Center for Health Professions

So you are thinking about pursuing a professional career: dentistry, medicine, pharmacy, nursing, physical therapy, law, etc. People often choose these programs because they want to make a difference and meet essential needs in others’ lives. These careers also often provide the flexibility and financial stability many students and their families are looking for. At Walla Walla University we care about you having not only a successful career but a meaningful career as well and believe we are uniquely positioned to help you reach your professional goals.



What is a pre-professional program?

Pre-professional programs are tracks in undergraduate programs that prepare you for a professional degree after your bachelor's. You don’t earn the professional degree at WWU, but you take the college-level classes you’ll need to do well on entrance exams, meet application requirements for pre-requisites, and succeed in professional programs.

How is doing a pre-professional different from just getting a degree?

In addition to earning a degree at WWU, you’re paired with an advisor who knows the classes you’ll need to take and the skills you’ll need to gain to pass your professional program entrance exam. 虽然大多数专业课程都要求你有学士学位才能进入这个课程, not all do. It’s a good idea to get a bachelor’s though even if it’s not a requirement so you can have more flexibility later in your career. 


Not sure which one is right for you yet?
Don’t worry! You don't have to make this decision now.

You can talk with our professional advisors and plan your first year carefully to keep your options open while you are still learning what fits you best.

Be confident in your career potential.

The Student Development Center provides services that are uniquely geared to set you up for a strong start as a working professional. 

Learn how the Student Development Center will help you thrive >

Nature of Work: 牙医诊断、预防和治疗牙齿和口腔组织的问题. In aesthetic dentistry, they remove decay and fill cavities, examine X-rays, place protective plastic sealants on children's teeth, straighten, whiten, and repair fractured teeth. 他们还对牙龈和支撑骨骼进行矫正手术,以治疗牙龈疾病. Dentists extract teeth, place dental implants, make molds, and take measurements for dentures to replace missing teeth. In addition, they provide instruction in diet, brushing, flossing, and the use of fluorides, and in other areas of dental care. 他们还负责麻醉和开抗生素和其他药物的处方. 牙医可以做一般的手术,也可以专攻以下任何一个领域:牙髓学, implantology, oral surgery, orthodontics, pathology, pedodontics, periodontics, or prosthodontics.

Professional Training: To qualify for licensing, 候选人必须毕业于认可的牙科学校并通过国家委员会考试. 有执照的专业人员可能会继续接受高级培训,以便教书或专攻.

Contact Information:

Advisors:Kyle Craig, Jeremy Wiggins
Phone: (509) 527-2482, (509) 527-2762, (509) 527-2483

Dentistry Advisement Guidebook

Nature of Work: 牙科保健员作为牙科保健小组的一员,提供临床和教育援助. 牙科保健员在牙医办公室直接与病人一起工作,或者在工业中单独工作, schools, or public health agencies. In the office, a dental hygienist's duties include prophylaxis and X-ray work, however in a few states such as Washington, expanded duties include the filling of minor cavities. Dental hygienists examine patients' teeth and gums, recording the presence of disease or abnormalities. They remove stain and plaque from teeth, apply caries-preventive agents such as fluorides, pit and fissure sealants; take and develop dental X-rays, place temporary fillings and periodontal dressings, remove sutures, and polish and re-contour amalgam restoration. Dental hygienists also help patients develop and maintain good oral health.

Professional Training: Requirements for licensing vary from state to state. Following the completion of training, state board examinations are required. Certification may have reciprocity between states. After the Associate of Science degree, 学生通常转学到可以提供额外培训的项目.  


Advisor: Curtis Kuhlman
Phone: (509) 527-2324

Dental Hygiene  Advisement Guidebook


Nature of Work: The legal system affects nearly every aspect of our society, from buying a home to crossing the street. 律师是这一重要体系的支柱,以多种方式将其与社会联系起来.

Professional Training: The required college and law school education usually takes 7 years of full-time study after high school: 4 years of undergraduate study, followed by 3 years of law school. Law school applicants must have a bachelor’s degree to qualify for admission.

Preparation: Although there is no recommended “prelaw” major, prospective lawyers should develop proficiency in writing and speaking, reading, researching, analyzing, 以及逻辑思维——这些都是在法学院和律师行业取得成功所必需的技能. Regardless of major, a multidisciplinary background is recommended. Courses in English, foreign languages, public speaking, government, philosophy, history, economics, mathematics, and computer science, among others, are useful. Acceptance by most law schools depends on the applicant’s ability to demonstrate an aptitude for the study of law, usually through good grades, the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), 以及申请人的本科学历和之前的工作经验.

Contact Information:

Advisors: Timothy Golden

Phone: (509) 527-2217

Law Advisement Guidebook

General Areas of Service: 放射技师最熟悉的工作是用x光片诊断骨折. However, medical uses of radiation expand far beyond this. 辐射不仅用于产生人体内部的图像,而且还用于治疗癌症. Additionally, the use of imaging techniques that do not involve X-rays, such as ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging, is growing rapidly. 放射技师可以作为放射技师专门从事医学放射摄影, nuclear medicine technologists, or radiation technologists treating cancer and other diseases. Most radiological technologists work in hospitals. Others may work in medical school systems as instructors or chief technologists. Radiological technology is concerned with the use of X-rays, radioactive substances, and other forms of radiant energy in the treatment and diagnosis of disease.

Professional Training: Advanced training is needed if one wants to prepare for administration, clinical practice, education, or health physics. Formal training is offered in radiography, radiation therapy, and diagnostic medical sonography (ultrasound). Programs range in length from one to four years and lead to a certificate, associate degree, or bachelor's degree. Two-year programs are the most prevalent.

Contact Information:

Advisors: Curtis Kuhlman

Phone: (509) 527-2324

Medical Radiography Advisement Guidebook


Nature of Work: Physicians examine patients; obtain medical histories; and order, perform, and interpret diagnostic tests. They also diagnose illnesses and prescribe and administer treatment for people suffering from injury or disease, and counsel patients on diet, hygiene, and preventive health care. 私人诊所的医生也可能处理或监督与他们办公室有关的业务方面. Most general practitioners are self-employed, working with a group. However, numerous doctors are employed by other practitioners or by state, local, or federal government; or private risk management insurance corporations.

Professional Training: Doctors must acquire an M.D. degree, complete a residency, and obtain a license to practice. Formal education and training are among the longest of any occupation, but earnings are among the highest.

Contact Information:

Advisors: Joseph Brannaka,David Lindsey, Janice McKenzie, Curtis Kuhlman , Jeremy Wiggins

Medicine Advisement Guidebook

Nature of Work: Occupational therapists work with people who have difficulty coping with psychological or physiological dysfunction. Specifically, occupational therapists help individuals with mentally, physically, developmentally, or emotionally disabling conditions to develop, recover, and maintain daily-living and work skills. 它们不仅帮助患者改善基本的运动功能和推理能力, they also help them compensate for permanent loss of function. They work to help patients lead independent, productive, and satisfying lives through the increase of strength, dexterity, and the ability to discern patterns. An occupational therapist may practice in general hospitals, rehabilitation centers, pediatric or psychiatric hospitals, crippled children's camps and schools, geriatric homes, sheltered workshops, home-care, and community-centered programs. 治疗师主要关心的是发展或重新发展自我照顾、工作和休闲技能. Therapy involves retraining patients to overcome their disabilities through the activities of daily living and working.

Professional Training: A degree in occupational therapy and successfully passing the national certification examination are required for work in the profession. 研究生学位通常是教学、研究或专业项目所必需的. 

Contact Information:

Advisors: Mike Hellie

Phone: (509) 527-2886

Occupational Therapy Advisement Guidebook

Nature of Work: Optometrists examine people's eyes to diagnose vision problems and eye diseases. They treat vision problems and, in most states, they also treat some eye diseases such as conjunctivitis or corneal infections. 验光师使用仪器和观察来检查眼睛健康和测试患者的视力, depth and color perceptions, and their ability to focus and coordinate their eyes. They analyze test results and develop a treatment plan. Optometrists prescribe eyeglasses, contact lenses, vision therapy, and low vision aids (for visually impaired patients). All optometrists provide general eye and vision care. Some do this through general practice, and others through more specialized practice such as contact lenses, geriatrics, low vision services, pediatrics, sports vision, and vision therapy. 其他视光师可以选择进入视光教育,从事科学研究.

Professional Training: Doctors of Optometry must successfully complete a four-year accredited degree program at one of the schools of optometry. 大多数被验光学校或学院录取的学生已经完成了他们的本科学位, 尽管最低入学要求通常只有两年的本科课程. Each institution has its own undergraduate prerequisites, 因此,申请人应该联系他们选择的学校或学院了解具体要求. 

Contact Information:

Advisors: Tom Ekkens
Phone: (509) 527-2476
Optometry Advisement Guidebook

Nature of Work: Orthotists and Prosthetists, also called O&P专业人员,可能在矫形和假肢工作,或者他们可能会选择专门的一个. Orthotists are specifically trained to work with medical supportive devices, such as braces and inserts. Prosthetists are specifically trained to work with prostheses, such as artificial limbs and other body parts. An O&P professional may work in small, private offices, hospitals, federal government, and medical equipment and supplies manufacturing companies.

Professional Training: Orthotists and prosthetists need at least a master’s degree in orthotics and a one year residency before they can be certified.

Contact Information:

Advisors:Tom Ekkens
Phone: (509) 527-2476

Orthotics and Prosthetics Advisement Guidebook

General Areas of Service: 药剂师混合和分配处方药物,并建议医生选择, dosages, interactions, and side effects of medication. They council patients about drug therapy programs, try to ensure that patients understand the instructions on their prescription, and order and maintain supplies of drugs and chemicals. 这份工作需要良好的数字和语言能力以及对细节的关注. Most pharmacists work in pharmacies. 其他人受雇于医院、政府或生产药品的公司.


Professional Training: 作为一名药剂师执业需要药学博士学位并通过董事会考试. Pharmacy schools usually require students to have a minimum of three years of undergraduate work before entering. Upon entering a pharmacy school, a student studies four years to complete the Doctor of Pharmacy degree. 学生应该向他们选择的药学院咨询确切的课程要求. The following subjects are usually part of the college level courses required before entrance into a pharmacy school: mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics, and English.



Contact Information:

Advisors: Melvin Roberts

Phone: (509) 527-2040

Pharmacy Advisement Guidebook

General Areas of Service: Physical therapists find employment in hospitals, public and private health agencies, physicians' offices, special schools, research organizations, sports programs, rehabilitation centers, and private practice. Physical therapists are concerned with treating disease, injury and disability, using activities and devices to increase or restore their patients’ strength, flexibility, endurance, coordination and balance, reduce pain and discomfort, 让病人在身体和情感上做好准备,恢复日常生活活动. 他们的病人包括事故受害者和患有多发性硬化症等疾病的残疾人, cerebral palsy, nerve injuries, burns, amputations, head injuries, fractures, low back pain, arthritis, and heart disease.

Professional Training: Physical therapists must be licensed by the state. By 2020, 物理治疗由物理治疗医生(DPT)提供。. Because of this change, 那些还没有为学生准备DPT的临床项目正在这样做. Entry into a clinical physical therapy program requires high grade point averages on pre-requisite coursework along with well-rounded extracurricular activities. Both Loma Linda University and Andrews University have DPT training programs. 这两所学校都接受三年大学预科课程后的申请者. (A bachelor’s degree is awarded to those students who do not have a bachelor’s degree after the first year of clinical physical therapy study.)

Contact Information:

Advisor: Mike Hellie
Phone:  (509) 527-2886

Physical Therapy Advisement Guidebook
Physical Therapy Assistant Advisement Guidebook

General Areas of Service: 物理治疗助理在物理治疗师的直接监督下工作. 他们受雇于医院、疗养院、康复中心和医疗办公室. Most of their work includes working to rehabilitate people with muscle, nerve, joint, and bone diseases or injuries. 物理治疗助理训练病人做有助于他们日常生活的运动和活动. They also observe, report, and assist in treatment programs that utilize heat, sound, water, electrical, and infrared techniques. In addition, they help patients learn to use artificial limbs, braces, crutches, walkers, and wheelchairs.

Professional Training: An associate's degree from an accredited physical therapy program is required as well as supervised clinical experience. Many states require physical therapist assistants to be licensed by the state. 洛马林达大学是唯一一所提供这种培训计划的教会学校.

Contact Information:

Advisors: Mike Hellie
Phone: (509) 527-2041

Physical Therapy Advisement Guidebook
Physical Therapy Assistant Advisement Guidebook

General Areas of Service: The Physician Assistant (PA) is an important member of the healthcare team who acts interdependently with a supervising physician to provide diagnostic and therapeutic care in a variety of medical settings. PA programs prepare students to take comprehensive medical histories, complete physical examinations, order and interpret diagnostic tests, diagnose illnesses, create treatment plans, aid in surgery, and perform minor procedures. 医师助理通常比医生参与更多的实际病人护理.

Educational Experience: 成功完成医师助理课程将为学生提供硕士学位. There is a wide variety in the prerequisite course work for PA programs, so students should check with the school(s) to which they wish to apply to as early as possible to ensure completion of appropriate courses. Physician assistant programs usually require a bachelor’s degree, but application may be submitted completion of this undergraduate degree. Recommended undergraduate majors include biology, biochemistry, health science, or another biomedical field. Most PA programs also require clinical experience of at least 2000 hours of hands-on patient care (actual number of hours varies by program).  

Contact Information:

Advisors: Kyle Craig
Phone: (509) 527-2762

Physician Assistant Advisement Guidebook

Nature of Work: Veterinary medicine is a health profession dedicated to the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of animal diseases and injuries. 兽医运用科学知识和决策过程来增强健康, welfare, and productivity of animals. They contribute to human as well as animal health by engaging in research, food safety inspection, education, regulatory medicine, and public health. 随着动物和人口的增长,这一综合性卫生专业变得越来越重要. Most veterinarians in the United States and Canada work in private practices. Specialties within veterinary medicine include research, education, laboratory animal medicine, zoo animal medicine, equine sports medicine, wildlife animal medicine, animal-assisted activities, marine biology, and aquatic animal medicine.

Professional Training: Prospective veterinarians must graduate from a four-year program at an accredited college of veterinary medicine with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M or V.M.D) degree and obtain a license to practice. The United States and Canada have 33 colleges of veterinary medicine.

Contact Information:

Advisors: James Nestler
Phone: (509) 527-2551

Veterinary Science Advisement Guidebook

Why do a pre-professional program at WWU?

Learn to think like a scientist.
At WWU you’ll learn how to think like a scientist--a skill which will give you an advantage when you are applying and completing a pre-professional program. This most directly comes through taking science classes.

Choose from a variety of majors.
你可以是一名预科专业的学生,仍然可以从澳门真人官网赌场100多个学习领域中进行选择. Choosing a major is about understanding your interests and how efficiently you want to complete your core pre-professional requirements. Many majors are well-suited for pre-professional study and our advisors can help you choose one that aligns with your interests and goals.

Receive quality advising.
Every student at WWU is paired with an academic advisor who is trained to be knowledgeable about competencies you need to be successful to apply to pre-professional schools. If you’re uncertain which professional program you’d like to go into, advisors can help you plan your first year carefully to meet a broad range of requirements as you determine which program is the best fit. And for first-generation college students, 澳门真人官网赌场的建议意味着从以前上过大学的人那里获得专业的帮助. 

Study in action.
When you attend WWU you’ll gain access to valuable hands-on research experience with faculty who are active researchers. This experience provides a solid background for professional programs. You’ll learn not just how to do research, but also how to understand research. 学生可以与教师合作,也可以在课堂上进行自己的研究.

Anticipate for the future.
Our pre-professional curriculum at WWU is built on current research about what is needed to be successful as a professional in a variety of fields, anticipating what will be needed in the future as well.