VCU School of Dentistry offers outstanding programs to prepare students in the fields of dentistry and dental hygiene. From immersive tours and summer camps to in-depth shadowing opportunities and service-learning experiences, we offer a number of pathway and outreach programs for students interested in pursuing a career in oral health. Our pre-dental programs include programs from middle school through the post-baccalaureate level.

While each pre-dental program has its own benefits, all our programs aim to: 

  • Encourage students to explore career opportunities within dentistry.
  • Provide students with access to academic and social resources that enhance their qualifications for admission to dental school.
  • Connect students with a network of dental professionals who support our mission.

Pre-dental programs

Master of Science in Microbiology and Immunology with a concentration in oral biology 

This two-year degree is offered by the VCU School of Dentistry in association with the VCU School of Medicine. Students can explore a career in research while improving their academic standing. Research topics include cancer, infection and immunology, tissue engineering and clinical research opportunities. Students with an interest in dental school have the option of taking electives from the first year dental school curriculum.

For more information, please contact Dr. Oonagh Loughran, director of postgraduate research programs, at oloughran@vcu.edu.

Diversity P.A.T.H.S. programs

VCU's Diversity P.A.T.H.S. (Promoting Access To Health Sciences) features programs that are offered to students from elementary school all the way through the post-baccalaureate level. Each and every program in VCU P.A.T.H.S. offers unique and interesting experiences in dentistry as well as other health professions.

For more information please visit the VCU Division for Health Sciences Diversity.

InDent program

InDent is a one-week summer program designed to introduce college students to the dental profession. The program offers participants challenging and informative hands-on dental experiences at VCU School of Dentistry’s state-of-the-art facilities.   

For more information, please visit the InDent program.

Guaranteed admissions program

Each year the Guaranteed admissions program accepts up to five high school students. After completing their four-year undergraduate education at Virginia Commonwealth University, these students are guaranteed admission to the dental school. The preferred applicant track is an alternative for students already enrolled at VCU as an undergraduate. Students apply at the end of their sophomore year. If accepted and all requirements are met, those students are guaranteed admission into the School of Dentistry. Up to five VCU students are accepted into the program each year. For more information please visit the VCU Honors College.

Post-baccalaureate health sciences program

The post-baccalaureate undergraduate Certificate in Health Sciences is designed for students who hold a baccalaureate degree but do not have the prerequisites needed to enter doctoral-level programs in dentistry, medicine, osteopathic medicine, optometry, physical therapy, pharmacy or veterinary sciences. The certificate program helps students become more competitive for admission into graduate-level programs.

For more information, please visit VCU pre-professional health advising.

Premedical graduate certificate program

The Premedical Graduate Health Sciences Certificate Program (CERT) of VCU School of Medicine is a one-year, graduate-level program for individuals seeking to enhance their qualifications for admission into professional schools, including medical, dental and veterinary school. Students who successfully complete the certificate program also have an opportunity to continue to a Master of Science (M.S.) or Ph.D. degree program within the School of Medicine.

For more information please visit the VCU School of Medicine.