Centre prepares pre-med students to excel in medical careers
October 7, 2010 By Chelsea Apple
Society help students attain the knowledge they need to excel in
medical school and their future careers.
Professor of chemistry Dr. Joe Workman serves as Chief Health
Professions Advisor and Pre-Med Advisor.
Whether they plan for careers as veterinarians, dermatologists,
neurosurgeons, medical researchers or any number of other
health professions, students benefit greatly from the pre-med
offerings at Centre.
Pursuing a career in the medical and health professions takes years of hard work and dedication, but thanks to Centre College’s Health Professions Advisory Group and Pre-Health Society, Centre students can get a successful early start.
Each of the six professors in the Health Professions Advisory Group specializes in a different field of the health industry, guiding students through the necessary requirements to excel in their chosen career. The student-run Pre-Health Society provides an encouraging support system for students facing the challenges of entering the health profession.
“It’s helped so much,” says Jacob Edwards ’11, Pre-Health Society Senior Representative. “This organization provides great constructive criticism. It brings out your core experiences, lets you know who you are and why you want to be there.”
Edwards works with Pre-Health Society President Alex Fenwick ’11 to bring guest speakers from various medical fields to campus and to organize student-led discussions on health issues. Fenwick says that this year the society is widening its focus from typical pre-med venues to embrace all types of health professions, from pharmacy to dentistry and veterinary studies.
“One of our main goals is to show these students that you can get out there,” Fenwick explains. “We’re just here to motivate them.”
Having joined the society as a first-year student, Fenwick says that he is excited to use his leadership position as a means of giving something back to his peers. “I feel like I owe it to the underclassmen to impart some kind of wisdom or helpful tip that I wish I’d known.”
As pre-med students, both Fenwick and Edwards received plenty of helpful tips from the Health Professions Advisory Group, chaired by Chief Health Professions Advisor and Pre-Med Advisor Dr. Joe Workman, professor of chemistry at Centre. Workman and his fellow advisors maintain close relationships with the officials of different health schools and are familiar with the requirements necessary to advance in specific medical professions. By helping students schedule their classes to meet these requirements on time, the Advisory Group enables more and more pre-health students to engage in valuable Centre experiences such as studying abroad.
The group also organizes instructional sessions on how to fill out medical or health school applications, polish interview skills and study for the necessary tests.
“By being here, I definitely feel more prepared to enter into the medical field,” Edwards says of his experience with the Advisory Group. “I have more confidence in my abilities.”
Workman says that when he joined Centre’s faculty in 1993, he knew he wanted to contribute to helping students become physicians. After becoming the Pre-Med Advisor, he tried to perform the task independently, but later enlisted the help of additional Centre professors in order to cover the different sets of requirements for each specific health field.
“I want to recruit people who are going to specialize in helping students enter different medical professions,” Workman explains.
His efforts paid off, and students continue to benefit from the careful advice and support of the Advisory Board and Pre-Health Society.
“The group serves as a point of contact for students and prospective students,” says Workman. “This is simply a manifestation of the kind of personal education you can get at Centre.”
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