Health Advising

Nontraditional and International Student Information

Nontraditional Students

As a non-traditional adult student planning a career in a health profession, you have different needs. You are not alone in your goals. In the last two decades there has been a dramatic rise in medical school applicants who are more than 27 years old, from 10 percent to 17 percent of all applicants. Sometimes these applicants have one or more degrees and impressive work experience outside of medicine. Non-traditional students usually have completed their undergraduate education in a field that did not include the sciences and later return to complete the pre-medical requirements, and in some cases to broaden their educational background.

How an admission committee will assess your previous college work depends on many factors, like how long ago the courses were taken, what academic discipline was being studied and toward what goal. A medical school admissions committee will also be very interested in how you decided to enter medicine after initially choosing a different career goal in life. Also of concern may be family responsibilities and sources of emotional support. To balance those concerns, non-traditional students often display greater maturity because of their life and employment experiences, as well as greater motivation since this career decision may be based on a deeper understanding of the career and of themselves.

The first step to realizing your dreams as a health professional is to apply and enter Xavier University through our adult admission office, CAPS, the center for adult and part-time students. Once you have been accepted into Xavier, you will then receive an academic advisor in your major area of study to help you thorough your academic program. To assist you in all phases of your undergraduate experience, and to help you prepare for successful admission to the health professions school of your choice, Xavier also provides you with specific advising through the office of the coordinator of pre-professional health advising.You are encouraged to meet with the coordinator to discuss your general preparation for medical school, and specifically, the scheduling of courses in preparation for the MCAT.

Xavier University offers two options for recognizing your completion of pre-medical courses:

  1. A minor in biomedical sciences if you are completing an undergraduate major in a non-science discipline, or
  2. a post-baccalaureate pre-medical studies certificate if you are a non-degree seeking student.

Please feel free to browse and bookmark this section of Xavier's web site. It is designed to acquaint you with the special advising services available to all students at Xavier and the preparation typically required to fulfill your professional health career aspirations.

International Students

There are a is a very small number of international matriculants to U.S. medical schools. 

As explained in the Medical School Admission Requirements, published by the Association of American Medical Colleges, this very small number of international matriculants results from several factors:

  • Many public medical schools limit enrollment to state residents.
  • State residency statues require that applicants be either U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
  • Many private medical schools require international applicants to document their ability to independently finance a medical education.
  • Many countries impose severe restrictions on exportation of currency.
  • Federal financial aid sources generally require either U.S. citizenship or permanent residency.

International applicants who wish to come to the United States to eventually receive their medical education in an American medical school should be aware of these issues, and think very carefully before applying for admission to an undergraduate program in the United States.