The Bigger Picture

Three COMs Welcome Inaugural Classes

Three colleges have recently opened their doors to welcome their inaugural classes of 2017. The schools are Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine (ARCOM), Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine – Southern Utah (RVUCOM-SU) and the University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine (UIWSOM). They comprise the most recent openings of the 48 locations of the 33 colleges of osteopathic medicine in 31 states across the nation. Read more about each college below:

Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine

082417_ARCOM_OpeningARCOM opened on Monday, July 31, 2017, at Chaffee Crossing with the goal of fulfilling a mission of serving the underserved.

Students, faculty, staff, and community leaders gathered in one of the school’s lecture halls to celebrate as the countdown clock hit zero, officially kicking off the first day of medical school. The inaugural class of 150 students will begin classes in the 102,000 square foot, state-of-the-art building.

“This is a historic event. These students are here because they believe in the mission” said President and CEO Kyle Parker, JD.

ARCOM is the first installment of the Arkansas Colleges of Health Education. The College of Health Sciences is expected to open by 2020.

The Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine (ARCOM) held its first orientation on July 31, 2017, for its inaugural class of 162 medical students. Classes began on August 3. ARCOM is the second osteopathic medical school in state of Arkansas.

Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine - Southern Utah

082417_RVUCOM_OpeningAfter 16 months of construction, Rocky Vista University (RVU) has officially opened its new campus in Ivins, Utah: Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine – Southern Utah (RVUCOM-SU). As the first osteopathic medical school in Utah, this is a significant achievement and will bring more physicians to the area in the future.

On July 14, a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony was held to celebrate the completion of the RVUCOM-SU building, attended by RVU’s Board of Trustees, the Executive Advisory Council, faculty and staff from both campuses, contractors, and key officials who have been instrumental to the success of this project.

Building an osteopathic medical school in Utah has been a long-time goal of Thomas N. Told, DO, Dean of RVUCOM: “I’m a native Utahan and spent much of my life exploring the Capitol Reef country in Wayne County. As a young boy, I promised myself I’d become a country doctor and return one day to help the small towns of Utah find and keep their doctors, since so many students must leave the state to become physicians.”

Despite being among the fastest growing states in the country, Utah is facing a large shortage of physicians with 58.4 primary care physicians per 100,000 people; the national average is 79.4 physicians per 100,000 people. “With the completion of RVUCOM-SU, many of Utah’s brightest will now be able to remain in their home state for their medical education—and eventually practice medicine here, as well,” said Dr. Told.

The Inaugural Class of 2021, comprised of 135 students, began their medical education on July 24. These students came to RVUCOM-SU from 24 different states, with 55 percent hailing from Utah and 48 percent having previously graduated from a Utah-based university. Read the press release and watch the ribbon cutting video.

University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine

082417_UIWSOM-grandopeningAmidst great fanfare and at least 500 guests, joining the celebration, the University of the Incarnate Word officially opened its School of Osteopathic Medicine (UIWSOM).

“What a blessing it has been to be part of the amazing UIW team which has built this School of Osteopathic Medicine and is welcoming our inaugural class of students next Monday. We are grateful to be situated in this historic and vibrant community, and look forward to working with our many partners and positively impacting the health of the people by in this region now and in the years to come,” said Robyn Phillips-Madson, DO, Dean of UIWSOM.

UIWSOM, located at 2510 Kennedy Circle, is on the Brooks campus (formerly referred to as Brooks City Base) and is the anchor of the area’s public-private revitalization project. The 155,000 sq. foot facility is home to 45 faculty, 40 professional staff, and 150 students comprising the School of Medicine’s inaugural class.