Health Professions Preview Day

Health & Natural Sciences
Raider Day Friday, Oct. 30, 2020 | 8:15 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Visit Northwestern during a Raider Day specifically designed for students interested in the health and natural sciences professions. Your time on campus will provide:


In a single day, you can explore multiple areas within the health and natural sciences professions, including:


You'll have the opportunity to get to know the professors who will be teaching your classes—as well as current students in Northwestern's health and natural sciences programs—during breakout sessions, a student panel, lab rotations and lunch.

Hands-on experience

You can try out equipment and procedures yourself when you visit Northwestern's nursing, human performance, and/or human anatomy labs. You can also learn about cancer cell research being conducted by NWC professors and students; discover the methods field biologists use to identify animals and their ecological roles; test your analytical thinking in a math problem-solving exercise; or try your hand at some computer coding.

( Note for parents: These lab rotations are designed to introduce students to Northwestern’s learning opportunities. Parents are welcome to attend, but you will likely be on the sidelines and/or outside the actual lab space. There may time to see things for yourself when the rotation time nears its end.)

An introduction to neuroscience and the neuroscience research lab will highlight exciting ways you can learn about the field of neurobiology at Northwestern. This century is being referred to as the “Century of Neuroscience and the Brain,” and this interdisciplinary area of study is one of the most exciting frontiers in all of science. There are dozens of careers related to neuroscience, from basic research into how the nervous system works to clinical careers such as neurology, neurosurgery, psychiatry, clinical psychology, mental health counseling, and many others.

The neuroscience introduction and lab experience is available for all three rotations and can accommodate 10 students per session.

The nursing simulation center provides a safe environment for nursing students to practice their skills and prepare for actual practice as a nurse. Along with a brief tour of the center, you’ll experience hands-on learning with “Apollo” (a human patient simulator) and several other real-life learning opportunities.

This lab is available for all three rotations and can accommodate 10 students per session.

The Human Performance Lab is equipped with tools to test the physical fitness of the general population and the athletic performance of collegiate and elite athletes. Body composition, aerobic fitness/power, and muscular strength are just a few of the variables of interest to students in this area. Northwestern kinesiology students will demonstrate a body composition analysis with an underwater weighing test, perform a VO 2 max test with a metabolic cart, and conduct a Wingate test to measure power output. Be ready to test your vertical jump and anaerobic power!

This lab is available during sessions 2 & 3 and has no limit on the number of participants per session.

Using a variety of preserved animals and skeletons from our collections, you’ll explore how characteristics of animals relate to their feeding strategies, locomotion, and habitat use. Field biologists use these same methods to identify organisms and understand their ecological roles. This type of study is critical to forming hypotheses about newly discovered species, the study of biodiversity, and development of conservation strategies.

This lab is available during session 1 and can accommodate 12 students.

Mathematics is a dynamic enterprise that thrives on teamwork and effective communication of ideas. During this session, you’ll tackle problems that require little in the way of a specific mathematical background but much in the way of analytical thinking.

This session is available during session 3 and can accommodate 12 students.

Whether it’s a laptop, a tablet or a smartphone, computers are a big part of our everyday lives. Many people know how to use the software or apps found on their device, but far fewer people know how to create their own programs. Discover the basics of coding by developing a simple computer game, and find out how coding can have a profound impact on the world around us.

This session is available during sessions 2 and 3 and can accommodate 16 students per session.

When we look up and see the moon in our sky, its surface tells us a story of events past. We see evidence of collisions and ancient volcanic eruptions. This lab will take you through the basics of understanding the geological forces that shaped our moon and how this relates to the planet we call home. It includes a hands-on activity that involves forming craters on test surfaces.

This session is available during sessions 2 & 3 and can accommodate 12 students.

The Perfect Predator tells the story of Steffanie Strathdee’s efforts to save her husband, Tom, from a multidrug-resistant superbug using phage therapy. Phage therapy is quickly gaining attention as a way to avoid the problem of antibiotic resistant “superbugs.” However, to do phage therapy, we need phages—lots of them! Northwestern College students discover and characterize novel bacteriophages as part of the SEA-PHAGES program. One of those NWC phages, JacoRen57, was considered for use in a phage therapy trial in Great Britain to save the life of Isabell, a girl with a multidrug-resistant infection she got following a lung transplant for cystic fibrosis. Come find out how your phage might be the next lifesaver!

This lab is available during sessions 1 & 2 and can accommodate 10 to 12 students per session.

Info about Northwestern′s new science building

Finally, you'll tour our new $24.5 million  DeWitt Family Science Center, which opened in January of 2019.

Online registration for the Health & Natural Sciences Raider Day will open in September.

Why study health and natural sciences at NWC?

  • 80% of Northwestern graduates who continue on to medical school are accepted the first time they apply (compared to a 45% national med school matriculation rate).
  • 92% of Northwestern′s BSN-credentialed nurses pass their board exams on the first attempt.
  • 100% of Northwestern athletic training majors pass their board exams (including 75% on the first attempt).
  • Research experience involving the sequencing of DNA genomes is embedded into three consecutive courses taken by first- and second-year biology students.
  • Northwestern's Human Performance Lab is equipped with a BodPod body composition tracking system, metabolic carts, cycle ergometers, and Exertech underwater weighing tank.
  • Northwestern's athletic training program gives students hands-on experience, as early as their sophomore year, working under the supervision of team doctors and certified athletic trainers to care for and rehabilitate Northwestern student-athletes.