Virginia is for lovers and aspiring physicians. Tucked away in the beautiful and historical landscapes of Virginia are numerous excellent and sought-after medical schools.
In this blog, we will comprehensively go over what you need to know about medical schools in Virginia, including background information about each medical school, mission statements, what it’s like to attend medical school in Virginia, a list of all medical schools in Virginia, tips for getting accepted into medical schools in Virginia, and helpful admission and tuition statistics.
Attending medical school in Virginia comes with numerous benefits. Home to six medical schools, Virginia draws a large percentage of many out-of-state medical students. Virginia is also home to one of the most prestigious and notable MD programs in the United States: the University of Virginia—ranked #6 in primary care and #29 in research by the US News & World Report.
Virginia is also a great place to live for students and young professionals as its unique atmosphere blends the best of both indoor and outdoor activities. There are many museums and cultural institutions that preserve deep American historical roots, and several natural landscapes to explore like the Appalachian Trail, Shenandoah National Park, Virginia Beach, and Luray Caverns. The DMV area—DC, Maryland, and Virginia—is breathtakingly beautiful in general, and you will have no shortage of adventures to go on and sights to see.
There are six medical schools in Virginia: four MD programs and two DO (osteopathic) programs. Below, you will find a complete list of all medical schools in Virginia, as well as information on each medical school’s background, mission, admissions, and tuition.
Eastern Virginia Medical School (EVMS) is a public medical school located in Norfolk, Virginia. It opened its doors in 1973 after a grassroots effort transformed the landscape of medical care in the region.
EVMS prides itself on a community-oriented approach to delivering excellent healthcare to diverse local patient populations, including former and active military personnel, retirees, rural and underserved communities, and racial minorities.
“Eastern Virginia Medical School is an academic health center dedicated to achieving excellence in medical and health professions, education, research and patient care.
We value creating and fostering a diverse and cohesive faculty, professional staff and student body as the surest way to achieve our mission. Adhering to the highest ethical standards, we will strive to improve the health of our community and to be recognized as a national center of intellectual and clinical strength in medicine and Health Professions.
Our commitment to ensuring institutional effectiveness is demonstrated by the continuous assessment processes we use to improve program performance and student learning outcomes.”
Students should keep the following admission and tuition statistics in mind:
Here are some important aspects and distinctions of the MD/MPH and MD/MBA dual degree programs:
DOs are licensed in every state and practice the full scope of medicine, prioritizing holistic treatment and healthcare approaches. VCOM is unique in that 48% of its students are from rural populations under 30,000. The school is committed to providing equitable healthcare to rural and underserved communities both locally and internationally.
“The mission of the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine (VCOM) is to prepare globally-minded, community-focused physicians to meet the needs of rural and medically underserved populations and promote research to improve human health.”
Please familiarize yourself with the following admission and tuition statistics:
Liberty University College of Osteopathic Medicine (LUCOM) is another DO program located in Lynchburg, Virginia. It is a relatively new school that opened its doors in 2014, making it the second osteopathic college in Virginia and the thirtieth in the United States. LUCOM is a private Christian school.
“Liberty University College of Osteopathic Medicine (LUCOM) exists to educate osteopathic physicians in a Christian environment. LUCOM prepares physicians who dedicate themselves to excellence in osteopathic medicine through service toward their fellow man, lifelong learning, and the advancement of medical knowledge. Instilling the Christian values of integrity and professionalism, LUCOM trains physicians who will provide ethical, compassionate, competent and patient-centered osteopathic medical care.”
Prospective LUCOM applicants should be aware of the following admission and tuition statistics:
University of Virginia School of Medicine (UVA SoM) is located in Charlottesville, Virginia. Not only is UVA SoM a highly competitive and prestigious medical school that is consistently ranked as one of the top medical schools in the United States, but it also has a rich history. It was founded in 1819 by none other than Thomas Jefferson.
It is the tenth oldest medical school in the United States, it housed the country’s first anatomical theater where students could observe surgical procedures, and it was the first school in the nation to institute a medical library dedicated to acquiring the best and some of the rarest medical books of that era.
UVA SoM consistently produces some of the top physicians and leaders in healthcare in the nation. The US News & World Report ranks UVA SoM #6 in primary care and #29 in research. UVA SoM prioritizes collaboration of a close-knit community, hands-on experiences, research, scholarship, service to others, and quality patient care.
“At the University of Virginia School of Medicine, our primary purpose is to educate and train physicians and scientists to help people achieve healthy, productive lives and to advance knowledge in the medical sciences.
We achieve our mission through:
Fostering humanitarian and caring attitudes that motivate us to give our best to maintain health and to alleviate pain and suffering.”
Students should be aware of the following admission and tuition statistics:
Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine (VCU SoM) is located in Richmond, Virginia. VCU SoM opened its doors after the Medical College of Virginia joined with Richmond Professional Institute. VCU SoM is rich in history with its origins rooted in the Civil War as a facility that was used by the Confederate Army. Presently, VCU SoM is the only Level I Trauma Center in the area and serves as a major referral center for the Southeast.
“The mission of the School of Medicine is to provide preeminent education to physicians and scientists in order to improve the quality of health care for humanity. Through innovative, scholarly activity and a diverse educational context, the School seeks to create and apply new knowledge, and to provide and continuously improve systems of medical and science education.
Furthermore, it is our mission to develop more effective health care practices to address the needs of the diverse populations we serve, and to provide distinguished leadership in the advancement of medicine and science.”
Please be mindful of the following admission and tuition statistics:
Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine (VTC SoM) is located in Roanoke, Virginia. VTC SoM is unique because it is a public-private partnership between a research university (Virginia Tech) and a significant healthcare institution (Carilion Clinic).
VTC SoM has implemented four “value domains” as part of its curriculum. The purpose of the value domains is to drive the medical school’s educational objectives, equip students to be life-long learners, and set them up for success as physicians. The four value domains are basic science, clinical science, research, and health systems science and interprofessional practice (HSSIP).
The basic science value domain lays the foundation of medicine and is incorporated throughout the curriculum in the preclinical (Phase I) and clinical (Phase II) components.
The clinical science value domain introduces real patient interaction in the first week of school. Students learn and practice clinical skills during their pre-clerkship years. Students have the benefit of working with interprofessional faculty in on-site examination rooms. The campus also has a new state-of-the-art simulation center where students can learn and practice clinical skills. The clinical science value domain prepares students for clinical clerkships, elective rotations, and the national board exams.
The research value domain is incorporated throughout the entire four years of medical school. This value domain trains students to become scientist physicians. Students must conduct original, hypothesis-driven research that should span 3.5 years total. Students are allotted $1000 per year in years 2 through 4 for research supplies.
The HSSIP value domain is studied throughout the four years of medical school and involves the study of how health systems work. HSSIP delves deep into the roles between various healthcare providers, and students gain a better understanding of the way healthcare is delivered to various patient populations.
“To develop physician thought leaders through inquiry, research, and discovery, using an innovative curriculum based upon adult learning methods in a patient-centered context. Our graduates are physicians with outstanding clinical skills and significantly enhanced research capabilities who will remain life-long learners. They have an understanding of the importance of health systems science and interprofessionalism to enable them to more effectively function as part of a modern healthcare team.”
Prospective applicants should keep the following admission and tuition statistics in mind:
Getting accepted into medical schools in Virginia is no easy feat, as is evidenced by acceptance rates, GPA, and MCAT requirements. Our best recommendation is to look at your academic standings with a critical eye and ensure that your exam scores and GPA (total and science) not only meet the medical school’s minimum requirements but exceed them. Additionally, you can work on extracurriculars, volunteering, and clinical experience.
The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) has a list of core competencies for entering medical students. These core competencies include pre-professional competencies, thinking and reasoning competencies, and science competencies. Please carefully review all AAMC core competencies, and ensure that your application materials incorporate the competencies that medical schools value in successful candidates.
When applying to medical schools in Virginia, it is also essential to familiarize yourself with each school’s selection factors. Selection factors outline exactly how admissions committees will review your application materials and the key things they will look for in successful candidates.
Examples of selection factors include academic records (i.e., total and science GPA, MCAT scores, official transcripts), US residency/citizenship requirements, criminal and background check, undergraduate coursework requirements, desirable qualities in a physician, and more. Prospective candidates should carefully review the selection factors for medical schools in Virginia, and tailor their applications to meet each school’s specific admissions criteria:
It is recommended that you thoroughly follow each medical school’s application process and admissions guidelines. Every medical school has specific requirements. For example, some medical schools require three letters of recommendation with your application, while others require up to six letters of recommendation. When in doubt, always go to the medical school’s website and familiarize yourself with their processes, requirements, and deadlines.
You can also schedule a free consultation with our experts who will help you with all of your medical school admissions consulting needs.
#94-122 in Best Medical Schools: Research
#49 in Best Medical Schools: Primary Care (tie)
#33 in Physician Assistant (tie)
#138 in Public Health (tie)
#94-122 in Best Medical Schools: Research
#94-122 in Best Medical Schools: Primary Care
Currently, LUCOM is unranked. More information can be found here.
#29 in Best Medical Schools: Research (tie)
#6 in Best Medical Schools: Primary Care
#68 in Best Medical Schools: Research (tie)
#49 in Best Medical Schools: Primary Care (tie)
#81 in Best Medical Schools: Research (tie)
#94-122 in Best Medical Schools: Primary Care
Medical schools in Virginia offer comprehensive financial aid and scholarship opportunities. Please review the following financial aid links for each medical school’s financial aid options.
You can earn a Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) credential. The MD credential is earned at a conventional allopathic medical school, and the DO credential is earned at an osteopathic medical school. Both MDs and DOs work side-by-side and are fully licensed and eligible for board certification.
The main difference between an MD and a DO is the approach in patient treatment. MDs prioritize a symptom resolution approach, and DOs prioritize holistic treatment options. Please read this comprehensive guide to learn more about the similarities and differences of MDs and DOs.
Without a doubt, the most important selection factors for admission to medical school are your overall GPA, science GPA, and MCAT scores. Applicants who fall short of the minimum required GPA and MCAT scores are rejected more often than applicants who have higher grades and scores. With that said, many medical schools are increasingly implementing holistic approaches in reviewing students.
For example, personal statements, extracurricular activities, and letters of recommendation are important selection factors. If you fall slightly below your desired GPA and MCAT scores, a strong, effective, and compelling personal statement may encourage admissions committees to invite you for an interview. Likewise, other strong and effective materials in your application package will give you a competitive edge.
Your experiences on campus are important for your overall satisfaction and well-being while you attend medical school in Virginia. Please carefully review what each medical school’s campus life has to offer:
With so many excellent medical schools to choose from in the United States, medical schools in Virginia offer quality programs to further your education and career as a physician. Our guide will prepare you on what you need to know about medical schools in Virginia so that you can select the best program for you.
Successful candidates will be mindful of each medical school’s admissions requirements, application procedures, important dates and deadlines, and admission and tuition statistics. We wish you the best of luck as you apply to the medical school of your dreams.