UVI offers public look at early medical programs


 ST. CROIX – Dr. Samantha Kaplan, director of the Early Medical School Selection Program at Boston University, held a public seminar  for students interested in medical school at the University of the Virgin Islands’ St Thomas and St. Croix campuses on Jan. 25.

Kaplan is a medical doctor and a board certified obstetrician-gynecologist and assistant professor at Boston University School of Medicine. The conference took place on the St. Thomas campus and was available through videoconference on the St. Croix campus.

Dr. Samantha Kaplan, MD. MPH
Dr. Samantha Kaplan, MD. MPH

According to Kaplan, UVI has been in partnership with the program for 13 years, and is one of 14 historically black institutions that participates in the program.

“The program is designed to increase the underrepresented minority rate of students interested in becoming physicians and to help them with their academic career,” Kaplan said.

Students are provisionally accepted into medical school after the completion of two years of undergraduate study.

Kaplan said students who are accepted into program complete their junior year at their university and transition to Boston University at their senior year. Students accepted into the program are required to take part in two separate six -week summer programs at BU, one during their sophomore year and one during their junior year. Kaplan explained the students are placed with physician mentors, aiming to provide early hands on experience in medicine and learn the life of a physician.

Additionally, “Students will learn medical terminology, biochemistry and the MCAT (Medical College Admission Test),” Kaplan said.

Presently, five UVI students who are biology majors are enrolled in the program. Monique Meade and Chinamaere Igwebuike are seniors at BU and studied at UVI during their junior year. Marisela Narcisse, Denese Dorival and Nerissa Washington are currently juniors at UVI and will be at BU next year.

Applicants must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 in sciences courses and a 3.0 in non-science with no grade lower than a C in any courses.

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