To increase your chances of success as a medical student, gain the skills of a well-rounded leader by pursuing the best pre-med majors.

When deciding on an undergraduate course of study and the best pre-med majors, many future medical-school candidates choose subjects they feel are relevant to a career in medicine. The truth is that the best pre-med majors might be less obvious. Admissions boards value a high grade point average (GPA), proof of a strong and determined work ethic, and excellent Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) scores over the type of major pursued during undergraduate work. Though they aren’t recognized as traditional pre-med programs, these eight of the best pre-med majors will give students with excellent grades an edge over the competition, setting them apart from cloned members of the candidate pack.

1. Public Health

best pre-med majorsPursuing a degree in public health, such as those offered through the programs at East Kentucky University and Johns Hopkins University, allows students to explore the policies and processes in the medical industry and could be one of the best pre-med majors. Choosing this type of program reveals a side of medicine that many pre-med students don’t see and might not fully understand as doctors. Through internships and working with hospital professionals in areas such as healthcare policy, prevention, and substance abuse, students make invaluable connections during their undergraduate careers.