The field of human genetics translates research into clinical practice almost instantaneously. Thus, a need for genetic counselors with a strong research background, and researchers with patient communication and clinical translation skills, is imperative. VCU School of Medicine is proud to offer one of the only dual human genetics Ph.D. and genetic counseling M.S. programs in the U.S. Students enrolled in this rigorous and rewarding program have the advantage of efficiently pursuing a genetic counseling M.S. degree and a Ph.D. degree simultaneously.

Dual degree program clinical space

Completing the dual degree program was an incredibly rewarding experience from beginning to end. It was amazing to obtain experience in clinical genetics while also building a foundation of knowledge regarding genomic laboratory techniques used for both research and diagnostic applications. It is an exciting time to be considering this career path, and I would encourage students who are interested in pursuing both genetic counseling and research to do exactly that!

Kelly Rafferty, M.S., Ph.D.

Class of 2017

Program Structure

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Life in Richmond

We encourage our students and trainees to maintain a healthy, balanced life, and Richmond is a wonderful place to engage in that well-rounded lifestyle. As a mid-sized city with a metropolitan population of 1.3 million, Richmond provides stimulating activities while maintaining its intimate feel and unique vibe. 

Learn about our community ❯

Photograph of Richmond city and the James River.

How to Apply

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York Lab

Contact Us

For more information about the dual degree program, please contact:

John Quillin, Ph.D.
Director, Dual Degree Program