PCOM Admissions Leader’s Lifelong Connection to the College
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Birthplace to Workplace: PCOM Admissions Leader’s Lifelong Connection to the College and Its Students 
Black History Month

February 20, 2024

John Hill, Assistant Director of Admissions of PCOMThere are certain paths in life that some people are simply called to follow.

In the case of Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine’s (PCOM) Assistant Director of Admissions John Hill, you might even say his path is one he was born to follow.

“I was actually born at PCOM,” he said.

Referring to the former City Avenue Hospital that for many years served as a clinical teaching site for PCOM students before being demolished in 2002, Hill was raised in the Wynnefield section of Philadelphia, less than two miles from PCOM.

He hasn’t strayed far from where it all began.

“I was born and raised in this area,” he said, “so I’ve always known PCOM.”

Attending smaller schools for most of his primary and secondary education, Hill’s world grew when he was accepted at Kutztown University of Pennsylvania in Berks County. The first in his family to graduate college, he earned a degree in Communication Studies in 2016. Post-college life, he determined early on, would find him either in front of a camera or in the halls of academia.

“I always knew I either wanted to be a news anchor or go into higher education,” he said. “I just didn’t know what that would look like or what my path would be.”

While he considered his options, Hill started working in 2017 as a temporary employee in the Office of Admissions. His ability to engage and connect with students didn’t go unnoticed. “They loved how I interacted with the students and the work I was doing,” he said. “When they asked if I was interested in a full-time job, I said ‘Absolutely!’”

He has since been promoted several times and now serves in an assistant director role. Reflecting on what motivates him, Hill credits the PCOM students he sees and interacts with on a daily basis. “The students are what keeps me going,” he said. “I love them and what they’re trying to accomplish, in whatever program or concentration they’re in.”

Hill is also an advisor for PCOM’s chapter of Brothers in Medicine, a student-led organization designed to bridge the gap between medical professionals and the Black community. He recognizes the importance of being a visible reminder that support and encouragement are available when students need it.

“Being a black male, representation is key in our community,” he said. “When I was looking at colleges, I saw a Black recruiter. Seeing someone who looked just like me, I said to myself, ‘I think I can make a difference in that way.’”

As an admissions professional, Hill typically sees students before they’ve matriculated, though he doesn’t lose sight of the role he can play once they’re on campus.

“Yes, they’ve gotten in, but that’s just step one,” he said. “What resources are we providing them so they can stay here and finish? I want to be one of those resources. That’s really rewarding for me.”

From February 1 to February 29, PCOM joins others around the country in observing Black History Month. This important celebration honors the histories, cultures and contributions of those who identify as Black or African American. At PCOM, we recognize our faculty, students and staff who identify as such and will highlight their stories throughout the month.

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  • About Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

    For the past 125 years, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) has trained thousands of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms. PCOM, a private, not-for-profit accredited institution of higher education, operates three campuses (PCOM, PCOM Georgia and PCOM South Georgia) and offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, educational psychology, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy, and school psychology. The college also offers graduate degrees in applied behavior analysis, applied positive psychology, biomedical sciences, forensic medicine, medical laboratory science, mental health counseling, physician assistant studies, and school psychology. PCOM students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care to medically underserved populations. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 215-871-6100.

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