College of Medicine awaits go ahead to recruit

The Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine received preliminary accreditation last Wednesday, making a vote for initiation into the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) the last hurdle to opening its doors for student recruitment.

Founding Dean John Tomkowiak said the college will be voted into the AAMC this Friday and starting Monday, aspiring students should look on the college’s website daily for applications.

“We will accept 60 students initially, which for the record is much larger than other medical colleges across the country,” said Kenneth Roberts, vice dean for academic and community partnerships, and liaison to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, the college’s accreditation agency.

The college will work with 19 clinical partners, including large hospitals, rural hospitals and an array of clinics across varying communities to ensure proper training for its students. Roberts said the college plans to create a curriculum across WSU’s campuses to teach students to help underprivileged people.

“Our mission is to prepare students to meet the triple aim of health care,” Tomkowiak said, “which is to provide more access, better quality care at lower cost, all the while making sure that they themselves live a healthier life.”

Provisional accreditation comes after the college enrolls its initial class, allowing the class to move forward into its third and fourth year. During the process leading to preliminary accreditation, the leadership board repeatedly revisited the potential provisional accreditation.

“We have a continuous quality accreditation model at the college,” Tomkowiak said. “Even while we were still preparing for preliminary we had begun the work for preparing for provisional. It’s quite an extensive process and it will take us a long time to get all the pieces in place.”

After submitting its application for accreditation to the liaison committee on Dec. 1, the college underwent 11 months of processing to help provide in-state medical education to more Washington state residents.

Terren Roloff, WSU-Spokane communications and public affairs director, noted how having a second medical school in the state, in addition to the University of Washington, will benefit students.

“Several hundred Washington students each year were going out of state for medical school,” she said, “reducing the chances they would come back to practice, and costing them much more in tuition than an in-state school.”