Student Information

Whether you are a current, transfer, or international student, it is critical to know your timeline. This will provide a step-by-step roadmap so you can work towards being a successful applicant to any health professional school.

Current Students

As a current pre-health student at UC San Diego, the road to any health professional school can be a daunting task. Below are some key resources, advising information, and all you need to know about any health profession. Here are some helpful tips to get you started:

Year What to Do
  • Focus on grades and pre-requisite course work
  • Start researching healthcare and volunteer opportunities 
  • Get to know your professors (i.e. office hours, coffee with a prof)
  • Go to drop-in advising and workshops
  • Continue taking pre-requisites
  • Continue getting to know your professors (find a mentor!)
  • Get involved! Healthcare, service, leadership experience
  • Attend pre-health related workshops
  • Consider research
  • Prepare for standardized test 
  • Continue building professional relationships
  • Continue getting healtcare, service, leadership, research experience
  • Schedule an appointment with an advisor
  • Learn more about the benefits of taking a GAP year
  • Application year! Identify mentors to write your letters of evaluation
  • Take standardized test
  • Work on personal essay 
  • Meet with advisor to evaluate the strength of your application
  • Meet with an advisor at least once/year to make sure you are on track
  • Use your summers to accrue healthcare, service, research, or leadership hours
  • Start building professional relationships early! Finding mentors takes time, but you will need them to write you a strong Letter of Evaluation


Group Advising: Weeks 0-1
Drop-in Calendar (changes weekly): Weeks 2-10
Appointments via Port Triton (juniors & seniors only): Week 3-10

Health Professions

Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Physical/Occupational Therapy, Physician Assistant, Podiatry, Public Health, Veterinary Medicine

Events & Programming

Stay in the know with anything and everything that is pre-health related on campus! Our up-to-date calendar will give you information on workshops, events, socials, student org meetings, panels, and much much more!

If you are a student org, department, or off-campus partner and would like to publicize your event on our calendar and newsletter, please fill out this form two weeks prior to your event:


Check out our additional resources and tools that will help support you during your pre-health journey.

For more tips on navigating this site, visit Start Here.


Transfer Students

As a transfer student, you have to hit the ground running! Here are some recommended steps to help you transition smoothly:

  1. Develop a timeline - this is essential. When you want to start your health professional school determines when you should apply.
  2. Complete the pre-requisites - finish the pre-reqs for your health professional school of choice. This will prepare you for the standardized test requirement.
  3. Prepare, study, and take the required standardized test - select a date to take this test (after you've taken the pre-reqs). Make sure to register early! Decide how you want to study (i.e. self-study, Kaplan/Princeton Review prep, etc.)
  4. Get to know your professors! - you have two years to develop meaningful relationships with your professors. Start early! Check out our suggestions here.
  5. Get involved and do something! Healthcare, service, leadership, research, student orgs - take advantage of your summers to accrue hours.
  6. Meet with a Health Beat advisor - visit our drop-in hours or schedule an appointment with an advisor. An advisor can help plan out your timeline and develop a strategic plan to becoming a competitive applicant. 
  7. Join the Transfer Students for Health student organization - learn from your peers who are going through the same experience as you! This will offer a community of support as well as insight on how to best navigate your pre-health journey at UC San Diego.

There is a lot to do once you arrive! The above should help get you started. Make sure to see an advisor during your first quarter. This will be critical for developing a successful timeline.

Check out our Health Beat Events Calendar for all pre-health related events and programming happening around campus.

Pre-Health Transfer Mini-Series Workshops

Pre-Health Transfer Series Part I: Making a Smooth Transition

Pre-Health Transfer Series Part II: Keeping up the Momentum

Pre-Health Transfer Series Part III: Putting it All Together

International Students

It can be challenging for international students to apply to a health professional school in the U.S. According to the AAMC, in 2014, 1,901 students applied to medical school, 409 were accepted, and 300 matriculated. That's around 20%. 

In any given year there are approximately 50,000 medical school applicants a year and ~40% get accepted (Note: this is just for medical school and other health professional schools may have different statistics).

Factors to consider when applying to a health professional school as an international student:

  • Which schools accept international students? And how many do they actually take? Every health profession has an official guide to their respective health professional school. Most professions have online guides, however some still have hard copy guides. 
  • Can I afford going to this health professional school? As an international applicant, many schools will expect to see evidence that you can afford to pay for at least one year's worth of tuition and living expenses. This varies from school to school.
  • Private schools are more likely to accept international applicants although they are typically more expensive

Schools who ACCEPT and DO NOT ACCEPT International Applicants

Check out our Health Beat Events Calendar for all pre-health related events and programming happening around campus.

International Students & Programs Office

Employment & Career Resources for International Students