A classroom scene at JWU, with multiple students listening to a professor.



Many professions — typically higher-paying ones — require advanced study beyond a bachelor’s degree. Becoming a doctor, dentist or veterinarian will require an additional 4 years of schooling; the time commitment is similar for law or pharmacy school. That may seem like a long time; fortunately, JWU offers pathway programs to select graduate programs.

Some graduate programs require specific undergraduate majors prior to entry. For some careers, your bachelor’s degree will be in a related major. If you’re interested in becoming a mental health counselor, you would probably major in psychology. Other graduate programs simply require a list of prerequisite courses and are open to any major.

JWU helps students fulfill prerequisites for specific grad programs by having “tracks” within majors to ensure students take the correct courses as they complete their undergraduate degrees. For example, if you’re planning to be a lawyer, you could choose to major in criminal justice, psychology, political science, or even liberal studies.

Pre-Professional Advising

Applying to graduate school can quickly become complicated by the demands of tracking the prerequisite courses, entrance exams, reference letters, interviews, shadowing and sometimes even work experiences required. Having a savvy academic advisor who understands the requirements of getting into grad school — and can guide you through the process — is crucial.

For that reason, we have pre-professional advisors whose own academic and professional backgrounds ensure they know which elective courses will best prepare you and what entrance exams you’ll need to take. They also provide coaching to help you stand out in a field of applicants.

An advisor talking with a student

Explore Graduate Pathways

If graduate study is on your pathway to professional success, Johnson & Wales University can provide you with a competitive edge to get there.


JWU offers competitive pathways for our Physician Assistant and Occupational Therapy Doctorate programs that provide students with access to pre-health advisors and a customized approach to determining their future career path. JWU students who meet the requirements for admission will receive automatic interviews for programs that typically receive hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of applicants.


Or you can shorten your path in a fast-track JWU program from psychology to either Clinical Mental Health Counseling or Addiction Counseling, the law articulation with the Roger Williams and UMass Law Schools or our biology to pharmacy pathway with the University of Saint Joseph. These accelerated pathways save you time and money. If you already have a bachelor’s degree and need to fulfill prerequisites for Pre-Health or Pre-Med, investigate our Postbaccalaureate Pre-Medical & Pre-Health Professions program.

Career Preparation

Pre-Law students in a classroom setting.


Law schools are looking for candidates who are passionate about law, are ethical, and can read and write effectively. Suggested majors for pre-law students are Business Administration (BSBA), Criminal Justice, Political Science, Liberal Studies, Psychology or Sustainable Food Systems.

3+3 B.S./J.D. Pathway

A student and professor looking at a microscope slide.

Pre-Health and Pre-Med

Students planning to work in the health care industry need a strong background in science, as well as demonstrated clinical and research experience. At JWU, you can prepare for a career in health by majoring in Biology, Exercise and Sports Science, or Health Science.

Pre-Health Advising

Equine Science student working with a horse.


Veterinary school is very competitive, so students need a solid academic record, along with outstanding problem-solving skills and, of course, an affinity for animals. Pre-vet students at JWU typically major in Biology or Animal Science.

Pre-Health Advising

A Wildcat’s Journey from Biology to PA

Pathway to Healing

Destini Quinones '19, '22 M.S.P.A.S. credits her biology professors for being supportive during her undergraduate years at JWU. “They were always encouraging us to follow our dreams,” she says. “I told all of my professors about my interest in becoming a physician assistant (PA), and they always supported me.”

Associate Professor Kristin Rosler, Ph.D., was one of Quinones’ biggest mentors. “She continuously helped me throughout my journey,” Quinones says. “She would instruct me on the best classes to take to get into the program, let me know when it was best to apply, helped me with my personal statement and practiced interviewing with me when the time came. I could never thank her and all of my JWU professors enough for what they all did for me.”

Now, thanks to a competitive pathway, she can call JWU her alma mater for two degrees. When asked what advice she would give anyone looking to follow this career path: “Always remember why you started in the first place.”

Read Destini’s Story

headshot of Destini Quinones

Featured Faculty

Colleen Less

Pre-Law Advising: Colleen Less

Colleen Less’ legal experience ranges from transactional work in contracts to business formation, intellectual property protection and litigation.

About Colleen Less

A photo of Kristin Rosler, Ph.D.

Pre-Health/Pre-Med Advising: Kristin Rosler

Kristin Rosler, Ph.D., approaches each class as a scientific story and greatly enjoys making science and medicine approachable and relevant to her students. In addition, she serves as a Pre-Health Graduate Advisor.

About Kristin Rosler

A headshot of Jackie Bowser

Pre-Vet Advising: Jackie Bowser

Jackie Bowser is always looking for new ways to incorporate research into the student experience at JWU and build on her significant equine research experience.

About Jackie Bowser

Associate Professor Cara Sammartino

Pre-Health Advising: Cara Sammartino

Cara Sammartino Ph.D., M.S.P.H., has led JWU’s Public Health program into tremendous growth and has provided students with opportunities in Rhode Island and beyond.

About Cara Sammartino

Expertise and Excellence

JWU professors are committed to developing your skills and sharing their industry experience to prepare you for the challenges ahead.

Meet Our Faculty

More Reasons to Choose JWU

A male student smiling

Student Support Services

JWU believes every student should have the tools they need to get a great college education.

Student Support Services

students shaking hands

Experiential Education

We connect you to employers and professional development opportunities.

Experiential Education

Karyn Jimenez-Elliott (right) teaching a design class at JWU.

Faculty with industry experience

With JWU's unique approach to education, you work closely with faculty who have expertise in their own unique disciplines.

JWU Faculty