St. Olaf College

Pre-Health



The acceptance rate of St. Olaf’s competitive applicants (defined as cumulative GPA > 3.59) to medical school (MD degree) from 2011-2016 is 75%.  The acceptance rate of St. Olaf’s competitive applicants last year was 83%, with a 70% acceptance rate for all applicants. 


What sets St. Olaf apart?

St. Olaf College provides a unique combination of resources and services for pre-health students which effectively supports them in their journeys to a career in healthcare. St. Olaf is known for its strong science faculty and courses, including the cadaver lab and our robust nursing program. As well as being assigned a faculty advisor in their major, pre-health students also have access to faculty advising specialists in a broad range of healthcare fields. The Health Professions Committee, comprised of faculty from the natural sciences and mathematics, provides both informal advising and a formal service to students interested in medical, dental, and other health careers.

Throughout their time at St. Olaf, pre-health students benefit from collaborative advising by faculty and staff. The Pre-Health Career Coach in the Piper Center is a full-time staff member devoted to advising pre-health students and working closely with the Chair of the Health Professions Committee to provide workshops, information sessions, and personalized advising. Pre-health students have excellent experiential opportunities available to them that offer firsthand exposure to healthcare. Selective cohort internship programs (Rockswold Health Scholars, Health Scholars at the Mayo Clinic, Norway Innovation Scholars, Mayo Innovation Scholars) and structured shadowing opportunities (Allina, TRIA Orthopaedic, Center for Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation, Physician in Clinical and Hospital Health Care) are St. Olaf-specific programs for pre-health students. As a part of their liberal arts experience, pre-health students are encouraged to study abroad; health-related programs include the Peruvian Medical Experience and Biology in South India. One of St. Olaf’s greatest resources is our alumni, many of whom have entered healthcare fields. Through programs such as Ole Med and Connections (travel to major U.S. cities to experience industries and careers first hand), pre-health students are able to build relationships with alumni to learn more about their career paths, gather advice, and potentially to gain a mentor.