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Certificate in Health Professions Preparation

Are you interested in pursuing a career in osteopathic medicine, but need some additional experiences in order to excel in the demanding medical school curriculum? A postbaccalaureate option may be just what you need to prepare yourself.

Designed by faculty members in the Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine (KPCOM), NSU’s innovative Graduate Certificate in Health Professions Preparation (CHPP) is unique in that it offers direct entry into the D.O. program upon completion of the two-semester program with a 3.6 GPA. Students who graduate with a 3.3 GPA or higher are also guaranteed an interview. The KPCOM does not guarantee interviews or admissions for graduates from any other program, so this is a unique opportunity to develop the skills necessary to become a competent and compassionate future Shark physician.

About the Program

The Graduate Certificate in Health Professions Preparation is designed to enhance the academic qualifications of students in preparation for direct matriculation into NSU’s Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine or other health professional programs. If you are passionate about pursuing a career as a physician, you will leave this program better prepared for the basic biomedical sciences you will encounter during your first two years at any medical school.

Why Choose Us

Our faculty members have found that students who have a strong background in the basic sciences perform better academically once enrolled in medical school, and in turn are better prepared for board exams. In order to best prepare the students enrolled in the program, we utilize the same faculty members who will teach them once enrolled in medical school. The CHPP cohort is also intergrated with current medical students and the campus community in order to enhance the quality and diversity of the CHPP student experience.

Similar to students who are in NSU’s D.O. program, CHPP students will be introduced to a variety of teaching techniques and learning resources. We utilize a flipped classroom model for instruction and make use of other asynchronous content delivery mechanisms available, such as Canvas, Lecturio, and Complete Anatomy.

Very few programs around the nation are as confident in their students’ preparation that they guarantee admission into their medical school class without additional requirements. We believe the academic preparation of our students is so robust that if they finish the program with a 3.6 GPA, we  directly admit them into the following year’s D.O. class.

Program Highlights

  • Direct entry into the KPCOM’s D.O. program upon completion of the certificate with a cumulative 3.6 GPA*.
  • Opportunity for a guaranteed interview into the KPCOM’s D.O. program upon completion of the certificate with a GPA between 3.3 and 3.59*.
  • Students are integrated with first-year medical students at the Tampa Bay Regional Campus and can participate in the same activities (student government, clubs, wellness lunches, student affairs-sponsored activities, etc.) in order to help facilitate the transition into medical school.
  • Faculty advising on study techniques and methods, as well as career preparation for medical school and residency.
  • Courses taught exclusively by the KPCOM’s science faculty members.

*Students must also have a cumulative MCAT score of 500 by the time they complete the certificate and must be able to pass a background check to be eligible for acceptance into the KPCOM’s D.O. program.

The Graduate Certificate in Health Professions Preparation program evaluates the overall quality of its applicants, looking at academic achievement, personal motivation, knowledge of health care and osteopathic medicine, profession-related experiences, and recommendations.

Specific criteria for admission are as follows.

  • NSU CHPP (postbaccalaureate) application – Applicants must have applied to the current cycle of the D.O. program for fall 2020 start.) Additionally, applicants must have a completed American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine Application Service (AACOMAS) application on file.
  • Application fee: $50 (required)
  • Official transcripts of all coursework, even if in progress (even if the applicant has previously submitted a service application)
  • Official MCAT (medical) scores (cannot be older than three years)
    • Official MCAT acceptable if part of service application or AACOMAS. MCAT scores sent by applicant can be validated with verification code.
  • Three letters of recommendation (must be submitted according to AACOMAS procedures)
    • Two from science professors and one from a nonscience professor OR
    • One preprofessional committee letter OR
    • If applicant has been out of school for at least two years, please contact an admissions counselor.
  • Personal interview


  • B.A./B.S. degree from a regionally accredited university
  • Completion of a minimum of 8 semester hours with a grade of C (2.0 GPA) or higher in each of the following:
    • Biology with lab
    • General Chemistry with lab
    • Organic Chemistry with lab
    • General Physics with lab
  • Completion of a minimum of 6 semester hours in English with at least 3 semester hours in composition with a grade of C (2.0 GPA) or higher
  • Completion of a minimum of 3 semester hours with a grade of C (2.0 GPA) or higher in Biochemistry
  • A cumulative MCAT of 498 or higher
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale

The first step in the application process is to initiate an application to the CHPP program by first applying to NSU by completing the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine Application Service (AACOMAS) application.

Step 1:

The college participates in AACOMAS for the receipt and processing of applications. All students who are currently applying to NSU’s D.O. program must complete an AACOMAS application and thus have already started the application process for the CHPP program. AACOMAS takes no part in the selection of students.

To start the application process through AACOMAS, applicants should submit applications electronically through AACOMAS Online, an interactive, web-based application at For questions, applicants may call (301) 968-4190.

The following steps are necessary for the primary application process.

  1. The applicant must submit the following materials to AACOMAS by January 15.
    • completed AACOMAS application
    • official transcripts from the registrars of all colleges or universities attended, mailed directly to AACOMAS by the college or university
    • a letter of recommendation from the preprofessional committee, or, if such a committee does not exist, then three letters of evaluation—two from science professors and one from a nonscience professor
    • a letter of recommendation from a physician
    • MCAT scores (must be no more than three years old prior to the date the application is submitted)
  2. The applicant must submit the following to the college by March 1.
    • a secondary application, which will be sent to the applicant by the college upon receipt of the AACOMAS application
    • NSU CHPP (postbaccalaureate) application
    • a nonrefundable application fee of $50

After completing your primary application and receiving notification that it is verified, NSU will send you a secondary application to complete. Once submitted, please contact the Office of Admissions and notify the office of your intent to apply to the CHPP program. Students may apply to the CHPP program and the D.O. program concurrently.

Step 2:

A personal interview is a part of the admission process; however, being interviewed is not a guarantee of admission. Not all applicants will be granted an interview. Those selected for an interview will be notified of the date and time of such interview by the Office of Admissions.

Notice of acceptance will be on a rolling or periodic schedule; therefore, early completion of the application is in the best interest of the applicant because of the limited number of spaces available in each class.

After acceptance, final and official documents and requirements must be received by the Office of Admissions within 90 days following the start of the first term. If these final and official documents are not received, or other requirements are not met by that time, the student will not be able to continue his or her enrollment.

NSU is proud to offer the CHPP program with one of the most affordable tuition price points in the country. Tuition for the CHPP program during the 2020–2021 academic year is $19,000. A Health Professions Division general access fee of $145 is required each year. An NSU student services fee of $1,500 is also required annually. There is also a registration fee of $30 each semester. All tuition and fees are subject to change by the NSU Board of Trustees.

Required Courses—Class of 2021

This is a full-time graduate program of study with 18 total credits over 2 semesters.

Required Courses Semester 1 (9 credit hours):
Course No. Course Name Credits Hours
PBC 9101 Anatomy I 2 Credits
PBC 9201 Physiology I 2 Credits
PBC 9300 Genetics 2 Credits
PBC 9400 Biochemistry 2 Credits
PBC 9501 Strategies for Academic Success I 1 Credit
Required Courses Semester 2 (9 credit hours):
Course No. Course Name Credits Hours
PBC 9102 Anatomy II 2 Credits
PBC 9202 Physiology II 2 Credits
PBC 9600 Microbiology 2 Credits
PBC 9700 Immunology 2 Credits
PBC 9502 Strategies for Academic Success II 1 Credit

Please plan on attending one of our virtual open houses. The director of the CHPP program and our inaugural class of students will give a presentation on the program and will be available to answer all of your questions.


Contact Us

Other questions related to the application process can be answered by one of our admissions counselors.

‘Jouseph’ Fauzhy Sliba, Admissions Counselor:

Melissa Chamberlain, Assistant Director of Admissions:

Dr. Christina Brown-Wujick, Assistant Professor & Director of the CHPP Program:

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