Students who have completed their second year of medical school are eligible to apply to the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) as advanced training applicants (ATAs). These students are evaluated as rigorously as new applicants, including the requirement for high-level research experience, and are only accepted into the program if their achievements are equivalent to the excellence of our other MSTP students. For these students, laboratory rotations may be done after joining the program, although students with an established research project can forego rotations with the approval of the MSTP director. After completing Med 2 and taking the USMLE STEP 1, the student takes a leave-of-absence from medical school and completes the requirements for a PhD. Because we believe these students require the same rigorous training, they have the same graduate class requirements and perform graduate research equivalent to other MSTP students.

Application Process

1. Contact the Medical Scientist Training Program Office to set up a meeting with the Administrative Program Director, Ashley Bertran at 614-292-7790 or

2. After meeting, complete the following items and return them to the MSTP Office:

  • MSTP ATA application (available from the administrative program director)
  • CV
  • Statement of purpose - directed towards your selected graduate program of interest
  • Three new (or updated) letters of recommendation

Questions regarding the ATA process should be directed to the MSTP Office at 614-292-7790 or

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