Persons interested in attending medical school through a joint program offered by the University of the Virgin Islands and Boston University are invited to a public presentation from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 30. The session will take place in Room T-101 of the UVI Teacher Education Building on the St. Thomas Campus, with a videoconference link to the Great Hall on the Albert A. Sheen Campus on St. Croix.
The program – the Boston University Early Medical School Selection Program (EMSSP) – should be of special interest to UVI students and Virgin Islands high school students and their families, according to UVI Interim Dean of the College of Science and Mathematics Dr. Sandra Romano.
Dr. Samantha Kaplan, director of the Boston University Early Medical School Selection Program, will make the presentation. She will also interview potential applicants for the program while visiting UVI on Jan. 30. UVI students interested in applying to the program should contact Dr. Romano, who also serves as UVI’s liaison with the program. "In addition to providing details on the EMSSP program, Dr. Kaplan will also discuss the general process of applying to and attending medical school," said Dr. Romano. "The presentation is also scheduled in the evening to make it easier for high school students and their parents to attend," she said. "We really encourage parents to come along with their students."
UVI students selected for the program will spend their freshman through junior years at UVI, and the summers, after their sophomore and junior years, and their senior year at Boston University. Upon the successful completion of the requirements, including maintaining a grade point average of at least 3.0, the students receive their bachelor’s degrees from UVI and enter the medical school at Boston University, having completed some first-year medical school requirements.
UVI is one of only 14 undergraduate colleges selected by the Boston University Medical School to participate in the program, which admits academically talented undergraduate science majors to the medical school early. Participating colleges are selected based on the strengths of their science programs and faculty.
The EMSSP program at UVI has produced more than 25 physicians in the more than 20 years it has existed. It is designed to offer an early and decompressed transition from university to medical school curriculum.
According to Dr. Romano, UVI currently has five students in the program. Denese Dorival, Nerissa Washington and Marisela Narcisse, who studied at UVI through their junior year, are in their senior year at BU. Two UVI juniors, Jeson LeBlanc and JoAnn Lewis-Thomas, are also participating and are scheduled to study at BU next year. All are biology majors.
Students and parents who have questions about the EMSSP or the presentation should contact Dr. Romano at (340) 693-1230. More information on the program is also available at the UVI Pre-Health Profession Advising web page.