Des Moines University provides opportunity with summer program


(Des Moines, IA) – For the last three years, sophomore- and junior-year college students from across Iowa and throughout the nation, half of whom were minority students, have had a chance to visit Des Moines University (DMU) and experience what studying to be a medical professional would be like.

    This year, the Medical Professional Summer Institute – offered free of charge except for meals and travel to and from Des Moines – enrolled nine undergraduate students.

    Students spent a week on the DMU campus learning core practices of the osteopathic, podiatric, physician assistant, physical therapy, health care administration and public health programs. In particular, students experienced laboratory research opportunities, were exposed to the medical education environment and various medical procedures, learned about financial aid and scholarship opportunities, received an assessment of their study skills and received an introduction to Des Moines – including housing options and cultural resources.

   “This program shows Des Moines University’s commitment to quality health care education, giving undergraduates the opportunity to learn more about the profession, the University and the Des Moines community,” said Duane Murray, DMU multicultural and international student advisor.

    According to Murray, approximately 50 percent of the students who have enrolled in past Institutes have decided to attend DMU.

    “I attended the Institute because I’m studying to be a nurse and wanted more information about other health care professions,” said Erin Barnes, a student from DMACC’s Urban Campus who attended this summer. “After learning more about a lot of different medical fields, I know I still want to be in the medical profession but may want to become a physician assistant instead. Now I know there are other options.”

    Of the students who attended this summer, four were from the Des Moines area. Students came from a range of undergraduate schools – the University of Northern Iowa, Iowa State University, DMACC’s Urban Campus, Xavier, Russ College and South Carolina State – an increase from the first year when attendees were all from the same undergraduate school.

    Students considering the Institute should have a compelling interest in the sciences, demonstrate high achievement qualities and be a college sophomore or junior. To learn more about the Institute, visit or call 515.271.1701.

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