The MEDTEC – Humanitas University

MEDTEC is the result of the collaboration of two universities: Humanitas University and Politecnico di Milano. The faculty allows you, at the end of 6 years, to have a single-cycle master’s degree in Medicine and Surgery and a three-year degree in biomedical engineering. Since the faculty is comparable with the Humanitas medical path, it’s all in English.

The headquarter (the one where you will be enrolled) is Humanitas University, just outside Milan. However, you will also have the excellent opportunity to take lessons with professors from Politecnico di Milano in the Città Studi district.

MEDTEC School

MEDTEC School was born in 2019. It is the answer to the challenges introduced by an increasingly technological world. The main aim is to fuse the medical and engineering dimensions to create doctors able to understand profoundly and manage the technologies that will shape the medical profession to provide patients with innovative and personalised therapies.

The course has 390 ECTS, so 30 additional ECTS compared to the standard Medicine and Surgery School. This means that in the second semester of the last year, MEDTEC students will still have lessons, in contrast to Medical students, who won’t have classes anymore to focus on their thesis preparation.

In the academic year 2022/2023, 70 places are available, of which:

  • 60 are for EU students;
  • 10 for non-EU students.

In 2019 the total number was 50 only for EU students. Still, since 2020 the number has increased to 70, comprising non-EU students, so it is still being determined whether Humanitas will increase the available places.

No English certification is required. Engineering English, similarly to medical English, uses a lot of terms from Greek and Latin, so if you already speak a Romance language (e.g. Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian), you might find a lot of similar terms.

However, you should be able to listen and follow classes in Engish, so the suggestion is to start to train before. Humanitas University also offers extracurricular English classes.

When you start your clerkship, Italian knowledge is required by the second semester of the third year. Extracurricular Italian classes are provided for students who are non-native Italian speakers.

Politecnico of Milan – Città Studi Campus

The first semester of years I to III is held in Politecnico Città Studi Campus in Milan (green line M2 Piola or Lambrate).

The campus is extensive, extending for many blocks and hosting other Engineering courses. It is one of Milan’s leading university areas, and many other students will surround you from Politecnico and The University of Milan will surround you.

It is an amicable place, especially the green Piazza Leonardo Da Vinci, which is a delightful place to chat with friends and eat international food from the food stands.

You can get there by taking the metro line M2 to Piola or Lambrate, depending on the building you need to visit. Some several buses and trams get there, although they might be slower.

You can get there also by car, but you will quickly get stuck in the traffic jams and close parking can be challenging to find.

Hunimed Campus

The second semester of years I to II and the semesters of years IV to VI are instead held in the Hunimed campus. This one is in “Parco Sud” of Milan, a rural area in the southern suburbs of Milan, in the municipality of Pieve Emanuele. The University is adjacent to the Humanitas Hospital to ensure academic and clinical training continuity.

Within the campus, there are:

  • Educational centre (Building A and B)
  • Research centre (Building C)
  • University residence with 240 beds for students (building)
  • Research laboratories (Building E).

Humanitas is also building two additional facilities: one for MEDTEC School and one for research.

From the second semester of the third year onwards, clerkships and clinical years will begin. The lesson will still be at Humanitas University, but clinical activities will be held rotating among different hospitals, namely:

  • Humanitas Hospital in Rozzano;
  • Humanitas San Pio X Hospital in Milan (M3 stop Zara);
  • Humanitas Mater Domini Hospital in Castellanza (VA);
  • Humanitas Gavazzeni Bergamo in Bergamo.

A private shuttle provided by Humanitas takes the students from Humanitas University and Piazza Abbiategrasso to the hospital for clerkships and then back to University/Piazza Abbiategrasso. Clerkships usually are during the morning or afternoon for half day; the other half of the day, there are lessons at the University.

How to get to Humanitas

The Hospital is served by the 230 bus line (Via Manzoni Ospedale Rozzano stop). From there, you can easily reach University by shortcut through Building 8 or just behind it. Still, for the latter one, you will need the University badge to open a gate (Google maps doesn’t know about these two shortcuts).

You can take 230 from Milan at M2 (green line) and stop at Piazza Abbiategrasso.

The 220 bus line also serves the University and the Hospital (Rozzano, Pieve Emanuele, Opera and Locate Triulzo).

You can also reach Humanitas by car, especially if you are already coming from outside Milan. The main road getting to the hospital is very trafficked during day time.

Humanitas University has around 100 parking spots plus extra parking reserved for students living on Humanitas Campus. Parking is currently free upon reservation, but the places are limited compared to the number of students, so getting a parking reservation is difficult. There was a parking fee in the past until A.Y. 2019/2020, but after Covid-19, they made it accessible for everyone, so it is curious if Humanitas will change it again.

There are, however, some other free parking in Rozzano or Pieve Emanuele, like the Vaccination Centre parking.

Where to live

The first three years are more challenging as you move every semester and the two campuses are on opposite sides of Milan. If you are considering living halfway between the two, choose the houses near the southern M2 stops. The M2 green line is efficient and allows you to move relatively quickly, so this should be the target if you consider moving to Milan.

The city centre is costly, but if you move into the neighbourhood of San Vittore, Solari-Tortona, Navigli, Romolo or Piazza Abbiategrasso, you might find something better. Just be aware that the Navigli area can become quite noisy, especially on weekends, because it is one of the main places where people go out at night. Solari-Tortona is a quieter area full of restaurants if you want to go out; it is the perfect area if you want to be outside of the chaos but still very close if you want to go to bars or the city centre. From Romolo to Abbiategrasso, you are moving to the more peripheral part of Milan so that you will feel the difference. Still, many Hunimed students choose to live near Piazza Abbiategrasso because that’s where the bus 230 to Hunimed leaves from.

Another neighbourhood quite popular among Hunimed students is the area just below Bocconi University because it is well connected with tram 3 and 15, both of which stop in Piazza Abbiategrasso.

If you want to live close to the Humanitas, you might choose to live on Campus or find an apartment in Rozzano. However, remember that Rozzano is quiet during the day, especially near the hospital, but walking alone late at night is unsafe.

Mainly for the difficulties at night (230 doesn’t run after 22:30, there is just tram 15, which runs late at night but stops 20 minutes walking from the University), many students prefer moving to Milan to have more freedom.

If instead, you want to be closer to Politecnico, the Città Studi neighbourhood is full of student accommodations. Loreto and Centrale areas might be cheaper, but they are a bit less safe.

Admission test

You must take an admission test, different from the Medicine & Surgery one, to be admitted to the MEDTEC School. The test is home-based and divided into different sections; you will have a limited time for each part, and you can’t go back once you’ve finished one. It has a duration of 100 minutes, and it comprises 60 questions.

  • Mathematics (20 questions) → 40 minutes
    • +16 points for each correct answer
    • – 4 points for each wrong answer
    • 0 points if the answer is not given
  • Comprehension and Critical Reasoning (10 questions) → 25 minutes
    • + 24 for each correct answer
    • – 6 points for each wrong answer
    • 0 points if the answer is not given
  • Chemistry and physics (10 questions) → 20 minutes
    • +16 points for each correct answer
    • – 4 points for each wrong answer
    • 0 points if the answer is not given
  • Biology (10 questions) → 10 minutes
    • +16 points for each correct answer
    • – 4 points for each wrong answer
    • 0 points if the answer is not given
  • Technical and Scientific Knowledge (10 questions) → 5 minutes
    • +16 points for each correct answer
    • – 4 points for each wrong answer
    • 0 points if the answer is not given

The minimum entry to qualify for enrollment is 400 points.

Two attempts per year are possible, starting from the second last year of high school.

Educational Plan

MEDTEC is divided into courses for 390 ECTS (360 + 30 additional ECTS for the double degree), distributed over 12 semesters. The educational plan aligns with the principle of integrated teaching: from the first year, the interdisciplinary theoretical modules are integrated with practical exercises and simulations.

The lessons, especially in the clinical years, are highly focused on clinical cases, research and engineering aspects. The medicine curriculum focuses on new technologies; the engineering curriculum mainly uses medical examples and applications. Many group projects are required during different courses to encourage team working. Furthermore, professors are very open to hosting students in the hospital, even before clerkships.

The clinical training is performed through alternating activities in the simulation lab, engineering seminars (ab medica, Medtronic, Johnson and Johnson, etc.) and clerkship in the hospital. Mandatory trips to engineering companies are part of the training from the fourth year. At the end of each semester, starting for the third year, there is an evaluation of the clinical training, called OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination), which averages with the Patient Management exam (sixth year, first semester). It may seem challenging, but it’s manageable once you get the hang of it.

Every year you can choose between different elective activities. The choice is quite limited during the first years, but you might find some clerkship opportunities during the clinical years. Apart from activities in the hospital, you might also choose between seminars and cultural activities such as Medicinema (a movie club). By the end of the 6th year, you must achieve eight credits in elective activities (usually 1-4 credits for each activity).

Attendance is mandatory at 75% and is strictly controlled. If you miss more than 25% of the lessons, you won’t be allowed to sit for the exam. Students must scan a dynamic QR the professor projects at the beginning of every lecture.

The first year at MEDTEC

Lectures usually start between the last week of September and the first of October. However, during September, there is the possibility to attend an “Induction week” to catch up on all the premedical knowledge and prepare to start university.

In the first year, the exams are:

  • First semester (at Politecnico di Milano – Città Studi)
    • Fundamental of Experimental Physics (10 credits)
    • Chemistry and Organic Chemistry (6 credits)
    • Mathematics (10 credits)
  • Second Semester (at Hunimed Campus)
    • Regional anatomy and gross neuroanatomy (8 credits)
    • Cell Physiology and Biochemistry I (7 credits)
    • Professionalism, Bioethics and History of Medicine (4 credits)
    • Professionalizing Activities (1 credit)
  • Annual
    • Cell Biology, Embryology and Histology

The schedules at Politecnico di Milano are fixed, with an average of 7 hours per day. It highly varies depending on the weeks, it is lighter (6-7 hours per day) during the first three years, but it gets very tough (8 hours per day, sometimes more) from the fourth year. To get a better idea, you can directly check the online timetable.

Extracurricular events

  • Internships in the laboratory and the hospital that the student can independently apply to a doctor or a researcher.
  • The Students Events Committee (SEC) organises football, volleyball and chess tournaments, padel tournaments, parties, galas and workshops.
  • Events organised by Politecnico of Milano are trips, seminars, sports events, tournaments, etc.
  • USMLE preparation courses to prepare for the US medical habilitation exam.
  • Language courses include English, Italian, Spanish, French and German.

Pros and cons of MEDTEC

Pros:

  • You get two degrees, one in Biomedical Engineering and one in Medicine and Surgery. After graduation, you can register for the Postgraduate test in Italy for the Medicine Degree or to masters for the Biomedical Engineering;
  • The English degree is equivalent to the Italian one; they are equally recognised in Italy and the EU. For non-EU countries, it is necessary to check individual regulations;
  • The university offers preparation courses for USMLE to continue studying and working in the USA;
  • You are going to study in a highly international environment, as there are many international students and professors;
  • The university has lovely green areas with tables where to eat and study when it’s sunny and warm;
  • You will have access to two campuses, the Politecnico and the Humanitas, with many interesting extracurricular seminars and activities;
  • You are very close to the hospital, so you can just go there after lessons during the clinical years;
  • It is a small environment, you find everything and everyone you need, even the Student Office, without having to book impossible dates or writing emails nobody will answer;
  • Very dynamic and innovative environment, Hunimed highly focuses on practice and the Simulation Centre.

Cons:

  • Rozzano is not directly connected by the subway to Milan and the bus (230) is often very crowded. Furthermore, there are not many places to go apart from the library if you have time between classes;
  • Rozzano and Città Studi are pretty far away from each other;
  • Humanitas is a new university, so sometimes it may lack the experience of a more consolidated university (e.g. Erasmus);
  • High fees
  • Medical terminology in Italian and English is similar but not identical: this implies that once in the ward during clerkships, it’s crucial to learn also the medical expressions in Italian to communicate better with patients and doctors;
  • Engineering Professors expect a lot;
  • More challenging than regular medicine: in the clinical years, you are in University 8-18 almost daily.

Lunch and libraries

At Politecnico, the canteen could be better, but there are some restaurants and food stands in the area if you want to vary. There are also a few microwaves in different buildings if you want to bring your food from home. There is usually quite a line for the microwaves and the canteen, but there is typically enough time to wait and eat.

At Humanitas, the school canteen is pretty cheap; the menu for students comprises the first course, second course and dessert, costing 4.50€. There is usually a pasta, soup or rice option as a main course, and as a second course, you can have meat, fish or vegetarian options, with even a grill (the best choice for meat and fish). There is also the possibility of asking for a kebab or pizza menu.

Alternatively, there is the bar (for students, the menu with a sandwich, water, snacks and coffee costs 4.50€) and a bistro (in residence).

If instead, you want to eat your meal, there are four microwaves where you can heat your food, and you can eat in the common study/lunch areas.

Both campuses also have a library and study rooms. The library is usually packed, but some common study/lunch areas are scattered in the different buildings. You might also book a room for study groups or projects in Humanitas.

Studying abroad

There are two main options:

  • Erasmus: it still needs to be better implemented with very few scholarships available, but they are slowly improving it. Options are minimal, mainly for clerkships: Spain (Madrid and Barcellona), France or Poland. However, you might get your connections and submit to other places.
  • Travel Grant: Humanitas University offers these scholarships to finance thesis, research or internship projects abroad that can be requested from the 2nd year of the course. You can apply with your project, so they are more flexible.

As MEDTEC is a hybrid course, Erasmus and travel grants are mainly for clerkship and research, yet to be for lessons.

You can find more information at this link: International Mobility Medicine – Hunimed.

Student Office

The Student Office is located in building A in Humanitas, next to the main entrance of the University.

It is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9.00 am to 12.30 pm and Tuesday and Thursday from 2.00 pm to 5.00 pm.

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: +39 0282243777

Enrollment

You first must take the MEDTEC admission test. There are two calls, one for EU and another for non-EU students.

After the publication of the official ranking, if your status is “admitted” or “conditionally admitted”, you have to complete the profile and pay the first tuition instalment (€ 4156), which is not refundable, on MyPORTAL.

Requirements for EU students:

  • Citizens of Italy or European Union member states, even if together citizenship not belonging to the EU;
  • Citizens of Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland or the Republic of San Marino;
  • Non-EU citizens holding a residence permit in Italy for employment or self-employment, for family reasons, political asylum, an asylum for humanitarian or religious reasons, or study reasons if regularly enrolled in another Degree Course and permanently residing in Italy for at least one year;
  • Non-EU citizens legally resident in Italy for at least one year in possession of a Secondary School Diploma obtained in Italy;
  • Non-EU citizens, residents anywhere who hold diplomas from Italian schools abroad or foreign or international schools having bilateral agreements or special regulations for the recognition of qualifications and who satisfy the general conditions required to be admitted to study in Italy;
  • Refugees;
  • Diplomatic personnel accredited to International Organizations in Italy, Italian State, Vatican State and their dependent family member.

Requirements for Non-EU students:

  • Not resident in Italy, nor holding Italian or European citizenship;
  • Possession of a secondary school (High School) diploma or attending the last year and graduating in 2023 or attending the second-last year and graduating in 2024;
  • A High School diploma will be considered valid after at least 12 years of schooling and accompanied by the Declaration of Value (issued by the Italian diplomatic authorities).

For more information, you can visit Admissions – MEDTEC.

Transferring

Transferring is very difficult since there is no University with the same curriculum. Some exams might be recognised if you are coming from a Medicine and Surgery or Engineering degree.

Fees and Scholarships

The tuition for EU students is based on the income category (ISEP score), ranging from 10.000 to 20.000 euros. Seven scholarships are available for EU students each year.

For Non-EU students, the fee is 20000 euros and four scholarships worth 16.000 euros are available yearly.

There are different types of scholarships; some might be partial, others total, some are income-based and others just merit-based.

To be eligible for a Scholarship, you must:

  • Have obtained an average of the third and fourth year of secondary school marks of 7,5/10 or more;
  • Have been classified within the first 30 positions in the entry test ranking (especially for merit-based);
  • Be classified within the top 130 positions if they compete for the Alfieri del Lavoro scholarships and the Natural Sciences Olympics.

Conditions might change for every single scholarship.

Furthermore, to keep the scholarship, you must:

  • Maintain an average of 27/30 weighted by credit awarded (GPA);
  • Complete a minimum annual number of University credits (CFU).

Otherwise, you might ask for a loan. Banca Intesa and Humanitas University have an agreement to offer an annual loan of 7000 euros (Per Merito Loans) to students having the following prerequisites:

  • Italian Citizenship and Residency
  • Not holding any scholarship
  • Must have completed the first year of Medicine with at least 50 credits
  • A weighted average grade of at least 26/30.

All the information regarding fees, scholarships and loans can be found here.

Accommodations – Humanitas

Mario Luzzato Student House (Campus Humanitas University) is located on the University campus next to the Educational Center and the Research Center. It has recently opened and offers 240 beds, fully furnished apartments with single and double rooms, a bathroom, a shared living room, and a kitchen. Weekly cleaning service and 24h reception is included.

In the common spaces, there are:

  • Study spaces and library;
  • Internal gym, outdoor sports areas and gardens;
  • Multimedia and TV rooms;
  • Caffè, terrace and shared kitchens;
  • Parking;
  • Laundry rooms;
  • Amazon Lockers.

The different types of accommodations are:

  • Double room in shared flat € 8.000
  • Single room with shared kitchen € 9.900
  • Single room in shared flat € 10.900
  • Superior single room (double room with double bed in shared apartment) € 13.500
  • Suite (two-room apartment for exclusive use)  € 15.000

Also, Politecnico has several accommodations; you can have more information here.

Conclusion

MEDTEC is a very dynamic course focusing on innovation, technologies, and research. It is the place to go beyond the simple clinical part and deepen into technologies and research. Just be smart and ask the professors so that you’ll manage to do incredible things!

Most importantly, be aware that it will be challenging and you won’t have much free time.

We hope this article helped you choose and wish you good luck with what’s coming!

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