Pathways to Practice

Berkman/Jackson Fellows in Urban Health

Berkman/Jackson Fellows in Urban Health

Berkman/Jackson Fellows in Urban Health is named for former CSU President Ronald Berkman, Ph.D. and founding Community Advisory Board President (and former Co-Director) Edgar B. Jackson, Jr., M.D. This program is an initiative for first generation students from Cleveland/inner-ring suburbs whose path toward admission to medical school may be nontraditional, including students who need additional academic support or are making a career change. We are particularly looking for students from Northeast Ohio who intend to return to the area to practice medicine. This program allows students to become more competitive and successful in the medical school admissions environment. Through coursework support, MCAT assistance and a two-year urban health curriculum, students invited to this program have the added support, experience and mentorship needed to be more attractive to many medical school’s admission committees.

To be qualified for the program, you should be from one of our target populations (non-traditional college student, first-generation college student and from Cleveland/inner-ring suburbs), have a GPA of near 3.0 or higher, and earned at least 60 credit hours including general biology (200/202 with labs) and general chemistry (261/262 with labs) by the time you plan to begin our program (you CAN apply while taking these courses, but they should be complete BEFORE entering the program). Post-baccalaureate students must additionally have a college degree and apply to Cleveland State and be accepted. 

You must complete three steps toward becoming a Berkman/Jackson Fellow in Urban Health: 

  1. All applicants must complete a Berkman/Jackson Fellow's Application.
  2. Have two recommendation forms submitted by professional, academic or other references. Forms must be completed and submitted by references. Send the following link to the persons completing each recommendation to access the form:
  3. Send copies of ALL unofficial transcripts to

When sending unofficial transcripts, attach ALL transcripts to one email. Include student's last name, first initial and "Unofficial transcript(s)" in the subject line.  

Our team will carefully review your application and let you know if you have been invited to interview with us. We will make final decisions about admission to the program after the interviews and review of two letters recommendations.

Berkman Jackon Fellows Application 

*Applications are considered on an on-going (rolling) basis and are limited by space in our program and course enrollment timelines. While rolling, the suggested deadline for the letter is January 31 to ensure priority for interviews and admission. 

There is no additional application fee (over and above the CSU application fee). 

No scholarships or financial assistance are offered or assured by acceptance into our program (opportunities may arise when financial assistance is offered as a way to defray costs for tuition, books, MCAT prep, etc., but this assistance varies with fund availability).

We are looking for students we believe are excellent candidates for medical school but may not fully qualify for other programs that may provide early assurance. The Berkman/Jackson Fellows in Urban Health program will provide mentorship, course counseling, MCAT prep and ongoing guidance to ensure that students are prepared for entrance into and success in medical school. 

For more information, or to see if you might qualify, please contact us at or call 216.802.3193.

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