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Cornell's Combined DVM-PhD Degree Program accepts a limited number of highly motivated and academically exceptional students each year. The program encourages applications from a diverse range of candidates, including:

  • Students with an established interest in veterinary medicine and a concurrent career focus on discovery science and academia
  • Students with an established interest in biology and a career focus in discovery science and academia, but who have more recently recognized the intellectual benefits provided by an education in veterinary medicine

Application Process

Application to the Combined DVM-PhD Program can be accessed through the DVM Admissions web site. When setting up your Cornell Tracking Page, you need to indicate that you are applying to the Combined DVM-PhD Program. This will provide you access to a section requesting information related to your research experience.

The deadline for Application is September, 15th (Note: VMCAS Application Deadline Extension September 29, 2017)


Applications to the Cornell Combined DVM-PhD Degree Program are reviewed by two separate admissions committees. The DVM Admissions Committee reviews the applicants to determine admissibility to the DVM Program. The Combined Degree Oversight Committee reviews applications for admissibility to the PhD program. Both committees must agree to support the student before the offer of acceptance is made.

The Combined DVM-PhD Admissions Committee is looking for students who have:

  • a dedication to both research and veterinary medicine
  • a commitment to academic excellence and intellectual curiosity
  • the ability to benefit from the special opportunities of a combined program

Specific Admissions Information for Cornell Combined DVM/PhD Degree Program Candidates

The following guidelines are to help you consider whether you might be competitive for admission to the Cornell Combined DVM/PhD Degree program. However, we encourage you to contact Arla Hourigan ( or Dr. Helene Marquis ( to discuss your particular circumstances if you are interested in applying for the program. Deadline for receipt of all information is September 15th, (Note: VMCAS Application Deadline Extension September 29, 2017) and all application materials must be complete at this time. Please check with your recommenders to be sure that letters are submitted on time, as we cannot guarantee that letters received after the deadline will be fully considered with the other materials.

Because of the combined application processes involved (to both the Cornell graduate school and the DVM Curriculum), Combined DVM-PhD Degree applicants must complete the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) and submit test results by September 15th. MCAT (Medical College Admission Test) results can be submitted with the application if available, but do not replace the GRE results which are required for the graduate school admission.

GRE scores are used as part of the assessment of candidates, and generally would need to meet at least the following levels to be competitive: a combined GRE score of 310 for verbal and quantitative sections of the test with a minimum 50th percentile rank for each section required.

Applicants for the Cornell DVM-PhD Degree Program will not be automatically evaluated for admission into a Cornell PhD degree program if they are not accepted into the Combined DVM-PhD Degree Program. Any applicant who is interested in having their application evaluated for admission into a PhD degree program must follow the application procedures specific to the Biological and Biomedical Sciences PhD Program.

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