Medical School Linkages

Medical school linkages can be a great way to put your medical education and career on the fast track. Students who are admitted to a medical school via a linkage can accelerate their enrollment by starting their medical studies in the term following completion of their post-baccalaureate program, thus bypassing the glide year.

A linkage is a special relationship between a post-baccalaureate premedical program and a medical school. The participating schools listed below have agreed to give Northwestern University premedicine students who qualify for admission the opportunity to enroll directly after finishing the requirements of the premedicine post-baccalaureate program.

Fiona Fimmel

[the science curriculum] way over-prepared me, in a good way. I’m sure that there were questions that the MCAT could have thrown at me that I only would have been able to answer because I took specific classes with professors who taught at a distinguished level.”

Fiona Fimmel, SPS Premed ’19, accepted to George Washington University School of Medicine through linkage program


Frequently Asked Questions

Which schools participate in the Linkage Program?

Who is eligible to apply to the linkage programs?

Students in the Premedicine or Premedicine Completion program must meet the following criteria to apply to one of our linkage programs: 

  • Have demonstrated and maintain a strong academic record, including a specified minimum GPA (if required)
  • Show sufficient clinical, volunteer or research experience
  • Complete all premedical requirements by the end of the program in the spring quarter (For both the 21-month and 15-month tracks)

Can I apply to multiple linkage programs at once?

No. Students are only allowed to apply to a single linkage program. Students in our program are encouraged to work with their academic adviser to review which linkage programs best aligns with their mission.

What is an advantage and disadvantage of the linkage program?

The primary advantage a linkage program provides is being able to apply to a medical school while still completing premedicine courses and, if accepted, eliminate the glide year. The disadvantage is that our linkage partners may not be the right fit for everyone, and some students may wish to apply to schools that better align with their goals.

What happens if I’m not accepted to a linkage program?

You will continue with the medical school application process after the SPS program during the glide year.

Am I eligible for the linkage program if I’ve already applied to medical school or have taken the MCAT?

Linkage programs requirements vary by medical school, and some will not accept applicants who have taken the MCAT or applied to medical school. It is best to check the linkage program requirements for each program.

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