SUNY New Paltz has partnered with regional medical schools to provide the opportunity for a combined, seven-year, dual degree pathway to earn both a Bachelors degree (BA or BS) and a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO).
These programs are for incoming Freshman students only and require a special application process with an essay and an interview.
Currently, SUNY New Paltz has combined degree programs with the New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine (NYIT-COM) in Old Westbury, NY, and with TOURO College of Osteopathic Medicine in Middletown, NY. Both programs work the same way with respect to the admissions process, curriculum, and timeline.
Students accepted into the combined seven-year program typically major in one of the Natural Sciences and pursue a BS degree, but there is some flexibility and students may choose different fields of study in consultation with the program director.
Students in the program spend their first three years at SUNY New Paltz taking classes and participating in special curricular and extra-curricular activities such as the Pre-Osteopathic Seminar as well as clinical mentoring with local physicians affiliated with the Institute for Family Health.
One of the principal differences between this program and regular pre-medical studies is that the MCAT needs to be taken at the end of the second year, rather than during the third year. Students also need to maintain a prescribed GPA (currently 3.50 each and every semester) as well as attain a prescribed MCAT score which is determined by the medical schools prior to the student’s matriculation at New Paltz.
At the start of the third and final year at New Paltz, students begin a required stream-lined application process to medical school. As long as they have the prescribed GPA, MCAT score and receive a positive recommendation from the Program Director, they are granted an interview. Students must demonstrate their commitment and suitability for medical studies at the medical school interview. Upon satisfactory completion of this process, students matriculate as first year medical students at the beginning of what would have been their fourth and final year of college.
While many students in the combined degree program actually receive their Bachelor’s degree from New Paltz at the end of three years (primarily students who have significant AP and other prior college credits), the program is designed for students to move on to medical school without finishing their bachelor’s degree. The first year of medical studies is then back-transferred to New Paltz to complete the bachelor’s degree requirements and they are awarded their BA or BS at the end of their first year of medical school. They then continue their medical studies and are awarded the Doctor of Osteopathy upon completion of medical school at the end of seven years (3 years at New Paltz, 4 years in medical school).