Kristina Valenti

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A Master of Medical Science Changed Everything for Kristina Valentine

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Kristina Valentine feels confident about her future, thanks to UVM’s Medical Science Degree Program.

The first-year UVM Larner College of Medicine student, who wants to pursue a career in family medicine, has almost completed a full year of medical school.

“It’s been better than I expected and more manageable than I thought,” says Valentine, who earned her undergraduate degree from McGill University. “I’ve been very proud of how far I’ve come academically.”

UVM’s Master of Medical Science Degree

Valentine enrolled in UVM’s Medical Science Degree Program after wasn’t accepted to medical school when she first applied three years ago. The 12-month degree program’s curriculum includes UVM Larner College of Medicine courses in human anatomy, biochemistry, cell biology, human physiology, pharmacology, and biostatistics.

The Medical Science Degree program is for students who have earned a bachelor’s degree and have completed introductory science courses. It’s also for students who want medical school faculty committed to their success and personalized advising and support.

“The program gave me a lot of time to think about how to articulate why I want to work in medicine,” says Valentine, who lives in Burlington.

Her first year of medical school has included anatomy, neurobiology, nutrition, and physiology.  This summer, she will intern for the Physicians for National Health Program, an organization advocating a universal, comprehensive single-payer national health program. Valentine will learn more about single payer efforts in Vermont and New Hampshire and also look at what’s happening at places like the VA hospital and local prisons.

She has also been awarded an Albert Schweitzer Fellowship and will be part of an effort to expand mobile syringe services in communities such as St. Albans, Enosburg and Swanton in northwestern Vermont.

Before enrolling in the Medical Science Degree program, Valentine completed UVM’s Public Health Graduate Certificate Program and worked as a project manager for MHISSION Translational Systems at UVM. MHISSION serves the veteran population, mainly focusing on veteran jail diversion, in addition to other criminal justice-related populations.

Valentine was born at UVM Medical Center and grew up on Cape Cod. She majored in psychology and minored in social studies of medicine and English at McGill, where she graduated in 2013.

As she wraps up her first year of medical school, she credits the Medical Science Degree program with her achievements.

“The Medical Science Degree program proved to me that I can do this,” she says. “I didn’t do so hot as an undergraduate. My grades were OK. But the fact that I’ve been able to do everything here and succeed has been really nice.”

Learn more about UVM’s Medical Science Degree Program