Do I need to be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident (Green Card holder) in order to apply for your program?

No; however, it is preferred. Applications are being considered on an individual basis.

What counts toward an acceptance?

Scores (NBDE I, NBDE II and TOEFL), previous grades (ECE and calculated GPA), your personal statement and professional experiences in the U.S. and your home country are the most important elements to be granted an interview. The interview is very important and it is mandatory to present yourself for an interview if invited.

Why are you so strict with the TOEFL score?

An article in the Journal of Dental Education* stated that one of the more predictive admissions criteria for success is the TOEFL score or language skills. By being strict with the language requirement, we indicate that it is important. The better your English communication skills, the better your chances to succeed in the program.

I will be in Richmond next week. Can I meet with you and discuss the program?

VCU is a state school and open throughout the year. While you are free to visit the school, we do not schedule meetings with any future candidates unless they are scheduled interviews. This allows us to be as fair as possible during the application process.

My spouse is also a dentist and is applying for your program and we want to go to the same school. Can we both be accepted the same year?

A spouse will not be accepted automatically if the other is accepted. It is a competitive program and each person will be evaluated on his/her own merits.

Does VCU offer any scholarships for IDP students?

VCU does not have any scholarships for IDP students. You might be eligible for federal student loans pending your visa status. U.S. citizens and resident aliens (permanent residents), commonly called Green Card holders, are eligible for federal student loans. Permanent residents may have to meet some additional criteria that will be decided on a case-by-case basis by the government.

You might want to check the information on the VCU Business Services Scholarship Opportunities website Link opens in new window.

Can I get student loans for the preliminary course?

Yes, but you must be eligible for federal student loans. If you are accepted, you must pay a deposit to secure your position. The summer course payments are spread over several months. Eligible students can apply for loans and be reimbursed once school has started and even before that. Detailed information is provided during the interview sessions. If you decide to accept another school’s offer, the deposit will not be reimbursed.

Modified with permission from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry website. Special thanks to Dr. Peter Berthold, director of PASS.

*Lisa E. Itaya, David W. Chambers, and Patricia A. King. Analyzing the Influence of Admissions Criteria and Cultural Norms on Success in an International Dental Studies Program, Journal of Dental Education (2008), 72: 317-328.