About the Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program

Thank you for your interest in Northwestern Medicine’s Discovery Program. Our mission is create a pathway for the next generation of Northwestern Medicine leaders by drawing on the talents of our incredible team of health care professionals to provide STEM career exposure. Throughout the program, students will be exposed to a broad range of health care careers through activities including tours, guest speakers, group discussion, and hands-on projects. In addition, the Program fosters character and professional development, cultivates life skills, provides community service and leadership experience, and offers mentorship and networking opportunities. Meetings are held once a month, most often on Saturday mornings from 9:00 am-12:00 pm, during the school year.* Central region will continue to host a two year-program, all other regions will move to a one-year program for applicants entering the 2021-2022 school year.

*Please note, meeting dates, day of the week, times, and topics are subject to change. As of now, we are planning to run the 2021-2022 Discovery Program meeting sessions in-person. We will continue to monitor local and state guidelines.

The Northwestern Medicine Scholars Program currently runs in five chapters: Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Central, Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program North, Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program West, Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Greater DeKalb County and Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Northwest. Chapter participation is based on county residency. Program locations will vary based on chapter. The programs at all locations will be similar, though not identical; there will be some joint activities as scheduling permits.

  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Central Chapter: Cook and Will counties
  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program North Chapter: Lake County
  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program West Chapter: DuPage and Kane counties
  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Greater DeKalb Chapter: DeKalb, Kendall, LaSalle, Lee and Ogle counties
  • Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Northwest Chapter: McHenry County

For more information on each chapter including location and application requirements, and to apply, please visit each Chapter’s page, below.

Please note, if you are a returning Program participant, you will return to your same chapter regardless of county of residence.

Eligibility:

First year applicants must:

  • Be at least 15 years of age.
  • Be entering sophomore or junior year of high school.
  • Have an academic GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 GPA scale or 3.8 on a 5.0 GPA scale.
  • Commit to the program, including attendance at all Discovery Program meetings and community service activities. No more than two excused absences are permitted per year.
  • Commit to abide by all Discovery Program guidelines and policies.
  • Submit the completed First Year applications to the appropriate chapter.

Second year returning applications (Central Chapter only for the 2021-2022 school year) must:

  • Have successfully completed the first year of the Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program and maintained good standing as defined by the guidelines and policies.
  • Be entering junior or senior year of high school.
  • Have an academic GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 GPA scale or 3.8 on a 5.0 GPA scale.
  • Commit to the second year of the program, including attendance at all Discovery Program meetings and community service activities. No more than two excused absences are permitted per year.
  • Submit a re-enrollment application.

Applications

Applications and all required school documents must be submitted by 5:00 pm on Friday, October 1, 2021.


Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Central Chapter

Students performing an ultrasound as part of the Discovery Program.

Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program North Chapter

Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program North Chapter

Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program West Chapter

Students performing CPR as part of the Discovery Program.

Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Greater DeKalb Chapter

A man practices wrapping a cast on the arm of a woman.

Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program Northwest Chapter

Northwestern Medicine Discovery Program students