Fort Worth Business Press
FORT WORTH, Texas (January 12, 2021) – After a successful collaboration that resulted in the creation of one of the nation’s newest allopathic medical schools, Texas Christian University and the University of North Texas Health Science Center, will advance the school to its next chapter by transitioning its governance solely to its degree-granting institution, TCU.
The TCU and UNTHSC School of Medicine was announced in 2015 with the vision of becoming an innovative medical school that would contribute to Fort Worth’s growing bioscience sector.
With the support of community leaders, philanthropists and foundations, the School of Medicine was launched and has grown to become a home for talented medical students and a pioneering resource in a rapidly expanding regional health care landscape.
The first class of students began in July 2019 and will graduate in 2023. The School of Medicine currently is recruiting its fourth class who will begin in July 2022.
“This is an exciting and transformational medical school with remarkable students,” said TCU Chancellor Victor J. Boschini Jr. “We are grateful to UNTHSC for their collaboration and for all of the hard work and dedication needed to get this school launched successfully. Our graduates will be Empathetic Scholars® and will benefit from the vision of both schools for years to come.”
The school will now operate as the TCU School of Medicine. Classes will continue on both the TCU and UNTHSC campuses and will eventually transition to new space. With students as the top priority, the academic mission will continue without disruption.
While the school was formed as a collaboration, TCU has always been identified as the governing university for the School of Medicine and all faculty have TCU faculty appointments.
We are extraordinarily proud of what has been achieved on behalf of our community with this transformative medical school,” said Teresa Dahlberg, TCU Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. “The TCU School of Medicine will continue to build upon the innovative curriculum and rigorous clinical training that defines this program. We are fortunate to have some of the most talented medical students and faculty in the country, living and learning in our community. Our students’ academic progression and experience remains our top priority and we are thrilled to continue our forward momentum.”
The School of Medicine is future focused with an emphasis on inspiring students to embrace the future advances in medicine and to be prepared for the rapidly changing health care arena.
“Our School of Medicine was built on innovation and flexibility. These concepts remain essential as we forge our new path to the future,” said Stuart D. Flynn, M.D., Founding Dean of the School of Medicine. “Innovation means that we are constantly looking at new ways of doing things and finding creative solutions to challenges. We have the opportunity to model these changes with a positive spirit and enthusiasm for the possibilities that arise.”
The medical school was created with an innovative curriculum that focuses on developing Empathetic Scholars® and future physicians who are able to walk in a patient’s shoes. This forward approach to medical education includes flipped classrooms without lectures and partnering students with physicians from their first day in medical school.
This novel approach gives students more time to embrace and study the major drivers in the future of medicine, including artificial intelligence, genomics, and technology monitoring patient health and disease. Each student also does a four-year Scholarly, Pursuit & Thesis research project on a topic of their own choice to promote life-long inquiry and learning.
The TCU and UNTHSC School of Medicine received preliminary accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) in 2018. In February 2021 a team of accreditors from the LCME met with senior leadership, faculty and students during a virtual site visit before making their Provisional Accreditation decision. In mid-June 2021 the LCME voted to grant Provisional Accreditation to the innovative medical school bringing us one step closer to full accreditation.
The School of Medicine has also launched graduate medical education collaborations with JPS Health Network, Baylor Scott & White All Saints Medical Center Fort Worth and Texas Health Resources which will remain in place. Those important partnerships will improve health and the delivery of care in North Texas as well as help address the increasing physician shortage in Fort Worth and beyond.