Frequently Asked Questions


Program Description

What is the structure of the program?

Our students complete the first two years of medical school, perform their thesis research, and then complete their third and fourth years of medical school.

How many students are currently in the program?

We have 38 students currently in the program with around 6 matriculating each year. See Current Student Profiles for a list of students, current / past PhD mentors, and research interests.

Can I really apply to do my PhD in a non-traditional area?

YES! While our students frequently seek graduate study in the classic biomedical disciplines, we welcome students with interests and backgrounds in engineering, policy, chemistry, computer science, and other areas. The large number of graduate programs, especially at Rutgers, gives students many options for the PhD. Students interested in pursuing a degree in a non-biomedical sciences program should contact the program director for specific instructions on any additional application materials that may be required for these programs. As an example, the Anthropology Department at Rutgers will accept applications for MD-PhD studies.

In which Princeton University labs can I do research?

Investigators listed under faculty and associated faculty in the Department of Molecular Biology participate in our MD/PhD program.


Application and Interview Process

How many students are interviewed each year?

We usually interview around 36 students.

How do admissions work?

To be accepted into the program, admissions committees for both the MD/PhD and MD programadmission committees must accept the applicant .

What are the interview days typically like?

For each of the four formal interview days, applicants arrive the night before and stay at hotel in downtown New Brunswick. They take a tour of the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital and affiliated facilities in New Brunswick and later go out to dinner with current MD/PhD students and faculty.

The next day is comprised of three 45-minute MD/PhD interviews, orientation for the medical school, the MD interview, and finally orientation for the MD/PhD program. The day starts at 8:00 am and finishes around 3:30 pm.

We will announce interview dates for the 2013 MD/PhD application cycle on the website in August.

Do I need to apply to all three participating schools?

No. You need only apply to RWJMS via AMCAS and indicate your interest in the MD/PhD program.

Can I apply for the MD/PhD program after I have matriculated at RWJMS?

Yes, we allow students to apply after matriculation as a medical student. Applicants will complete the MD/PhD Motivation and Significant Research Experience sections of the AMCAS application and submit these components directly to the RWJMS program. In addition, letters of recommendation can be sent directly to the MD/PhD program. Contact the director, Dr. Jim Millonig, for specific instructions on submission of these items.

Can I apply to the MD/PhD program as a PhD student?

Since the medical school curriculum is specific, this track typically does not work . However, if you have questions. feel free to email the MD/PhD director.

Do I need to take the GRE or MCAT?

All students are required to take the MCAT as part of the medical school admissions process. Students who participate in RWJMS programs that waive the MCAT requirement (e.g. BA/MD) are still required to take the MCAT to apply to the MD/PhD program.

The GRE is not required for applicants planning to pursue a PhD in the biomedical sciences. Please note, however, that non-biomedical sciences applicants MAY be required to take the GRE and should contact the appropriate program director.

Do you accept out of state applications?

We recognize the importance of geographic and scientific diversity. Out-of-state applicants are encouraged to apply.

Program Outcomes

What is the average time for completing the PhD degree?

3.5 years

How many manuscripts do your students typically publish?

Our current M3 and M4 students have published on average ~3 papers each. See xxx for list.

Do your students apply for pre-doctoral grants?

Yes. Although not required ~50% of our current students have received fellowships (federal, state, private).

Where do past MD/PhDs match for residencies?

Our students do very well in the match. See our 2012 and 2013 match results if you are interested.

What is unique about your program?

The RWJMS/Rutgers/Princeton MD/PhD program is a collaboration between 3 strong institutions that each bring unique resources to the program while building upon historic and recent collaborations between the institutions. The 3 schools offer a wide range of options for the PhD and a vibrant, interdisciplinary, and interactive environment. Additionally, physician scientist training is a major focus at RWJMS, and thus students in the MD phases also interact with colleagues with strong research interests.

© 2013