As the members of Central Michigan University's College of Medicine Class of 2022 slipped on their white coats for the first time on Aug. 3, they became united in spirit with more than 550 former first-year students in embracing the college's mission to serve the underserved.
The annual ceremony that marks the beginning of a student's journey into practicing medicine comes at an important time for the Central Michigan University college, said Dean George Kikano in his remarks to the new students gathered at Plachta Auditorium in Warriner Hall.
He said it is a time when the college's undergraduate and graduate medical education programs are continuing to innovate and grow; when the college recently received full accreditation from the Liaison Committee for Medical Education; and when 100 percent of its graduates have placed in residencies — 10 students in CMU's residency program in Saginaw, 54 percent in Michigan and 75 percent in primary care.
"Now, more than ever, we are delivering on our mission to train, to treat and to lead in fulfilling our mission and improve the future of health care in Michigan," he said.
The College of Medicine selected this year's class from a record 7,286 applicants from Michigan and 11 other states. That continues the yearly record-breaking numbers of applicants that began with the first class of 64 in 2013. Last year's applicants totaled 5,443.
Students in CMU's College of Medicine spend their first two years of study on CMU's main campus in Mount Pleasant.
Third- and fourth-year medical students complete six-month Comprehensive Community Clerkships at multiple sites throughout the state and required hospital clerkships at Covenant HealthCare and St. Mary's of Michigan in Saginaw and other CMU-affiliated hospitals. Student and resident training in Saginaw is anchored at a state-of-the-art $25 million, 46,000-square-foot College of Medicine educational facility.
The College of Medicine — established in 2009 — has a mission to improve access to high-quality health care in Michigan emphasizing rural and medically underserved regions and to address an anticipated shortage of 4,000 to 6,000 physicians in Michigan by 2020.