Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program

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Program FAQ

Find out more about the Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program financial support, programs and more.

Q: How long does it take to complete the Program (both degrees)?

A: Generally, it takes students 7-8 years to finish the program. If you did each degree separately it would take you about 9-10 years to finish (4 years for medical school and 5-6 years for the PhD).

Q: How is the Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program structured?

A: Students complete two full years of medical school, followed by 3.5-4.5 years of Graduate School. Students receive their PhD and go on to complete the final 1.5 years of medical school.


Q: Why does the PhD portion of the MD-PhD Program take only 3.5 years instead of 5?

A: MD-PhD students receive graduate level credit for their courses they've taken during their first two years of medical school. In addition, our MD-PhD students take a special course designed specifically for the MD-PhD students called Frontiers in Biomedical Sciences.


Q: What makes your MD-PhD Program different from all of the others?

A: The Weill Cornell/Rockefeller/Sloan Kettering Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program is one of the oldest and largest programs in the country. In addition, it is the only program in the country where three institutions combine to form one MD-PhD Program. All students receive their M.D. training at the Weill Cornell Medical College. Their Ph.D. research may be conducted at the Weill Cornell Graduate School - in either Weill Medical College or the Sloan Kettering Institute - or The Rockefeller University's graduate school. All of the institutions are located across the street from one another on the Upper East Side of New York City (Manhattan - NOT Ithaca). Having access to all three institutions means the students have access to over 250 laboratories.


Q: Do you have a mentoring program for women?

A: Yes. We are one of the few programs in the country that has a fully developed mentoring program for women. FACES - Female Association for Clinicians, Educators and Scientistsstarted in 2004 and holds monthly meetings. The topics vary from career advice, including how to manage conflicting demands on ones professional and family life to investment strategies. Guest speakers are routinely brought in to meet with our students.


Q: What is the financial support package for MD-PhD students?

A: All MD-PhD students receive a stipend (currently $33,270-$37,530 depending on the year in the Program), a full tuition waiver for every year in the program, up to a $1,500 lab supplement, health and dental insurance. In addition, any student who writes and is awarded his/her own fellowship, may be eligible for a $5,000 stipend supplement (certain restrictions apply).


Q: How many underrepresented minority students are in the MD-PhD Program?

A: The Tri-Institutional MD-PhD Program has more underrepresented minority students then any other MD-PhD Program in the country. One-fifth of the MD-PhD Program, and approximately 30% of the first year class is made up of underrepresented minority programs. The NIH continually highlights our MD-PhD Program for its success at recruiting and retaining underrepresented minority students.


Q: Do you have a summer program?

A: Yes. Initiated in 1993, the Gateways to the Laboratory Program was a pioneer. It was the first summer program in the country devoted to recruiting and training underrepresented minority and disadvantaged students to successfully apply and complete a MD-PhD Program. Applications will be available on our website by December. Our deadline is February 1.

The summer program is for freshman and sophomore college students who are underrepresented minority or otherwise disadvantaged. The students must be interested in MD-PhD.