Incoming students in the MD/PhD Medical Scientist Training Program at Penn State College of Medicine participate in orientation activities in July 2016. Three students are pictured sitting at a table in a conference room, talking to each other while completing paperwork.

MD/PhD Medical Scientist Training Program

Training Tomorrow's Physician-Scientists

Through the MD/PhD Medical Scientist Training Program at Penn State College of Medicine, you’ll gain the tools and training you need to become a successful physician-scientist.

You’ll experience the breadth of clinical science while designing experiments and conducting biomedical research with modern technology.

The program, typically completed in eight years, will prepare you for a successful career in medical research, academic medicine, or a related field.

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About the Program

Curriculum

The MD/PhD program integrates medical and graduate education, providing flexibility for students to design a tailor-made educational experience.

Students take several graduate courses during the first two years of medical school, and participate in ongoing patient experiences through the Clinical Exposure Program in the research portion of their training.

Throughout the program, students are exposed to topics in clinical, basic and translational research. Learn more about the MD/PhD curriculum.

Graduate Programs

We offer graduate studies in several programs:

Why Choose Penn State?

Supported by the NIH

The Penn State College of Medicine Medical Scientist Training Program is supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, awarded to the top MD/PhD programs in the country.

The award supports the MD/PhD program to train medical scientists interested in pursuing careers in biomedical research and academic medicine. The College of Medicine also provides support to ensure ongoing and future success of the program.

Leading the Way in Personalized Medicine

Penn State College of Medicine is home to one of the first personalized medicine centers in the country.

As an MD/PhD student, you’ll have the opportunity to conduct research through the Institute of Personalized Medicine, which provides scientists with the resources they need to develop treatments tailored to the individual. 

Nicholas Sterling, a student in the MD/PhD Medical Scientist Training Program at Penn State College of Medicine, works with faculty member Xuemei Huang to investigate pictures of brain scans on a computer. Huang is pointing toward the screen as Sterling looks on.
A key feature of the Penn State College of Medicine MD/PhD Medical Scientist Training Program is the close collaboration between students and faculty.

Translating Research Findings into New Health Benefits

The Penn State Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) is an independent, multidisciplinary academic engine for clinical and translational science.

The ultimate goal of CTSI is to develop, implement and make available new ways to predict, prevent, and treat human disease.

Applying to the MD/PhD Program

In addition to the standard requirements for admission to the MD Program, we consider applicants who have:

  • Outstanding grades and MCAT scores
  • Sustained interest and experience in research
  • Strong letters of support

We take a holistic approach in reviewing applications, considering all aspects of a prospective student’s background.

International Students

International students are welcome to apply to the MD/PhD Program. Applicants must have completed all academic requirements for admissions in an accredited United States or Canadian college or university. Additionally, they must:

  • Follow the same application procedures
  • Adhere to the same timeline as domestic applicants

Apply Now

Important Dates
  • AMCAS application deadline is November 15
  • Secondary applications must be completed by January 15
Learn how to apply to the MD/PhD program

What's New in the MD/PhD Program

Student Resources

Penn State College of Medicine strives to create the best culture of respect and inclusion for our students. A number of programs, services and facilities are available.

See more resources for current students

Students sit in the recently remodeled Harrell Health Sciences Library at Penn State College of Medicine in July 2016.
Students sit in the recently remodeled Harrell Health Sciences Library at Penn State College of Medicine in July 2016.

Campus Life

Student Housing

Housing is available to Penn State College of Medicine students, residents and postdocs in University Manor East and West apartment complexes. One of the complexes is pictured as seen from a higher floor of a nearby building, with a road and trees framing it in the background.
Housing in University Manor apartments is available to Penn State College of Medicine students.

Penn State College of Medicine offers housing in its University Manor East or University Manor West apartments to full-time students, residents, postdocs and visiting scholars.

Read more about on-campus housing.

Life in Hershey, PA

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Hershey, PA, is known as "The Sweetest Place on Earth."

Penn State College of Medicine is in Hershey, PA, a town known as the home of the HersheyPark amusement park and the Hershey Chocolate Factory.

Read more about life in Hershey.