Mairead A. Carroll, Ph.D.
The Professional Science Master’s Program (or PSM) is a separate academic track (or “Plan”) within each of our six discipline-based basic medical science Master’s programs: biochemistry & molecular biology, cell biology, microbiology & immunology, pathology, pharmacology, and physiology.
In the PSM track, students are required to accumulate 36 academic credits to earn their MS degree. This total includes a minimum of 24 credits from a scientific curriculum of required and elective courses and 8 credits from a professional skills curriculum consisting of one required and several elective course options. In addition, students must complete an approved internship at a participating partner company or institution, culminating in a “capstone” report on the focal theme of that internship.
The aim of our Master’s programs is to prepare students for careers in one of our basic medical science disciplines either in academia or in the private or not-for-profit sectors. The PSM track has the same aim, but incorporates new strategies for preparing students for such careers by including: (1) course work related to business, management, communication skills, regulatory affairs and other topics important to career success but not specifically related to the scientific content of the chosen discipline, and (2) an internship experience that will provide practical, hands-on exposure to career opportunities in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology or health care industries or related placements in the private sector.
Applicants must have obtained a baccalaureate or higher degree, prior to the start of the program, from an accredited U.S. college or university or from a recognized foreign institution. In addition, applicants must submit scores from either the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test, or the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended, and two letters of recommendation from professors or other professionals who can attest to the applicant’s abilities, character, motivation, and potential for a career in the biomedical sciences. Although there are no specific admissions criteria with regard to minimum GPA or standardized test scores, it is recognized that acceptance into corporate internship programs is a highly competitive process. Therefore, the admissions committees will be seeking candidates with strong academic records and other indicators of high potential for career success in the biomedical field.