The Best Colleges for Dermatology

Learn all about the skin you're in at these great schools

As one of the most niche fields in medicine, dermatology does not often get much national attention. But it should! Dermatology is one of the most important fields in the medical world. Professionals in this field of work help treat your skin for any and all types of issues: including cancers that can sometimes be lethal. Work in dermatology is so important, and as such, students interested in medicine should definitely consider entering into this field. You might just save somebody’s skin! 

While almost all career fields in dermatology require further schooling beyond the undergraduate level, most dermatology programs won’t require as much schooling as some other areas of medicine do, which is a bonus for those who shiver at the thought of another decade in academic following graduation. 

With that said, getting a degree in dermatology will still demand at least a few extra years beyond your undergraduate degree, so plan on setting aside some years after undergrad to become a dermatologist. 

That may sound like a long time, but investing in a career in the medical field can be an incredibly satisfying and fulfilling career choice. Not to mention that it’s a career that offers wages that tend to be much higher than other jobs. 

What should you study for dermatology? 

During your undergraduate education, be sure to major in a science field if you are interested in going down the path of dermatology. Undergrad majors who choose to study biology, chemistry, human sciences, or nursing will have a head start when continuing their education in the field of dermatology. 

These majors help give students the foundational knowledge necessary to be able to operate at a higher level of study that a post-graduate dermatology education will demand. These majors are also extremely versatile, so if you decide not to go with dermatology as a career option, you can be sure to find something just as fulfilling within the field of medicine or beyond with one of these undergraduate majors. 

What can dermatology do?

Dermatology is the study of conditions that affect the skin, hair, and nails. It’s an area of medicine that many people forget about, but it is incredibly important to pay attention to for your health and well-being. 

While going to school for dermatology will help you be on your way to becoming a practicing dermatologist, there are other career paths you can take once you’ve passed the exam to legally practice. 

Most students pursuing dermatology do become dermatologists, and some do explore other career options within the field. Some other career options include: 

  • Plastic surgeon 
  • Laser Treatment Specialist
  • Teacher

Who is the Dermatology field for? 

Dermatology is an interesting field that is great for anyone curious about pursuing medicine. More specifically, it’s an area of science that deals heavily with biology and chemistry and would be great for someone looking to get more specified education within the medical field.

This field is also perfect for someone looking to enter the medical field without having to do the intensive, years-long study program that many other professions in the medical field demand. Most dermatology residencies are either four years of schooling or less which sure beats going to medical school for eight years as many other professions require. 

While there is no perfect school for anyone, there are so many amazing dermatology schools out there that might be the perfect fit for you. Below are a few of the nation’s best programs in dermatology that do not require students to spend more than four years within their institution. 

With these schools, you’ll get a great degree in dermatology in no time! 

Opportunities in the medical field are vast. Students going into medicine often dream of becoming cardiac surgeons, dentists, or pediatricians. But not many dream of dermatology. 

Stanford University 

This well-known school takes the top spot for a great education in dermatology on our list. Stanford offers three fantastic dermatology courses available to medical students who want to specialize in the field. Students will take these courses while also completing their other required courses for a medical degree. 

Stanford also gives students the option to complete a Clinical Scholar Track, one of the first of its kind in the nation. This additional educational option allows students to have more one-on-one mentorship with instructors in the dermatology field while investigating research opportunities. This addition to their program helps shoot Stanford to the top of the list of best colleges for dermatology. 

University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania makes many lists of the best colleges in the country for their other programs in the medical field. But they made our list because of their top-notch dermatology programs. 

A unique aspect of the University of Pennsylvania’s dermatology program is that they give students heaps of options for where they can practice medicine. Students will spend their first year in residency in places like a Veterans Affairs Center, a children’s dermatology clinic, and a dermatologic surgery center (just to name a few). 

The diverse array of training opportunities for dermatology students puts the University of Pennsylvania high on our list for dermatological studies, and it might earn a spot on your list too.

New York University 

New York University is another well-known private school with a robust dermatology program. In addition to having a thorough residency where students are rotated through a variety of different locations to build the required skills to practice medicine, students at NYU also get to rotate through specialty clinics in the Skin and Cancer Unit. 

The specialization offered by NYU and the availability to rotate through one of the most prestigious dermatological units in the nation gives the school extra points when it comes to the dermatology education program. 

Another benefit of attending NYU? The thriving city life. New York City has plenty for young residents to do from nightlife to strolls through beautiful parks. When they’re not studying dermatology, that is. 

Some universities offer additional programs for students to expand their studies such as the University of Miami which offers students the chance to perform community service in the area. 

The University of Miami 

If you’re interested in a great dermatology education and fair, tropical weather, the University of Miami might just be the place for you. 

At the University of Miami, students get everything they need from a reputable dermatology program. In-depth rotations, focused research, and independent study are just some of the areas of education that the University of Miami offers its students. 

But the University of Miami also has another good thing going for it that not many other programs around the United States have. 

The University of Miami offers a variety of community service activities to help and encourage students in their program to give back. These community service projects can help students connect with the people who they will eventually be helping, while allowing them to further explore their education outside of the classroom. 

The University of Pittsburgh 

In its three-year residency program, The University of Pittsburgh offers students a wide range of options in their study. In addition to the regular rotations that the school offers students studying dermatology, they also provide students with the option to train in specialty clinics including a Wound-Healing Clinic and a Pigmented Lesion Clinic.

Specialized training in clinics outside of basic university health rotations can elevate students’ studies so that they can have a wider breadth of knowledge. 

Another great benefit of specialized study outside of basic rotations is that it can help students get a better idea of what they would like to do post-graduation. Because dermatology, like many other areas of the medical field, is a space that has so many different options for specialization. 

Having the chance to test the waters in specialized areas of dermatology is great for students who might not know exactly what they want to do within the field. But you can definitely find out what direction you’d like to go at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Dermatology is one of those medical fields where no matter what you do, it’s hard to end up in the wrong spot. Aside from setting yourself up for a stable and meaningful career, you can also expect to make a good living from dermatology—which is no small thing. 

And like the field itself, it is hard to be led astray when looking for a great program for dermatology. So many schools across the country offer amazing educational opportunities for students that it can be hard to narrow down just which one you should choose! But while each program is a little different, you can be sure to find some of the best colleges for dermatology on this list.

Sophia Carlisle
Sophia Carlisle is a professional writer.
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