WMU medical school granted full accreditation

Contact: Laura Eller
WMU Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine Building.

WMU Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine Building on the W.E. Upjohn M.D. Campus

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—In the final step of a journey that began some seven years ago, the Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine has been granted full accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.

LCME, the national accrediting body for educational programs leading to the M.D. degree, granted the medical school full accreditation for a five-year period during its Feb. 13 meeting. Five years is the maximum possible for a new school receiving its initial full accreditation.

Dr. Hal B. Jenson, the founding dean of WMed, shared the news with the medical school's Board of Directors, faculty, residents, staff and students, and expressed his appreciation for the work of numerous stakeholders that made the important milestone for the medical school possible.

"The granting of full accreditation by the LCME is a key step in our journey as an institution and represents a ringing confirmation that the M.D. degree program at WMed is sound and meets nationally accepted standards of educational quality," Jenson said. "We all should be very gratified with this accomplishment.

"Together, we make WMed an outstanding place to learn, teach, care for patients, work, and innovate."

WMed began preparing for LCME accreditation in 2011 as the medical school was still in the planning stages. In 2012, the LCME granted preliminary accreditation to WMed, which allowed for the continuation of development efforts as well as student recruitment and the acceptance of applications for the medical school's Class of 2018 and future classes.

More recently, the medical school was granted provisional accreditation from the LCME in June 2016.

The process for full accreditation included the submission in July 2017 of more than 2,800 pages of required documentation to the LCME. In October, the medical school hosted a comprehensive, three-day survey visit.

Dr. Jenson said he was very appreciative of the more than 125 faculty, residents, staff, and medical students who met with a survey team from the LCME during their visit in October. He also said he was thankful for the work of numerous people at WMed who have been a part of developing, implementing, and improving the medical school curriculum, processes, and policies over the last several years to ensure the institution was accreditation-ready.

"This news represents an achievement that has been part of our planning since the earliest days of the medical school's development," said Michele Serbenski, associate dean for planning and performance excellence. "It is an affirmation of our efforts, that we as an institution have done the right things in our work toward a bright future for the medical school and our faculty, staff, and learners."

LCME Accreditation

Two WMed students work on a patient simulator.Accreditation by the LCME, which is a peer-review process, determines whether a school's medical education program meets established standards. The process also helps identify opportunities to improve an institution and its programs.

Additionally, most state licensing boards require that U.S. medical schools granting the M.D. degree be accredited by the LCME as a condition of licensure of the school's graduates. U.S. medical schools also must have LCME accreditation to ensure that their students can take the United States Medical Licensing Examination. Graduates of LCME-accredited schools are eligible for residency programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.

Community Open House

On Saturday, May 12, the medical school will host a Community Open House from 1 to 3 p.m. at the W.E. Upjohn M.D. Campus to honor of the Class of 2018. The next day, Sunday, May 13, the Class of 2018 will graduate from WMed during a ceremony at Miller Auditorium that will be open to the public.

Match Day

On Friday, March 16, Match Day for members of the medical school's inaugural Class of 2018 will be held at the Bernhard Center on WMU's main campus. Match Day is a time-honored event during which medical students learn where they will spend the next three or more years in residency training. It is anticipated that many graduating students will match to the residency programs at the medical school and continue their careers here.

About the WMU Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine

Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine is a collaboration of Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo's two teaching hospitals, Borgess Health and Bronson Healthcare. Planning for the new medical school began in 2008 and WMed was granted full accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education in 2018 and candidate status by the Higher Learning Commission in 2016. The school, which welcomed its inaugural class in August 2014, is a private 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation supported by private gifts, clinical revenue, research activity, tuition from students, and endowment income.

The home of the new medical school includes the WMU Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine Clinics, a modern 60,000-square-foot clinical building on the Oakland Drive Campus, and a 350,000-square-foot educational building in downtown Kalamazoo that was donated by MPI Research. Located on the new W.E. Upjohn M.D. Campus, the educational building underwent a $68 million renovation and expansion project and opened in June 2014. An additional $10 million renovation of two floors for laboratory research was completed in early 2016.

For more information, contact Laura Eller at (269) 337-4513 or laura.eller@med.wmich.edu.

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