You are here

Applying to Health Professions Schools

Get application instructions for health profession schools here. 

Important: Make sure you are following the application timeline and have requested a committee review if you are applying to medical, dental, or veterinary school.

Application Instructions

Medical School  

Apply early: Medical schools have rolling admissions policies. Submit your AMCAS (MD) and AACOMAS (D.O.) materials as close to early June as possible. (Note: Texas and offshore schools have their own application processes.) August is likely too late. For Fall 2021 medical school admission you must have your AMCAS application processed by July 31, 2020 to obtain a committee letter.
    •    Consider applying to about 20-25 schools: Use the online MSAR (M.D.) and Osteopathic Medical College Information Book (osteopathic) to help guide your choices. These resources provide acceptance rates for in and out of state applicants, special requirements, test score and GPA ranges, etc. Also consider a ranking guide (e.g., U.S. News or Princeton Review) but remember these are imperfect and incomplete.
    •    Wait for MCAT: It is generally a good idea to wait until you have your MCAT scores in hand to apply. Applying with a poor score can result in an unsuccessful application. However, if you are confident you will score well, you can apply to a few schools on June 1 to start processing your application with AMCAS/AACOMAS. 
    •    Complete the AMCAS (M.D.)/AACOMAS (osteopathic) application.
           •    Start this early, ideally in early May. This is tedious and time consuming but it is important to do a good job. You should be able to use parts of your autobiography in crafting your personal statement but these essays are much shorter.
           •    If the instructions say to enter your credit hours directly as they appear on your transcript, use course units. If you need to use a conversion: 1 Holy Cross course = 4 credits and scale up as necessary (1.25 courses = 5 credits, etc.). AMCAS asks you to report course units as they appear on your transcript.
    •    Indicate that your letter will be in the form of a "committee letter." For osteopathic (AACOMAS) schools, set a very late "deadline" for letters — we will get the letter in as soon as we can and this deadline is not helpful.
    •     Enter Miles Cahill as the primary contact. Enter the email address healthprofessions@holycross.edu (NOT Prof. Cahill's direct email). If additional letters will be sent by us, do not list them as "additional authors." We will send them from our office in one electronic packet.
    •    Request official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to AMCAS/AACOMAS. Do this as soon as possible. The request form is available in the AMCAS/AACOMAS application and should be sent to the Registrar's Office. Do this very early, before anything else.
    •    After you have submitted your applications, complete the Google Form to request your committee letter be written (or letter packet sent). This form asks for your final list of schools as well as your AMCAS and/or AACOMAS ID, and MCAT scores This also allows you to provide special instructions for certain school requirements. Submit once. Do not submit this form until you have submitted your graduate applications.
    •    Regularly inform the Health Professions Advising Office of every interview invitation you receive as well as every school that accepts or rejects you by emailing Prof. Cahill (mcahill@holycross.edu) and healthprofessions@holycross.edu. (Feel free to do this in batches, every few weeks.)
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student.
    •    Observe the traffic rules, deposit rules, etc., carefully.

Dental School  

    •    Apply early: Dental schools have rolling admissions policies. Submit your AADSAS materials as close to early June as possible. Use the ADEA Official Guide to Dental Schools to help guide your choices. This provides statistics on accepted students in addition to information about each dental school in the country.
    •    Wait for Dental Admission Test (DAT): It is generally a good idea to wait until you have taken your Dental Admission Test to apply. Applying with a poor score can result in an unsuccessful application. You will receive a preliminary DAT score the day you take the test; you may apply with this preliminary score.
    •    Complete the AADSAS application.
           •    Start this early. This is tedious and time consuming but it is important to do a good job. You should be able to use parts of your autobiography in crafting your personal statement but these essays are much shorter.  
           •    If the instructions say to enter your credit hours directly, use course units. If you need to use a conversion, apply the ratio of 1 Holy Cross course to 4 credits, and scale as needed (1.25 courses = 5 credits, etc.).
            •    Enter Miles Cahill as the primary contact with the email healthprofessions@holycross.edu (NOT Prof. Cahill's direct email). 
    •    Request official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to AADSAS. Do this as soon as possible, before anything else.
    •    After you submit your applications, complete the Google Form to request a committee letter (or packet). This form asks for your list of schools as well as your AADSAS ID, and DAT scores. Submit once. Do not submit this form until you have submitted your graduate applications.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student.>
    •    Inform the Health Professions Advising Office of every interview invitation you receive as well as every school that accepts or rejects you by emailing Prof. Cahill (mcahill@holycross.edu) and the office (healthprofessions@holycross.edu).

Nursing School

    •    Apply early: Nurse practitioner schools often have rolling admissions policies. Submit your materials to individual schools as early as possible. However, as nursing programs have different start dates (August, January, June, etc.), program deadlines vary considerably.
    •    There is a new centralized application service for nursing programs (NursingCAS) but not all nursing schools use it. You may need to apply to each school individually.
    •    Consult with your Holy Cross health professions advisor about which letters you should solicit.
    •    Send individual school or NursingCAS letter of reference request links to your references (one may be your Holy Cross health professions advisor if you ask in advance).
    •    Send official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to the nursing schools. Do this as soon as possible.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student. After the application cycle is over, please send us a list of the schools you applied to and the result (matriculated, accepted, interviewed, rejected) at each.

Pharmacy School

    •    Apply early: Pharmacy schools have rolling admissions policies. Submit your PharmCAS materials as early as possible.
    •    Complete the PharmCAS application.
    •    Consult with your Holy Cross health professions advisor about which letters you should solicit.
    •    Send PharmCAS letter of reference request links to your references (one may be your Holy Cross HP advisor if you arrange it ahead of time). Schools vary in letter requirements. Some will accept a committee letter, some will accept letters from PharmCAS and others require letters to be sent directly to schools. Consult individual school websites and follow instructions carefully.
    •    Request official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to PharmCAS. Do this as soon as possible.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student. After the application cycle is over, please send us a list of the schools you applied to and the result (matriculated, accepted, interviewed, rejected) at each.

Physical Therapy School  

    •    Apply early: Physical therapy schools have rolling admissions policies. Submit your PTCAS materials as close to early July as possible.
    •    Complete the PTCAS application.
    •    Consult with your Holy Cross health professions advisor about which letters you should solicit.
    •    Send PTCAS letter of reference request links to your references (one may be your Holy Cross health professions advisor).
    •    Complete the P.T. hours section of PTCAS so your observation hours can be verified.
    •    Request official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to PTCAS. Do this as soon as possible.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student. After the application cycle is over, please send us a list of the schools you applied to and the result (matriculated, accepted, interviewed, rejected) at each.

Physician Assistant School  

    •    Apply early: Physician assistant schools have rolling admissions policies. Submit your CASPA materials as early as possible. However, as P.A. programs have different start dates (August, January, June, etc.), program deadlines vary considerably. CASPA provides a guideline for application dates.
    •    Complete the CASPA application.
    •    Consult with your Holy Cross health professions advisor about which letters you should solicit.
    •    Send CASPA letter of reference request links to your references (one may be your Holy Cross health professions advisor and the other references).
    •    Request official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to CASPA. Do this as soon as possible.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student. After the application cycle is over, please send us a list of the schools you applied to and the result (matriculated, accepted, interviewed, rejected) at each.

Veterinary School  

    •    Veterinary schools generally do not have rolling admissions policies which gives you more time. Submit your VMCAS materials well ahead of the deadline. Request your committee letter in the summer if at all possible.
    •    Complete the VMCAS application.
            •    Complete the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine and Tufts University application separately from VMCAS.
    •    Send official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar’s Office and any other places you took classes to VMCAS. Do this as soon as possible.
    •    Complete the Google Form to request your committee letter/packet. This asks for your list of schools as well as your GRE scores. Submit once. Do not submit this form until you have submitted your graduate applications.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student.
    •    Inform the Health Professions Advising Office of every interview invitation you receive as well as every school that accepts or rejects you by emailing Prof. Cahill (mcahill@holycross.edu) and the office healthprofessions@holycross.edu.

Other Schools  

    •    Take the entrance exam early. Some schools require an entrance exam (e.g. OPT for optometry), some require the GRE, and some do not require a standardized test at all. Take the exam early enough so you can evaluate the scores before you apply.
    •    Apply early: Many schools have rolling admissions policies. Submit your materials as early as possible for programs with rolling admissions.
    •    Most schools have their own applications. Some schools have centralized application services. Follow instructions carefully.
    •    Consult with your Holy Cross health professions advisor about which letters you should solicit.
    •    Send letter of reference request links or forms to your references (one may be your Holy Cross health professions advisor)
    •    Request official transcripts from Holy Cross Registrar's Office and any other places you took classes to be sent to schools. Do this as soon as possible.
    •    Periodically review the list of schools where you have open applications or acceptances. After you are accepted at a school, if there are other schools you will definitely not go to, please withdraw your application to open up a spot for another student.
    •    After the application cycle is over, please send us a list of the schools you applied to and the result (matriculated, accepted, interviewed, rejected) at each.