Preparing for a Career in Medicine

Tiger Tracks for careers in Medicine



  • You will need a tireless work ethic, sharp academic background, and strong interpersonal skills to provide treatment to patients.
  • Practicing medicine is as much a lifestyle as it is a career; practicing medicine calls for around the clock availability and a commitment to life-long learning.


  • Students interested in applying to medical school are required by the Association of American Medical Colleges to take one year of Biology, one year of Physics, and two years of Chemistry - including one year of Organic Chemistry. Each course must include a corresponding lab.
  • Completion of other higher-level classes in Biology or Chemistry, such as Biochemistry and Anatomy, is encouraged by certain medical schools. However, prerequisites for admission to medical school typically permit significant leeway for students to pursue other passions.
  • Students will find Classics 201, English Etymology, useful for understanding medical terms. Hampden-Sydney's Economics and Business department and Wilson Center for Leadership also endow aspiring doctors with financial acumen and leadership skills necessary to open and run an entrepreneurial medical practice.

Programs and Extracurricular Activities

  • The Pre-Health Society encourages students to begin developing knowledge of pertinent issues and ethical quandaries in the medical industry while also building a professional network through exposure to practitioners on trips and through speaking engagements.
  • The Hampden-Sydney Volunteer Fire Department, in coordination with Prince Edward County, offers an opportunity to receive training as an emergency medical technician and to practice as a first-response healthcare provider.
  • Southside Community Hospital in nearby Farmville regularly seeks volunteers from Hampden-Sydney College to assist with clerical responsibilities and to shadow physicians as they attend to their patients.
  • The Wellness Center hires student workers and provides them direct exposure to a family medicine while simultaneously engaging them in the confidential patient-doctor relationship.

Graduate Study

Hampden-Sydney College's Pre-Medicine students have a unique opportunity to apply to three non-binding early-acceptance medical programs: at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine (formerly known as "MCV," the Medical College of Virginia), at The George Washington School of Medicine, and at Eastern Virginia Medical School

After graduating from Hampden-Sydney students, attend a four-year medical school program. Medical students spend their first two years of medical school in basic sciences and the final two years in clinical rotations. By the end of their third year, medical students select a specialty and apply to residency programs. Typical residency programs and their duration include Internal Medicine (three years), Family Medicine (three years), Pediatrics (three years), Emergency Medicine (three years), Anæsthesiology (four years), Obstetrics and Gynecology (four years), Diagnostic Radiology (five years), and General Surgery (five years).

Students who are interested in Physical Therapy are eligible for four guaranteed positions into Lynchburg College's Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program. They must meet certain GPA and curricular requirements and work with the College's Health Sciences Committee just as if they were applying to med school.