My career interest is very complex. It is science based of course, but it also surrounds itself with a combination of biology, genetics, and psychology. This might sound like a bunch of different subjects and majors, but they all go together believe it or not. To sum it all up, I would like to be a Genetics Counselor. Genetic counseling is a process in which patients at risk of an inherited disorder are advised of the consequences of his or her disorder and the options open to them in management. Genetic Counselors research genetic diseases, interpret family history, and also provide counseling for patients in order to perform testing and other procedures. I have chosen this career because of my interest in science. I love psychology, but the idea of having science and genetics incorporated into is awesome. I have also chosen this career because my favorite things to do include researching and helping others.
Carlow University is located on Fifth Avenue in Oakland. To be accepted into Carlow, certain requirements have to be met. Carlow requires a minimum 3.0 GPA along with reasonable SAT scores. There is no specific set of numbers but students receiving a score below 1000 on the combined math and reading section are strongly encouraged to retake the SAT. Carlow does not offer the specific major titled “Genetic Counselor”, but it does offer a Bachelors of Science in Biology. Obtaining a Bachelors degree in biology opens up a range of career opportunities including becoming a Laboratory Researcher, forensic scientist, or an autopsy specialist. A Laboratory Researcher could indeed lead to a genetics counselor.
The curriculum at Carlow for Biology is a four year program that begins with a three semester series of Foundation and Experimental courses that cover the biological sciences. Three of these courses plus Chemistry 1 and Chemistry 2 are required. Other course requirements include Junior Seminar, Senior Experience, and five advanced Biology Electives among the three concentration areas. The concentration I would take that most likely focuses on Genetic Counseling is Human Biology. The total amount of credits I would need to receive in order to earn my Bachelors Degree amounts to 120.
University of Pittsburgh
The University of Pittsburgh is located on Fifth Avenure in Pittsburgh. To be accepted into Pitt, it is required for high school students to take honors and AP classes, including 4 years of science, math, and English. Also, it is suggested that once takes the SAT or ACT more than once, retaking a class with a grade below C, and a challenging Senior year.
The University of Pittsburgh is a unique college due to the fact that they have their own program just for a Master of Science in Genetic Counseling. It is a two year program! The schedule is set up so that coursework is completed in the first year and clinical rotations take place in the second year. The Genetic Counseling Program is fully accredited. Requirements in order to complete this program include:
-38 credits including a minimum of 30 credits of coursework
-Coursework in human genetics and genomics
-Coursework in counseling, psychosocial development, and grief
-Genetic Counseling Internship
-Coursework in biostatistics and public health
(Pitt website; MS in Genetic Counseling)
Arcadia University is located in Glenside, Pennsylvania which is North of Philadelphia. Arcadia is unique in terms of selection and admission to college. Besides transcripts, SAT scores, and letters of recommendation being submitted, students are selected based on educational preparation, potential, and motivation. This University does not just focus on grades and SAT scores. They also pay attention to extracurricular activities and students who have gone above and beyond.
Just like Pitt, Arcadia University offers a Master of Science in Genetic Counseling program. This program has its own house located across from Arcadia’s main campus. Degree requirements include:
-minimum of 77 credits including coursework practica, clinical internships, and thesis
-Completion of four clinical internships at approved sites with participation in at least 50 supervised cases
-research paper during the second year
-overall minimum GPA of 3.0 throughout the program
-no grades below a “C”
(Arcadia University homepage; Genetic Counseling)
During the first year, 40 credits are required with courses such as genetics, psychopathology, and counseling. The second year of the program requires 37 credits plus up to 3 elective courses. These courses include internships, genetics, and counseling.
Pitt and Arcadia’s programs are graduate programs. Therefore, I have to complete college as an undergraduate first with high test scores and a degree in biology, chemistry, or psychology.
Have a great day everyone!