Pre-Medical Pathway

An interdisciplinary Approach

Joel Weiss

Pre – Professional Allied Medicine

Since Plymouth State University does not have a Pre – Medical program, I chose to change my major from an Allied Health Bachelor of Science to the Interdisciplinary Studies as my major.  I created this program to directly match the prerequisites for the Direct Entry MSN program at Massachusetts General Hospital. I family has been in medicine for years; my mother and sister are both RNs, and I wanted to follow in their footsteps. As a young person, I would look through my mother’s medical books and think about my future. I have a passion for helping others and I feel dedicated to this path.

The courses I have selected are the courses that will get me closer to graduate school for a Masters in Nursing. My goal is to be a Family Nurse Practitioner. I have matched the contract courses with the prerequisites, and feel certain that I am preparing myself well for admission.

I will take the two required Interdisciplinary Studies courses. Intro is helping me learn about PSU and how it works to build my own major. In the Senior Seminar, I will create a project and do research that will help me focus on this field.

General Chemistry I (QRCO) and II are required for entry, and also will help me because it will teach me the basics of chemistry which matter for nurses in understanding chemical reactions in the body. These courses also cover basic lab techniques.

Organic Chemistry I and II will offer me more lab experience, and I am looking forward to expanding my knowledge of Chemistry because I enjoy the field.

Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II (and labs) are required for entry and are also foundational for nurses. To understand the human body and how and why it works and its physicality is central to nursing.

Applied Nutrition helped me understand which choices are healthy in strengthening immunity and preventing disease, and how BMI relates to wellness. Nutrition science is a key area of health.

Stress Management will help me in stressful situations in dealing with patients who have difficult diagnoses. Nursing is a very stressful job, and I know that clinical rotations will be a challenge for me, so this course is very important. It will also help me work with patients who are facing illness.

I took Life-Span Development Psychology, General Psychology, and Disorders in Childhood and Adolescence in order to gain a psychology background to prepare me for specific areas in nursing such as gerontology and adolescent medicine. When you treat someone medically, it is good to have an understanding of their other issues so you can treat them as a whole person.

Epidemiology and Evidence-Based Medicine is an excellent choice for my program because it will introduce ethical questions about testing and screening and help me understand risk factors and disease outcomes.

Women’s Health Issues is a course I am looking forward to because it will prepare me for certain nursing specialties and rotations, and help me understand how gender plays a role in health-related issues.

In addition to these courses, I will also be taking Biology I and II and Microbiology. Microbiology is required for admission and Bio I and II are prerequisites for that course. I feel certain that I will be well-prepared with this set of courses.

I met with the Director of Nursing, Jean Coffey to discuss my chosen career path as a Nurse Practitioner. I would transfer into the Nursing Program but, there is a waiting list and I would have to wait another year or so get in, because it is a four-year program with a set course schedule.  I am looking for a direct entry MSN program and unfortunately, PSU does not offer one currently. Jean recommended a DEN program as a better fit then the PSU Nursing program. I plan to consult with a Nurse Practitioner while attending the IDS program.  I also am planning on doing some job shadowing while in school. I also met with Mike Son from Biology, Anil Waghe from Chemistry, and Robin DeRosa from Interdisciplinary Studies. I appreciate the help from these many advisors. This IDS program fits perfectly like a puzzle in the healthcare system. I would use an interdisciplinary approach to healthcare as a Nurse Practitioner. An interdisciplinary approach can help avoid risk averse thinking by weighing up the risk against benefits for the patient.  An interdisciplinary approach can improve patient outcomes.  An interdisciplinary approach relies on health professionals from different disciplines, along with the patient, working collaboratively as a team.  This type of teamwork will be my ideal way of thinking and I believe the

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