Jul 18, 2024  
2021-2022 Catalog 
2021-2022 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Health Professions


Pre-Healthcare Pathways are not offered as majors at Western (nor are they at most other universities) but they can be incorporated into or taken alongside any academic major offered at Western.

Most healthcare programs emphasize the importance of a liberal arts education and do not recruit students from one specific major or discipline. As long as specific prerequisite coursework is completed, professional schools do not discriminate based on major. Therefore, students have flexibility in planning their time at Western.  

The Health Professions Advising office encourages students to use their undergraduate years to explore many academic fields, to develop foundational skills and knowledge, to demonstrate expertise, and to experience a field of study (major) of their choice. Students tend to excel in a major they truly enjoy, so for many pre-health students that is a major in the sciences like Biology or Chemistry. However, students have majored in a diverse range of academic disciplines including Anthropology, Behavioral Neuroscience, Communication Studies, Psychology, History, Philosophy, Languages (i.e. Spanish), and Fairhaven self-designed programs. Some other popular options are combined majors such as Anthropology/Biology, Biochemistry, and Cellular & Molecular Biology.

Academic Pathways






Pre-Occupational Therapy  



Pre-Physical Therapy  

Pre-Physician Assistant  

Pre-Veterinary Medicine  

For more information on Health Professions Pathways, visit wwu.edu/careers/prehealth.shtml or contact Anna Tognazzini at 360-650-4240, anna.tognazzini@wwu.edu.

Health Professions Advising Events

Typical programming events offered by the Health Professions Advising office (but are not limited to):


  • Orientation Session: What it Means to be Pre-Health at Western
  • Health Professional & Grad School Info Fair (October)
  • Winter Registration Drop-in Advising


  • Faculty Research Panel (February)
  • Spring Registration Drop-in Advising


  • The Professional School Application: A session overviewing the process (April)
  • Fall Registration Drop-in Advising