PharmD/MD Dual Degree Program
The Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy (EMSOP) offers an innovative PharmD/MD dual degree option, developed jointly with the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (RWJMS). To be eligible to apply, you must be in the 2nd or 3rd year of the PharmD professional program at EMSOP.
The PharmD-MD dual degree program, the first in the U.S., is designed to prepare students for a new model of health care by fully integrating the professions of pharmacy and medicine. We are seeking future leaders to develop truly unified, interprofessional education and practice that builds on the strengths of different health care disciplines to give patients the best possible outcomes. Interested students—who must be currently enrolled in the PharmD program at the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy at Rutgers—apply for admission in the second or third professional year of the program. Successful applicants will complete the PharmD on schedule and then matriculate into the MD program at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine.
Application Eligibility and Process
Interested students are urged to make an appointment with a member of the School of Pharmacy PharmD/ MD committee. Students may apply in the fall semester of the P2 or the P3 (second or third professional year). Note: Unsuccessful P2 applicants may strengthen their qualifications and reapply in the P3 year.
Calendar for Application Process
- Submission of application, essay delineating interest, letters of recommendation; applications due first week of January.
- In planning for rotations, prospective dual degree students are strongly encouraged to preference sites that provide strong clinical opportunities to work alongside medical students.
- EMSOP’s PharmD/MD committee reviews written materials: letter describing interest, application form, and three letters of recommendation [see application form for full details].
- EMSOP evaluates applications and sets schedule for interviews for selected
- EMSOP dual degree committee interviews selected
- EMSOP dual degree committee evaluates interviewees and forwards names of recommended candidates to the Admissions Committee of Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.
February to May
- RWJMS Admissions Committee evaluates candidates, schedules interviews, and notifies students about their status.
- Once admitted into the dual degree program, students complete the pharmacy program, including their APPE rotations. They are strongly encouraged to seek opportunities to work with students in other health professions, particularly in medicine, and to participate in interprofessional and extracurricular activities with medical students.
- Dual degree students complete the PharmD degree in May of the P4 year and are strongly encouraged to sit for the NAPLEX and MPJE exams over the Students begin their training at RWJMS in July, about two months after their pharmacy graduation.
Qualifications and Selection Criteria
To be considered, applicants must have excellent academic records, typically with a cumulative professional program GPA of 3.5 or better when applying and must maintain academic excellence for the remainder of the PharmD program.* While excellence in academic achievement is important, clinical and/or research experience, service, and leadership are also essential. Prospective students should pursue opportunities to engage in clinical settings, participate in interprofessional programs, and work with student organizations to provide community service in health‐related fields.
*Important: If the applicant’s GPA is less than 3.5, he/she should submit evidence of extraordinary achievement in clinical experience, service to society, research, extracurricular activities, and other factors that indicate strong potential for the program.
Applicants submit a letter to the School of Pharmacy dual degree committee with the following information:
- Reasons for applying – how this program will meet your long‐term career goals and
- Clinical experience, especially employment or volunteer experience in pharmacies
- Research experience and accomplishments, e.g., engagement in the research honors program, lab experience, publications, etc.
- Service to society, e.g., work in soup kitchens, tutoring underprivileged children, service in developing countries, etc.
- Relevant extracurricular activities, including pharmacy active participation in pharmacy
- Competitive internships
- Special educational achievements and honors, e.g., competitive scholarships
- Bachelor’s or graduate degree (if applicable; include date conferred)
The Pharmacy committee invites selected applicants for interviews and then forwards recommendations to the RWJMS Admissions Committee. RWJMS makes the final determination on admissions, based on evaluation of all application materials, including the recommendations of the EMSOP committee and a series of “mini interviews” with RWJMS faculty.
Applicants are notified about admission in the spring semester. Dual degree students are strongly encouraged to take a leadership role in interprofessional education programs as they complete the PharmD and begin the MD program.
Once students begin the RWJMS curriculum, specialized enrichment options may be available to take advantage of students’ extensive knowledge of pharmacology, pharmacotherapy, and pharmacy practice. Dual degree students can play an important role in strengthening the program by building opportunities for medical students and pharmacy students to work together, inside and outside of the classroom.
If you are interested in pursuing this opportunity and have any questions, please arrange to meet with Professor Grace Guo (Chair) (firstname.lastname@example.org), Senior Associate Dean Carol Goldin (Co-Chair) (email@example.com), or any of the other members of the EMSOP committee.
EMSOP PharmD/MD Dual Degree Committee Members
Grace Guo, Professor, Pharmacology and Toxicology (Committee Chair)
Carol Goldin, Senior Associate Dean (Committee Co‐Chair)
Joseph Barone, Dean and Professor II
Luigi Brunetti, Associate Professor, Pharmaceutics and Pharmacy Practice
Suzie Chen, Distinguished Professor & Chair, Chemical Biology
Deepali Dixit, Clinical Associate Professor, Pharmacy Practice
Donna Feudo, Associate Dean for Experiential Education and Clinical Services
Arash Hatefi, Professor, Pharmaceutics
Debra Laskin, Distinguished Professor & Chair, Pharmacology and Toxicology
Megan Maroney, Clinical Associate Professor, Pharmacy Practice
Yekaterina Opsha, Clinical Associate Professor, Pharmacy Practice
Mary Wagner, Associate Professor, Pharmacy Practice
Revised September 13, 2023