Majors, minors & more
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- Specialization track
Veterinary medicine focuses on maintaining the health and welfare of animals and people. Veterinarians diagnose and control animal diseases, treat sick and injured animals, prevent the transmission of animal diseases to people, and advise owners on the proper care of animals.
Pre-veterinary study is not a major in itself. It is a preparatory track that can be incorporated into any major. As long as you complete the general core requirements for veterinary school, you can select any undergraduate major you wish.
Whatever major you choose, be sure to meet with the pre-vet specialist in the Health Professions Student Center when you enroll at WSU. Whether you're deciding on a major, working core requirements into your schedule, or putting together a strong veterinary school application, the specialists in the HPSC can help you plan for success.
What is the best major for pre-veterinary study? The quick and simple answer: Any major you enjoy.
The most important things you need to do as a pre-veterinary student are to fulfill the prerequisites for veterinary professional school and maintain a strong academic record. Admission to veterinary professional programs is highly competitive, so strong academic performance is an absolute must — and the more you enjoy your studies, the better your grades will be.
Also, it's a good idea to keep your options open. Choosing a major in a field you enjoy gives you desirable options no matter how your vet school application turns out. (And you never know, you might even change your mind about what you want to do.)
Remember, no preference is given by veterinary medicine programs for any particular major. You can major in virtually anything and gain admission to veterinary school. That said, however, most students choose majors in the sciences; it's easier to incorporate the veterinary school prerequisites into a science major, and a broad background in biological science is helpful.
Four majors at WSU offer pre-veterinary tracks that incorporate the WSU College of Veterinary Medicine D.V.M. program prerequisites:
In addition to these majors, pre-veterinary students at WSU often major in bioengineering, microbiology, genetics and cell biology, chemistry, biochemistry, biology, natural resource science, and other majors offered by the College of Sciences, the College of Veterinary Medicine, and the College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences.
When you enroll at WSU, visit the Health Professions Student Center first thing.
The expert advisors there can help you choose a major that fits your personal interests, strengths, and goals; and whatever major you choose, they'll also help you work the professional school prerequisites into your schedule.
- Preparing for veterinary school
Acceptance into a professional college of veterinary medicine is very competitive, and strong undergraduate preparation is essential.
To earn a doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM), most students earn a bachelor’s degree, then apply to a four-year professional program in veterinary medicine.
Some programs at WSU offer highly qualified students the opportunity to enter the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine after their third year through usual application procedures. If admitted, they complete their DVM and bachelor of science degrees in a total of seven years.
The prerequisites for most veterinary schools in the U.S. are very similar. However, be sure to check with the admission department at the school where you intend to apply, so that you can fulfill their specific requirements.
Requirements for admission to the WSU veterinary medicine program
You should also be able to demonstrate familiarity with the profession when you apply for veterinary school; many schools require applicants to have experience in a veterinary setting, and the more you know about the profession, the better.
Pre-veterinary advising at WSU
The Health Professions Student Center advises pre-veterinary students in all majors.
The pre-veterinary specialist will work with your academic advisor to help you fulfill professional school requirements and also helps with applications, mock interviews, resumes, and letters of recommendation. If you're interested in pre-veterinary study but aren't sure what major you want, your pre-veterinary specialist can help with that, too.
- Early admission to the WSU veterinary medicine program
Combined program in animal science and veterinary medicine
The Department of Animal Sciences offers highly qualified students with specific career interest in production animal medicine an opportunity for early admission to the WSU doctor of veterinary medicine program.
Selection is by invitation only and requires a minimum entering high school GPA of 3.6 and significant experience with food-producing animals.
More about the animal science/veterinary medicine combined program
Honors early admit program
The Washington State University honors/pre-veterinary medicine program leads to a doctor of veterinary medicine (DVM) degree in seven years (instead of eight).
It consists of three years of unique undergraduate pre-professional education course work and the four-year doctor of veterinary medicine professional program. Students follow honors curriculum in one of four program areas: animal science, neuroscience, wildlife ecology, or zoology.
To be eligible for this exclusive program, students must be members of the Honors College, follow a prescribed curriculum during their first year of college, and maintain a qualifying GPA throughout their undergraduate program.
If you're interested in joining the program, contact the Honors College as soon as soon as you commit to attending Washington State University.
Washington State University
PO Box 642012
Pullman, WA 99164-2012
- Scholarships and financial aid
A variety of state, federal, and university-sponsored programs are available to help students with educational costs.
For all students at WSU
Washington State University awards millions of dollars in financial aid and scholarships to students every year based on financial need, academic merit, or a combination of the two.
To get all the financial help WSU can provide, you'll need to do these two things:
- Complete the University's general scholarship application so you can be eligible for scholarship consideration, including departmental awards.
- Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) so WSU can consider you for aid (scholarships, grants, loans, etc.) based on financial need. Get started here.
Click here for more info about about WSU scholarships and financial aid
For pre-health students
Students in pre-health tracks are eligible for scholarships curated by the Health Professions Student Center. Visit their scholarship page for more information.
- Campus organizations and activities
The WSU Pre-Vet Club offers an academic and social support system for pre-professional students in veterinary medicine.
It promotes scholarship, fellowship, leadership and character among its members through bi-weekly meetings, pertinent trips and activities. Our main goal is to educate members on careers in veterinary medicine and provide information regarding entrance requirements to the various veterinary colleges.
Other clubs and various College Ambassador groups also offer students leadership opportunities and social networking, which are qualities valued in the DVM admission process.