Leading European universities for future medical professionals

Consider some of the best accounts of medical treatments you’ve heard: an aunt’s biopsy procedure handled with care; a relative’s successful chemotherapy; and most recently, the news that a cure for HIV is possible. Behind these feats are the individuals that make them possible. Dedicated and highly-qualified medical professionals, whether in practice or research, are the very people pushing the boundaries of medical science in human beings’ often extraordinary moments of fear, anxiety and doubt.

It’s no wonder medical professionals are in-demand everywhere. The United States’ Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that healthcare occupations will grow at an average of 18 percent from 2016 to 2026, adding 2.4 million jobs to the economy. In the European region, the World Health Organization (WHO) said “the number of health workers in the region may not be sufficient to cover the future health needs of an ageing population, despite an increase of health workers in the past decade”.

Source: Humanitas University

Globally, management consultants McKinsey & Company estimates that healthcare-related jobs “could grow by 80 million to 130 million by 2030”. And as the world faces a growing population and ageing society, the need for medical professionals will only grow.

In the past, we owed the existence of these respected, adept individuals to the institutions that made these remarkable achievements, from the smallest bandage procedure to the discovery of life-saving antibiotics, possible. The future will depend on these institutions. Join this elite group and make an impact on individuals and communities; start your education at one of these five leading universities for future medical professionals:


Located in Milan, Humanitas University is an International University dedicated to Life Sciences where education and training are fully integrated with Humanitas Hospital and Scientific Research.

The six-year medical undergraduate programme here is taught entirely in English. Around 40 percent of students are foreigners, originating from more than 25 countries worldwide.

Interactive teaching is central to the institution’s pedagogy, emphasising Problem-Based Learning, Case Method, Concept Maps and Portfolios. The university also encourages students to attend seminars and conferences, as well as to study and research abroad through the Erasmus programme. Moreover, students can live and study in a smart Campus technologically advanced in its infrastructure and its services, and they can train in the Mario Luzzatto Simulation Centre, integrating theoretical knowledge with practical skills, thanks to its emergency room, operating theatres, ambulatories, clinical and surgical skill rooms and multimedia booths.

With its affiliation with Humanitas Research Hospital – an institution quality-certified by the Joint Commission International and considered by Harvard University to be one of the four most innovative hospitals globally – students here have the opportunity to gain invaluable real-world experience in a world-class setting.

Source: Humanitas University

Students can conduct their third-year clerkship here or at the research centre, known for its research and treatment of immune system-related disease, from cancer to cardiovascular diseases, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.

With a Humanitas degree, graduates are ready to take on their chosen career in medicine, be it clinical practice or research, in Italy or abroad. The admission test for international students will be taking place on June 24th 2019.


University of Zagreb School of Medicine is the oldest, most respected and largest medical studies institution in the Republic of Croatia. With its long tradition of educating foreign students, the School of Medicine’s latest offer is its six-year Medical Studies in English (MSE) Programme. Entirely instructed in English, it meets both American (USMLE) and European Union standards.

Since 2005/2006, the School has been recognised by the Government of Canada in the way that Canadian citizens are eligible to apply for government (OSAP) student funding. This makes the School of Medicine the ideal platform for aspiring doctors looking to gain competence in an international environment.

The MSE curriculum consists of more than 5,500 hours of teaching, 360 ECTS and 10-15 percent electives, which include subjects like Pharmacogenomics, Basics of Paediatric Allergy and Clinical Nutrition. The programme is recognised by the European Consortium of Accreditation and awarded with a CEQUINT Certificate.

Source: University of Zagreb, School of Medicine

The programme enrols 50 students per academic year. Currently, it has 280 full-time students from 29 countries all over the world. For admission requirements, the university assesses candidates’ performance in pre-medical tests, BA/BSc degree in natural sciences and performance in a written exam for biology, chemistry and physics – full details can be found here. Interested candidates should submit the necessary documents and fees, as listed here, to the School of Medicine.


For a world-class medical or biomedical degree in Scandinavia, head to Stockholm, Sweden, where the Department of Medicine at the Karolinska Institute (KI) is based. Offering primarily undergraduate, but also postgraduate and PhD programmes, students here gain frontline knowledge and expertise.

The undergraduate programmes offered are in biomedicine and medicine. Graduate programmes focus on several research areas within medical science such as biostatistics, epidemiology, skin inflammatory diseases research, and experimental neuroscience. At present, the department has 170 registered PhD students.

“One of the institution’s strengths is proximity to patients, with good access to patient samples from well-characterized patients. By conducting basic research of spearhead in a clinical environment, there are excellent opportunities for integrating basic research and patient-related research,” says the university. The department also conducts extensive research, executed in 46 research groups within 12 research divisions, and representing a broad range of medical entities.For Nishi Dave, a Bachelor’s in Biomedicine student from India/Belgium, the university’s reputation in research was one of the deciding factors for her to enrol. “Studying at KI is helping me get one step closer to that future me,” she explains.


Leiden University may be Netherlands’ oldest university, but its Medical Centre (LUMC) is a modern institution for research, education and patient care. Education here is in line with the latest international insights and standards, thanks to its unique research practice.

LUMC offers several programmes at the undergraduate level. For BioMedical sciences, the Bachelor  and Master of Science degrees train scientists who investigate underlying causes. Other Bachelor degrees taught here include Clinical Technology and Medicine. At the postgraduate level, Master of Science degrees are also offered in Pharmacy, Sensing and Stimulation, Technical Medicine and Vitality and Ageing.

LUMC’s teachers are the doctors and scientists who work there, providing students with real examples from their experience and insights from the latest developments in their field. Learning is small-scale, meaning a lot of discussion or group work on a project.

Source: Leiden University

International students can also look forward to a university that supports different interests, as well as the small scale of the city and the its historic centre that give Leiden a unique, relaxed but at the same time, lively atmosphere.


With over 2,000 staff and 5,000 students, King’s College London’s Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine is one of the largest and most successful centres for research and education in the UK. It’s ranked 20th in the world for Medicine by QS World University Ranking by Subject 2019, and 17th in the world for Clinical, Pre-Clinical and Health by Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2018.

Its education and training portfolio include undergraduate health (Medicine, Nutrition & Dietetics, Pharmacy & Physiotherapy), and a suite of related BSc programmes in Biomedical Sciences.

The GKT School of Medical Education has a longstanding association with hospital partners and associated medical schools – Guy’s, King’s College and St Thomas’s Hospital. Located in central London, it works closely with their partner hospitals in research, education and clinical practice to improve healthcare nationally and internationally.

Dr Zita Manjaly, who gained her MBBS degree here and now works as a junior doctor at King’s College Hospital, said: “When I looked at medical schools in London, I chose King’s because of its reputation and because the degree course focuses on clinical skills. The standard of teaching was excellent: a combination of lectures, tutorials, workshops and very early patient contact – I think that’s important because it takes the fear away.”

*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International

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