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What colleges would you recommend for a career in forensic pathology?

I'm really interested in the medical aspect of forensic pathology. Ideally, I'd like to work for the government to help victims gain justice.

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Michael’s Answer

Hi Keaghan,

The educational pathway to specialize in Forensic Pathology will be earning a Bachelors Degree in Biology, Chemistry or Forensic Science. While in high school, one will need to focus on science and math classes to prepare for a career in Forensic Pathology. Chemistry and biology will be the core science courses. For math, statistics and calculus will be needed. Both concentrations will enable you to focus and refine your analytical skills; complex problem solving; investigative and innovative critical thinking; attention to detail and observation skills; etc.

Other skills that will need to be built upon center around team building, team work and communication. In any work culture, collaboration amongst team members, partner departments and clients occur on a daily basis. A college course in public speaking, communications and English will help with one's communication and writing skills since analysis reports are generated and findings are presented to colleagues and other professionals who deal with Forensic Pathology. Another recommendation is to seek the advice from your high school guidance counselor and teachers. They can help guide your educational pathway for Forensic Pathology.

Here are some colleges and universities to consider for Forensic Science:

- Penn State University
- Syracuse University
- Texas A&M University
- Virginia Commonwealth University
- George Mason University
- Michigan State University
- University of Tennessee (*There is a body farm that is located on campus).

According to U.S. News & World Report, here are the Best Criminology Schools:

https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-humanities-schools/criminology-rankings

- University of Maryland - College Park
- Arizona State University
- University of California - Irvine
- University of Cincinnati
- Pennsylvania State Park - University Park
- University at Albany - SUNY
- Florida State University
- Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey - Newark
- Michigan State University
- George Mason University

According to U.S. News & World Report, here are the Best Colleges for a Biology major:

- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Harvard University
- Stanford University
- University of Chicago
- John Hopkins University
- University of Pennsylvania
- California Institute of Technology
- Duke University
- Northwestern University
- Dartmouth College

https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/biology-major-2601

According to U.S. News & World Report, here are the Best Colleges for a Chemistry major:

- California Institute of Technology
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- University of California - Berkeley
- Harvard University
- Stanford University
- Northwestern University
- Princeton University
- Scripps Research Institute
- University of Chicago
- University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign
- Columbia University
- Cornell University
- Yale University

https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-science-schools/chemistry-rankings

When reviewing colleges and universities, it is best to check the following:

- In-State vs Out of State Tuition
- Internships
- Scholarships
- Career Placement upon graduation
- Course work and offered classes
- Post-Graduate Degrees - Master and Doctoral

There are scholarships based on need, academic performance, school activities, sports involvement and community service. So, it will be to your advantage to seek out these types of scholarships. All of the academic staff at your high school that you interact with can write letters of recommendations for you based on what was just stated above. These recommendations can greatly help when filling out college and scholarship applications.

Scholarship applications can start to be submitted during your Junior year and will continue throughout your Senior year in high school. It is best to ask your Academic Advisor/School Counselor on the timeline process as well. Scholarship applications will have specific deadlines and requirements to meet in order to be submitted for review and consideration.

You may want to start to compile your resume/portfolio since a majority of scholarship applications will require academic grade point average (GPA), academic accomplishments, school activities (clubs, sports, etc.), community involvement (volunteer, church, etc.), academic and personal recommendations, etc. There may be essay requirements on why you are a qualified candidate to receive the scholarship, what your future goals are academically and professionally and other questions centering around who you are, your beliefs, etc.

Here are a couple of links for College Scholarships:

https://www.mometrix.com/blog/scholarships-for-college/

https://www.nchchonors.org/students/awards-scholarships/national-scholarships

Also, it will be best to check with the colleges and universities that you will be applying to. You can check with the School/Department of your desired major, the Campus Career Center and the Register's Office for additional information for college scholarships and grants and specific requirements for qualifications.

Hope this helps and best wishes for your education and career in Forensic Pathology!
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Lauren’s Answer

It depends on where you live but the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) has one of the top-rated forensics programs in the country.
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