Category Archives: Healthcare

Career Spotlight: Genetic Counselor

Many students express a desire to combine an interest in science with a desire to use interpersonal skills to help others.  Genetic counseling is one such field.  As the name implies, a genetic counselor helps a client by “mapping genetic patterns within the family” (OOQ Online, 2011).  This information can be used in prenatal counseling, as well as helping clients understand genetic conditions from which they are suffering.

According to an article in the Occupational Outlook Quarterly,

Genetic counselors must have a master’s degree in genetic counseling from a program accredited by American Board of Genetic Counseling. There are currently 30 of these master’s programs nationwide, and admission to them usually requires completion of significant undergraduate coursework in biological science. The programs combine scientific aspects of genetics with counseling study and take about 2 years to finish. In addition, most employers require certification, and some states require licensure.

A list of accredited programs can be found here.

The following articles can provide you with additional information on the profession:

Public Health

The above poster was utilized during World War II to education British citizens on healthy eating during times of food rationing, according to  This idea of educating the public on health issues leads me to today’s topic.  What is the field of public health exactly?  Well, recently I gathered my convictions and typed “What is Public Health?” into my Google search bar.  Guess what?  There is an actual website called and it is really neat!  You can watch an interactive presentation all about public health right on the homepage.  Click on the link and watch for yourself.  Here are a few details about the definition of Public Health from the website:

Public Health is the science of protecting and improving the health of communities through education, promotion of healthy lifestyles, and research for disease and injury prevention. Public health professionals analyze the effect on health of genetics, personal choice and the environment in order to develop programs that protect the health of your family and community.

Overall, public health is concerned with protecting the health of entire populations. These populations can be as small as a local neighborhood, or as big as an entire country.

Public health professionals try to prevent problems from happening or re-occurring throughimplementing educational programs, developing policies, administering services, regulating health systems and some health professions, and conducting research, in contrast to clinical professionals, such as doctors and nurses, who focus primarily on treating individuals after they become sick or injured. It is also a field that is concerned with limiting health disparities and a large part of public health is the fight for health care equity, quality, and accessibility.

The field of public health is highly varied and encompasses many academic disciplines. However, public health is mainly composed of the following core areas:

If this field sounds interesting to you, might want to explore Baylor’s Community Health major.  This link will take you to the department’s homepage and this link will take you to the Meet the Majors podcast with Dr. Beth Lanning, Director of the program.  Also, many graduate programs focus on public health issues, too.  You can explore more about the profession at, which is the website for the American Public Health Assocation, a public health professional organization.  This website can keep you up to date on the latest trends and focus areas for the profession.
“Public Health regards the community as its patient”.  This quote from the video on  is my takeaway for the day.  I hope this information was helpful and perhaps clarified a bit what is involved in this fascinating health-related field.  Please let us know if you have further questions or would like more information.  Thanks for stopping by!

MCAT Review

Are you planning to take the MCAT to pursue your goal of attending medical school?  AED, a national health pre-professional honor society,  is sponsoring a review course opportunity that you might want to find out more about.  This course is available to all pre-med students and will include the following:






Business Majors for Students Who Like to Help

One of the more challenging aspects of selecting a major and career goal is when a student believes that their primary interests are in direct opposition to one another.  Rather than a challenge, consider such a scenario as an opportunity to get creative.

Many students come to us who are attracted to the job opportunities available with a business major, yet they question if the resulting careers will allow them to help and serve other people.  They often emphasize that they want to make a difference in the world.  Here are a few options to ponder:

  • Business for Secondary Education– This major allows students to gain a broad business background, as well as the opportunity to pursue a teacher certification upon graduation.  You can share your business savvy with future generations, providing students with necessary skills for the workforce, and possibly even inspiring them to pursue a career in business.
  • Human Resource Management– This major offers training in conflict resolution, staffing, and other subjects that prepare you for working with the employees of an organization.
  • Marketing- Nonprofit and Development Track– Students can use this version of the marketing major to launch a career with agencies that have helping as their mission.
  • Financial Planning– Assisting individuals with decisions regarding their finances is a role with long-term impact.
  • Prehealth students might find the Bachelor of Science in Economics and Baylor Business Fellows programs to accommodate their prehealth courses a bit more easily than the traditional Bachelor of Business Administration.
  • A business major is also strong preparation for a career in healthcare administration.
  • Depending on how you choose to apply your business knowledge in the workforce, any business major can lead to a rewarding career that allows you to contribute to society in meaningful ways.

For more information, follow the hyperlinks above, or contact Career Counseling to begin your journey in combining your unique interests.

On-Campus Resource: Prehealth Studies Office


With approximately 1/3 of Baylor freshmen entering as “pre-med” each year, it makes sense that our campus would want to provide information and guidance to help these students be successful.  Going beyond pre-medicine, the Prehealth Studies Office also serves students on the following pre-professional tracks:

  • Predentistry
  • Preoccupational Therapy
  • Preoptometry
  • Prepharmacy
  • Prephysician Assistant
  • Prephysical Therapy
  • Preveterinary Medicine

Keep in mind that these tracks are not academic majors.  Rather, they are tracks that a student can elect to pursue, in preparation for applying to professional schools.  The application process is complex, which is why students should take advantage of the wisdom of the advisors in the Prehealth Studies Office.

If you are on one of these tracks, or even considering it, visit the Prehealth Studies website or meet with an advisor one-on-one to discuss how a prehealth track could fit into your academic plan.

Health Science Studies Major


We frequently receive questions about the Health Science Studies major in Baylor’s School of Education.  It should come as no surprise, since approximately one-third of Baylor freshmen indicate that they are on a pre-med track.  If you are interested in a career in healthcare, pre-med or otherwise, please take a few moments to learn some basics about this popular major.

The Health Science Studies major is offered on a Bachelor of Science in Education degree plan.  Be aware that this does not automatically mean that you will be prepared for teacher certification with this program, though some students choose to include teacher education classes in their courses of study.  Students in this major have a choice of four options:

  • Pre-Physical Therapy Option
  • Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Option
  • Secondary General Science Education Option
  • Health Professions Option

Obviously, the first two options are intended for students who plan on applying to a professional school in physical therapy, medicine, or dentistry.  The programs include the prerequisites needed for admission to the professional schools.  Students in these two options should note the following requirement, taken directly from the Baylor University Undergraduate Catalog (2011-2012):

“Students in Health Science Studies (HSS) Premedical/Predental and Pre-Physical Therapy majors will be required to have a 3.0 or beter cumulative GPA after 60 hours are completed (with at least 15 hours at Baylor). These 60 hours will include but not be limited to BIO 1305-1105, BIO 1306-1106, CHE 1301, 1302, 1316, HP 1420, and required math coursework. If a student does not have the 3.0 GPA after completing the required 60 hours, the student will be placed on probationary status for one term.  At the end of the one probationary ter, (two summer sessions count as one term) if the GPA is still not at a 3.0 and/or the above coursework is not completed, the student will not be allowed to continue in this major. Students may appeal the GPA requirement only in very unusual circumstances. Appeals must be made in writing to the director of the HSS program within 15 days of the end of any semester after 60 hours when a student’s GPA falls below 3.0.”

Students in the latter two options must maintain a 2.6 GPA or higher, meaning that some students who are not able to continue in the Pre-Physical Therapy or Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Options are able to change to the Secondary General Science Education Option or Health Professions Option as a back-up plan.

The Secondary General Science Education Option has Health Science Studies students to take courses that would make them eligible to apply for teacher certification, while the Health Professions Option gives students the choice of a minor in Business Administration or Community Health.

Many students find appealing the professional field experience or internship that is built into this major.  Also, students are quick to notice that the Health Science Studies major does not require students to take a foreign language, a significant difference from a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree plan.

We hope this summary whets your appetite for information on the Health Science Studies major.  Stay tuned, as we plan to add an interview with Dr. Barbalee Symm about this major to our Meet the Majors podcast series soon!

Pre-Health Organizaitons

Are you considering a pre-health program in addition to your major? Do you have dreams of working in the medical field? Then, you might be interested in joining a pre-health student organization. We at Career Counseling have noticed that a lot of these groups are having interest sessions this week, so we wanted to get the info out to you ASAP. Maybe you can stop by one or a few of these sessions to see what these groups are all about. In general, joining a pre-professional organization will give you the opportunity to get to know other students who share your similar interest, may provide some study tips for those exams required before applying to professional schools, and they also might feature sessions with some current professionals in that field to talk to you about what hey do and how they got there. Remember hearing about the importance of job shadowing and volunteer work during your time in college? These groups may provide helpful opportunities to network and find positions that are available for you to gain this much needed experience.

Dr. Sanker, the Director of the Pre-Health office, sent a great email this week talking about the value of getting involved in a prehealth organization.  I’ve linked the attachment he sent as part of this post, so please check out these different opportunities.

Pre-Health Memo

In addition to these opportunities, here is letter from the APPS president, Annie Lee:

APPS Interest Meeting 9/6 at 7PM!!!

Dear prospective Association of Pre-Pharmacy member,

Hello, my name is Annie Lee, a president of Association of Pre-Pharmacy Students (APPS). I want to invite you to our first interest meeting on Tuesday 9/6 at 7pm in BSB E206.
APPS is a Pre-Pharmacy organization designed for undergraduate students with the willingness and goal of reaching Pharmacy school after attending Baylor University.
The purpose of APPS is to improve the understanding and the likelihood of entering into a School of Pharmacy once you have completed your required courses and/or graduated. This is a great opportunity for students with common interests to congregate and enhance their college experience and knowledge on everything Pharmacy.We will be discussing about APPS requirements and different areas in pharmacy career to broaden your prospective of pharmacy profession. The membership fee is $20 and membership application will be available at the meeting.
Please feel free to email me if you have any questions!
Annie Lee
Biology, Pre-Pharmacy
Association of Pre-Pharm Students President
AFC Intervarsity Leadership Team


Another pre-health group meeting:

Baylor Pre-Veterinary Society Meeting

Tonight, August 31st at 5:30 in BSB D114

We hope your week is going well and let us know if you have questions about other student organizations you are interested in!