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MS in Cellular and Molecular Oncology

Pursue cancer research alongside Loyola's expert scientists

At Loyola University Chicago, we offer a unique, research-focused program that equips master-level scientists with the skills to pursue potentially life-saving approaches to cancer. With a Master of Science in Cellular and Molecular Oncology, you will gain hands-on research training in the lab and learn about the many ways to design hypotheses and interpret primary research results. Leading cancer researchers from the Department of Cancer Biology will mentor you and help you achieve success in your research. You also will have the opportunity to support ongoing research in key areas of Oncology at Loyola's Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center. Although our program is young, our graduates have proven success in pursuing PhD or MD programs or becoming clinical coordinators, research assistants, or senior scientists at pharmaceutical companies.

Our Commitment To You

Graduates of Loyola's Master of Science in Cellular and Molecular Oncology will possess the following knowledge, skills, and professional values to pursue a career in the pharmaceutical, biotech, or biomedical industries.

KNOWLEDGE: 

Students develop a solid understanding of cancer risks, development, and therapy. They learn to use molecular, genetic, and pharmacologic tools to answer questions related to cancer initiation, progression, and how the immune system interacts with various cancers.

SKILLS: 

Each student will become expert in designing experiments to test hypotheses and aims related to a cancer-focused project. Students also learn how to interact with basic scientists and clinical oncologists.

PROFESSIONAL VALUES:

Students learn and study in an environment that values ethics, collaboration, and honesty.

Curriculum

Our curriculum prepares you to tackle many challenges in cancer research.

In your first semester, you will take courses in basic biomedical sciences and rotate through multiple cancer research labs. These rotations provide you with insights into the department's labs, which focus on:

  • Signal transduction and experimental therapeutics
  • Tumor immunology and immunotherapy
  • Gene regulation and epigenetics
  • Stem cell biology

Students must complete a minimum of 30 credits during the two-year MS program.  For example: 17 credit hours of required and elective courses and 13 credit hours consisting of research, seminars, and journal clubs. Coursework provides students with training in the biomedical sciences and focused knowledge in oncology. Seminar attendance is required and allows students to learn about oncology research innovations evolving in real time. We encourage Cellular and Molecular Oncology students to participate in journal clubs, which foster collaboration through a student-centered approach.

YEAR ONE: FALL

  • BMCS 412 Cell Biology (4 credits)
  • BMCS 405 Ethics in Biomedical Sciences (1 credit)
  • CMO 503 Special Topics in Oncology (1 credit)
  • CMO 502 Oncology Seminar Series (0 credits)
  • CMO 499 Research (2 laboratory rotations; 2 credits)
  • MBSC 402 Statistical Methods for Biomedical Sciences (2 credits)

Total credits: 10

YEAR ONE: SPRING

  • MBIO 590 Molecular Biology of Oncogenesis (3 credits)
  • CMO 503 Special Topics in Oncology (1 credit)
  • CMO 502 Oncology Seminar Series (0 credits)
  • CMO 499 Research (3 credits)
  • Elective (3 credits)

Total credits: 10

YEAR ONE: SUMMER

  • Thesis proposal

YEAR TWO: FALL

  • CMO 503 Special Topics in Oncology (1 credit)
  • CMO 499 Research (8 credits)
  • CMO 502 Oncology Seminar Series (0 credits)
  • CMO 595 Thesis Supervision (0 credits)

Total credits: 9

YEAR TWO: SPRING 

  • CMO 503 Special Topics in Oncology (1 credit)
  • CMO 502 Oncology Seminar Series (0 credits)
  • CMO 595 Thesis Supervision (0 credits)

Total credits: 1

ELECTIVES 

  • BMB 417 Molecular Biology
  • BMB 490 Special Topics: Epigenetics and Stem Cells
  • IDIM 400 Infectious and Immunity
  • ICB 403 Graduate Histology
  • MMIM 471 Molecular Microbial Genetics
  • MMIM 502 Special Topics: Pillars in Immunology
  • PHAR 408 Receptor & Molecular Pharmacology
  • PHAR 409 Principles of Pharmacology

Admission

Ready to apply? This is a good place to start.

DEADLINES

We accept applications for the MS in Cellular and Molecular Oncology on a rolling basis. Early application is encouraged; we begin evaluating applications in early December. The deadline for all application materials is June 15.  Please note: the only documents that cannot be uploaded with an application are transcripts and official test scores.  Please email those documents directly to: gradapp@luc.edu. There is no fee to apply.

APPLICATION PROCESS

1. COMPLETED APPLICATION

  • Apply online or mail application to:

    Graduate and Professional Enrollment Management
    Loyola University Chicago
    820 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1200
    Chicago, IL 60611

2. OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS

  • Applicants should have completed at least a bachelor's degree to apply. Transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate work are required for admission.

3. LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION

  • Applicants must submit three letters of recommendation.

4. STATEMENT OF PURPOSE

  • Your statement of purpose should be a brief, one page statement that explains your interest in this program.

5. INTERVIEW

  • A virtual interview is required for admission. International applicants can interview by phone or video conference.

INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS

International applicants must have a degree equivalent to a U.S. Bachelor's degree and are required to submit the above documents as well as:

  • TOEFL or IELTS scores
  • A Declaration and Certification of Finances Form
  • Evaluations of international transcripts sent by any member organization of NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services)

Questions? Contact Student Program Recruiter Anna Dauzvardis.

Request more information about our graduate programs.

Tuition and Financial Aid

The Biomedical Sciences Graduate Programs and Loyola's Financial Aid Office are committed to helping students secure the financial resources to make their education at Loyola affordable.

Faculty

Students have the opportunity to work closely with faculty-mentors. Read about their research interests.

Outcomes

An MS in Cellular and Molecular Oncology will prepare graduates for a career with Pharma, Biotech., or Biomedical companies/organizations. Graduates will have strong academic and research skills, which can help you become a leading candidate for further study in a PhD or MD program.

At Loyola University Chicago, we offer a unique, research-focused program that equips master-level scientists with the skills to pursue potentially life-saving approaches to cancer. With a Master of Science in Cellular and Molecular Oncology, you will gain hands-on research training in the lab and learn about the many ways to design hypotheses and interpret primary research results. Leading cancer researchers from the Department of Cancer Biology will mentor you and help you achieve success in your research. You also will have the opportunity to support ongoing research in key areas of Oncology at Loyola's Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center. Although our program is young, our graduates have proven success in pursuing PhD or MD programs or becoming clinical coordinators, research assistants, or senior scientists at pharmaceutical companies.