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Admitted Students

The Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine welcomes you to the Physician Assistant Program. To get a better idea of what to expect during your time in the program, please review the academic calendar information below, then follow the steps on our to-do list leading up to orientation.

Academic Calendar

The following academic calendar is subject to change based on programmatic needs. Dates are tentative.

1st Term Term Begins Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Orientation Tuesday, May 28 - Friday May 31
Juneteenth Holiday Wednesday, June 19
White Coat Ceremony Friday, June 21
Independence Day Thursday, July 4
Labor Day Holiday Monday, Sept. 2
Term Concludes Tuesday, Sept. 24
2nd Term Term Begins Wednesday, Sept. 25
Fall Break Monday, Sept. 25 - Wednesday, Sept. 27
PA Week Sunday, Oct. 6 - Saturday, Oct. 12
Thanksgiving Holiday Thursday, Nov. 28 - Friday, Nov. 29
Winter Break Saturday, Dec. 14, 2024 - Sunday, Jan. 5, 2025
MLK Jr. Holiday Monday, Jan. 20
Term Concludes Tuesday, Feb. 4
3rd Term Term Begins Wednesday, Feb. 5
Spring Break Wednesday, April 2 - Friday, April 4
Exam Week Monday, May 12 - Friday, May 16
Term Concludes Friday, May 16
End of Year Break Saturday, May 17 - Sunday, Jun 1

Onboarding Steps by Month

 Upon Receiving an Offer of Admission

1. Accept Your Offer and Submit Your Enrollment Deposit 

Information about the enrollment deposit and acceptance form will be outlined in the offer letter and associated communication.

2. Plan Your Visit to Campus!

We'd love to meet you in person! As noted in offer communication, we welcome you to spend a day with us. A visit will include a campus tour, meet & greet with our team, attendance in class, and lunch with current students.

3. Submit Your Official Academic Transcripts

Enrolling students are required to submit official transcripts from all prior college coursework directly to the Northwestern University PA Program for student record purposes. This includes all official transcripts originally sent to CASPA as a required part of the application, and official transcripts from coursework completed after the application was submitted.

Enrolling students may begin sending final, official transcripts in January preceding June enrollment. Official transcripts originally sent to CASPA cannot be reused or forwarded. Wait until any in-progress coursework is completed (with letter grade) before sending your transcript. All official transcripts must be received by May 27, 2024.

4. Complete The Required Background Check

Details will be communicated at the time at which your enrollment deposit is received the Program.


1. Start Scheduling and Completing Immunizations

Mandatory health entrance requirements must be completed by all students prior to the start of classes. It is strongly advised that newly admitted students begin completing these health entrance requirements as soon as possible to allow for the possibility of multiple visits to a healthcare provider and/or significant waiting periods to allow for immunity to be established post-immunization.

These requirements will be covered in detail early in the onboarding process.

For a preview, please consult the the Student Immunization Form provided by the Northwestern Medicine Student Health Service. Your goal will be to complete this process by May 1.

Please note that the negative TB Quantiferon Gold result must be produced on or after April 1.

2. Get to Know Chicago!

Housing & Neighborhoods

A Housing Guide will be provided to incoming students in December. In addition, incoming students will be able to connect with current students via Slack and email to ask housing questions.

Public Transit (CTA U-Pass)

All students will be issued a Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) Ventra U-Pass card at the start of Orientation Week. 

For a fee, students can opt-in to receive the U-Pass benefit ahead of each academic trimester. The U-Pass benefit grants the holder unlimited rides on the CTA "L" and bus systems (but not on Metra or Pace systems).

For students who opt-out of the benefit, the Ventra U-Pass transit card acts like a standard transit card available to all transit riders, and funds can be added online or at kiosks found at CTA train stations.

  • CTA: Chicago Transit Authority
  • Divvy: Bicycle Sharing Program
  • Metra: Regional transit system serving Cook County and 5 surrounding counties
  • Pace: Regional transit bus system for the Chicago suburbs

Shuttle Services




Schedule immunizations

Mandatory health entrance requirements must be completed by all students prior to the start of classes. It is strongly advised that newly admitted students begin completing these health entrance requirements as soon as possible, so ample time is allotted to complete the antibody titer testing, tuberculosis screening, and vaccination history.

The Student Immunization Form can be accessed online through Northwestern Medicine Student Health Service. Complete and submit the form on or before May 1.



1. Log into CAESAR with your NetID and activate your Northwestern University email account.

In February, you'll be emailed once your NetID has been activated. The email will include instructions on how to access CAESAR (the student portal) and activate your email account.

2. Submit FAFSA and NU Aid Applications.

Visit the Financial Aid page for full information on the cost of attendance and how to apply for aid.

Tuition billing statements are accessible as early as the 10th of the month preceding the start of a new term. For first-term tuition billing purposes, this date is May 10. Enrolling students should monitor their account on CAESAR for Financial Aid distribution information and billing statements. The enrollment deposit is applied to the student billing statement for the first-term of the first-year.


1. Submit your White Coat Ceremony RSVP.

Enrolling Northwestern University Physician Assistant Program students are invited to join faculty, staff and guests at the White Coat Ceremony to celebrate their induction into the medical community and recite the Physician Assistant Oath. Enrolling students are required to attend. Friends and family are welcome to attend.

2. Review the textbook list (if finalized).

The text book list for the new academic year will be available in April preceding Orientation. Admitted student will be emailed the textbook list. The following are recommendations for the purchasing of text books:

  • Northwestern University Bookstore Chicago Campus location: Abbott Hall, First Floor
  • Directly from the publishers
  • Other online resources and text book distributors


1. Remember these important dates.

2. Complete Book Club assignment.

Associated with the Behavioral & Preventive Medicine class, Book Club is an initial assignment in which students are assigned a non-fiction book prior to the start of classes. During Orientation week, first-year students participate in discussion that interrelates the content of the book, the PA Program's mission and vision statements, and the focus of the Behavioral & Preventive Medicine course.

3. Accept or waive health insurance.

All students are required to have health insurance while in their studies at Northwestern University. If you do not have your own health insurance at the time you enroll, you will automatically be enrolled in the University's health insurance plan.

Northwestern University provides a student insurance plan at competitive rates for enrolling students. Once enrolled, students are automatically enrolled for subsequent academic terms after a mandatory July renewal to coincide with the annual cycle for Student Insurance processing. If you do not want to enroll in the Northwestern University plan, you can waive this option and you must provide proof of outside coverage.

For questions, please contact the Student Health Insurance Office for the Chicago Campus at 312-503-1242.


Attend Orientation: May 30 - June 2, 2023

A schedule will be released closer to the date.

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