Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM)

Our newest program!

The Health Professions Advising Office is pleased to announce a new medical school affiliation program with Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM)!  This program allows students to apply (and be accepted) to PCOM during their sophomore year at Villanova.  Accepted students must complete their undergraduate degrees at Villanova, meeting standards and stipulations set forth by the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.  Upon graduation, they matriculate directly into PCOM without undergoing any additional application process.   NOTE:  This is an early assurance program, but NOT a fast-track program.

What is osteopathic medicine?

Osteopathic physicians are trained to look at the whole person, including their context, rather than to focus solely on symptoms.  There is an emphasis on seeing the patient as partner, helping patients maintain good health, and working with the body’s natural healing mechanisms in treatment of disease.  Osteopathic schools of medicine require the same prerequisites, the same entrance examination (MCAT), and train students to practice in the same specialties as allopathic (MD-granting) colleges.  Osteopathic colleges have a strong commitment to bettering the lives of people wherever they live and seek to recruit doctors from diverse backgrounds to meet the needs of diverse communities.

Currently, more than 20 per cent of medical students in the United States are training to become osteopathic physicians.

For more information on osteopathic medicine, visit the website of the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine:  https://www.aacom.org/become-a-doctor/about-om

For information on PCOM, its history and its mission, please visit their website:


What is the application process?

Information sessions are held in the fall semester.  Interested students should plan to attend one of these sessions, where information on osteopathic medicine and on PCOM are presented and the application process is explained.  This is also a great opportunity for questions.  Applications must be submitted to the HPA Office in early November.  (Application deadline is announced at information sessions and published on HPA Blackboard.)  One letter of recommendation from a faculty member (preferably science) is required.  Two are recommended, with the second letter coming from a faculty member in any department, an activity supervisor, or an employer.  Finalists will be contacted for an interview.  Decisions will be announced in December.

I just heard about this and I am a junior.  May I still apply?

Applications for this program are limited to sophomores.  You can still apply to PCOM during the regular application process, once you have completed your premedical coursework and have taken (or have scheduled) the MCAT.

I am planning to transfer to Villanova, will I be able to apply when I arrive?

No, because all prerequisite coursework needs to be done at Villanova. 

What standards and stipulations do I need to meet if I am chosen?

  • You will need to complete all prerequisite coursework; most of these courses must have been completed at Villanova.
  • You must earn a minimum 3.25 gpa by the end of junior year, with no grade lower than a C in the prerequisite courses.  (Note:  C- is lower than C.)
  • You must score in the 50th percentile or higher on each section of the MCAT exam and have taken the exam no later than fall semester of senior year.
  • You must submit an application to PCOM through the AACOMAS portal no later than October 31 of senior year and submit the PCOM supplemental application no later than November 30 of senior year.
  • You must submit a letter of evaluation by an osteopathic physician.
  • You must successfully interview at PCOM senior year.

Can I still apply to PCOM if I am not selected for this program?

Yes!  The Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine welcomes applications from Villanova students during the regular application cycle.  PCOM also hosts information sessions on their campus for the medical school, as well as for the graduate programs in allied health fields.  Watch for announcements through HPA Blackboard and through the pre-health student clubs!