so it’s recommended that students contact the school or download the admission guides that are available, which also provide specific timelines.
In general, students will need to fill out the electronic application from the American Medical College Application Service and once this is received and processed, they will be invited to apply via iApply. Students will also need to submit letters of recommendation and all transcripts from any colleges and universities attended.
The school provides several types of scholarships including need-based, merit, armed forces, and funds from the National Health Service Corps.
Students also have the option to take out federal loans, and completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is the first step in this process. The Office of Financial Aid can set up appointments to go over the process and help put together a financial aid package.
Students here are involved in intense medical training and clinical rotations, but there are still plenty of opportunities to relax and have fun. There are over 40 organization for students to participate in where students can gain leadership skills and make lifelong connections, and Cleveland is known for it’s sporting events and fun nightlife. Students can also partake in many volunteer opportunities in the Cleveland Free Clinic, where many students have been recognized with awards for their service.
Justine Ventimiglia graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Michigan – Dearborn. Currently residing in a 1950’s modest ranch in Metro Detroit, she enjoys researching and writing about Mid Century Modern furniture and decor as she works on restoring her home and documenting the process.