Tips on Applying to MD/MPH Programs?

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No One Someone

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Aug 23, 2015
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I am interested in pursuing an MD/MPH program. I was wondering if anyone knows what it takes for admission or how the evaluation process/what schools are looking for is different than just applying as an MD. I am seeing very little about what it takes/ what qualities are desired/ what experiences are important for pursuing an MD/MPH. If anyone knows anything about these programs, any advice is appreciated!


Full Member
7+ Year Member
Feb 17, 2013
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MPH programs are far less competitive than MD programs, so applying to MD/MPH programs isn't all that complicated. And it's nothing like applying to MD/PhD programs where you actually get funded (which makes the application process much, much, more different).

It's been some years since I last applied for MD/MPH programs (settled for MD only, but could have). They just want to see that it makes sense that you do both degrees rather than one or the other (i.e., you know why you're doing it). I know that sounds cliche, but it just has to read well on your personal statement and secondary essays of why you want to add on the MPH.

I can't really think of any qualities that they would look for in an MPH graduate that an MD graduate wouldn't already have (desire to serve, improve health, etc). In terms of experience, it certainly helps to have public health experience, be it research, publications, or internships with public health organizations, but it's not absolutely necessary. As long as you have passion and as long as that communicates through your writing and interview, you'll be golden.

Also, lots of people choose to just go to MD programs only and then apply for the MPH at a separate institution between 3rd and 4th year of med school. This might be useful if you want to do an MPH at a top school like Harvard or Hopkins but may not be able to get into their MD programs.