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HTHCP-CERT - Health Careers Preparation


Official Name of Program

Health Careers Preparation

Plan Code


Department(s) Sponsoring Program



Degree Designation

CERTGE30 - Certificate



NYSED Program Code

41251 - HTHCP-CERT

CIP Code


The Health Careers Preparation Post-Baccalaureate Certificate Program (HealthBridge) is aimed primarily at bachelor degree holders who decided to pursue a career in the health professions (medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, optometry, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, or veterinary medicine) while still undergraduates, but did not complete all of the required prerequisites. For some, this is because they have long had a dream of work in the health professions, but chose to defer it during their undergraduate work only to come back to it later in their lives. For others, they have made the decision to pursue a career in the health professions late in their undergraduate study, perhaps as seniors, leaving them insufficient time to complete their coursework. The program will also serve “career-changers,” that is, bachelor degree holders who did not pursue preparation for the health professions as undergraduates, but make the decision subsequent to graduation. 

While this program will accept students from all backgrounds, we believe it is an especially important option for students who are underrepresented in the health professions, and may therefore be more likely to commit to a career in the health professions relatively late in their academic careers.

Students pursuing the Health Careers Preparation Post-Baccalaureate Certificate must choose one of seven tracks, based on their eventual career goal: 

  • Bridge to Medicine

  • Bridge to Physician Assistant

  • Bridge to Physical Therapy

  • Bridge to Dental

  • Bridge to Pharmacy

  • Bridge to Optometry

  • Bridge to Veterinary Medicine

Regardless of track, the Health Careers Preparation certificate is divided into two phases, the Foundational phase and the In Depth phase. It is not necessary to complete the Foundational phase in order to apply for admission to the In Depth phase. Students admitted to the Foundational phase must apply for admission to the In Depth phase once they meet those requirements. The certificate is awarded following successful completion of the In Depth phase.