Methodist College is expanding on its mission to educate healthcare professionals and is rolling out a new Bachelor of Science in Medical and Life Sciences degree. A team of administrators and faculty designed the new baccalaureate program to provide preparatory education in the areas of Biology, Pre-Medicine, Pre-Dentistry, Pre-Pharmacy, and Pre-Physician Assistant. The college designed the program to meet the needs of employers to recruit medical providers locally to stay and practice in Central Illinois.
“We know that local students leave the Peoria area to be educated in pre-professional programs and subsequently pursue careers in communities outside of the region,” said Methodist College Dean of Arts and Sciences Dr. Eileen Setti. “Our goal is that through this program, students will be introduced to the many health career opportunities in our region, and that they will want to return to practice after they obtain their advanced degrees. We are creating a pathway to regional institutions like the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Peoria. We are ‘growing our own’ health care professionals to serve our communities right here in Central Illinois.”
Students will be able to start at Methodist College directly from high school, or be admitted with approved transfer credits from other accredited colleges and universities. Methodist College will be partnering with community colleges to develop articulation agreements that will streamline the transfer opportunities for students who choose to start their higher education studies at a community college.
The demand for more healthcare professionals is on the rise as healthcare is the largest employer in the Central Illinois region. According to the Greater Peoria Economic Developing Council
, 708 healthcare organizations operate in the region employing 29,731 individuals in Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford, Mason, and Logan counties. This is 25% above the national average of healthcare professionals working in comparably sized communities. The healthcare cluster supports 16% of all jobs in Greater Peoria.
“This new degree fits perfectly in our growing portfolio of academic programs,” added Setti. “For more than one hundred years, the college has successfully supplied the region with outstanding nursing professionals. More recently, the college has expanded degree programs to include Healthcare Management, Social Work, Medical Assistant, and Nurse Assistant. These new programs are steadily growing and provide new professionals to the healthcare and human service labor force.”
Prospective students interested in getting more information about the program can visit the college’s