|Liberty University's Center for Medical and Health Sciences|
Liberty University Osteopathic School of Medicine has announced that it has filled its inaugural class. The 162 members will officially begin their orientation to the medical school and the Liberty community on Wednesday, July 30, with courses commencing on Monday, Aug. 4. The first students are set to earn their Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degrees in Spring 2018.
The Office of Admissions received an impressive number of applications from qualified candidates across the country. About 3,500 applications were reviewed, and nearly 500 prospective students were interviewed. Admissions staff assessed each applicant’s educational history, performance, and professional background, seeking students who would advance the mission and vision of the medical school and the university.
“Filling the inaugural class is an amazing accomplishment by the grace of God,” said Jacqueline Mendez, associate director of admissions for the medical school. “There is no doubt that the faculty and staff will be impressed with the servant’s attitude, love, desire, and persistence of these new student doctors.”
The inaugural class features a median MCAT score of 25 and a median GPA of 3.5. It represents 30 universities, 25 states, and two countries, with 35 percent of its students from Virginia or an adjacent state. The class is 52 percent male and 48 percent female.
Ronnie B. Martin, D.O., dean, said more than 50 percent of the applicants who were offered admission decided to come to Liberty.
“In launching the first year of a new medical school, it is expected that only 30-40 percent of the students who are offered admission will accept — a level you would anticipate when competing for quality students with other established institutions,” he said. “As a new medical school, we had no track record or reputation that students could depend on to predict their potential for professional success. The fact that more than 50 percent chose Liberty is a blessing and shows the high regard that people across the country have for the university.”
Dr. Martin also said the results show that Liberty’s medical school was the top choice for a large majority of the inaugural class, many of which could have attended a wide variety of quality institutions based on their credentials and life experiences.
“We know for a fact that many of our students were offered acceptance at other colleges both in and out of the state,” he said. “We are honored that they have placed their faith and futures with us here at Liberty. It is both an obligation and an opportunity that we take seriously.”
Dr. Martin added that the caliber of the inaugural class is also a reflection of the quality of the medical school’s employees.
“My faculty and staff made the difference in the selection process for many of our incoming students, and I am blessed, as well as thankful, to work with this group of professionals. The future is exciting.”
The program will be housed in the new Center for Medical and Health Sciences. The $40 million building contains a comprehensive, state-of-the-art Center for Standardized Patient and Simulation that allows for hands-on training through simulation and standardized patient education, including a 5,300-square-foot Anatomy Lab and a 5,000-square-foot Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) Lab. A dedication is being planned for August.
The Office of Admissions will host an open house for pre-medical advisors throughout the region at the Center for Medical and Health Sciences on July 10. Another open house will be held early in the fall for Liberty advisors as well as interested students from the Lynchburg and Southern Virginia area.