Dean Rappley speaks about our presence in 8 communities and the strength we bring as a cohesive voice among medical schools of the nation, creating the best opportunities to educate students, generating new knowledge through research, and generating opportunities for the people of the state of Michigan through careers and good health.
To be fair, our 3rd and 4th year students have been utilizing their brand new building since we moved in, but we’re still super excited to see our first and second year students!
On August 29, a symbolic beginning of the four-year journey into the medical profession took place. It is called the White Coat Ceremony. Dean Marsha D. Rappley, M.D. formally welcomed 200 first-year medical students to the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. Of these students, 100 will attend classes in Grand Rapids at the Secchia Center and 100 will attend classes on the MSU campus in East Lansing.
*Full credit to the students who created this video, including Brian Fung who wrote, directed, produced and edited it. Check out the YouTube page for a list of students, faculty, and staff involved in its creation.
The challenge is to get the attention of candidates who sometimes have preconceived notions about the Michigan economy or life in Grand Rapids, says Dr. Marsha D. Rappley, dean of the college. But, like Fazleabas, “once they come, they want to come back,” she says.
“There is an opportunity to do something here that, quite frankly, is not being done many other places in the country,” says Leach, 56, an Alma College alum. “It’s really an opportunity to do something from the ground level. That message of vision is the same vision that I was able to communicate to Dr. Risinger and Dr. Fazleabas, and both of them were also visionaries in that way.”
So with the physical infrastructure built, the job, as Fazleabas says, is “to build a nucleus of excellent scientists that are going to attract others” to continue developing a world-class health care setting.
Fazleabas followed Leach to MSU and now some of his researchers from Chicago are coming to join him. He also just hired a Chinese researcher who had been working in Sweden. Vocation aside, what the incoming professionals are finding is that the culture of Grand Rapids is world-class in its own right. Among the recruits is an avid golfer who most certainly finds this area green.
“The bottom line is this community has all of the arts and entertainment that my wife and I need,” Leach says. “It has a tremendous sense of community that’s palpable. It’s very refreshing.”
When it comes to “social mission” for producing doctors who are minorities, practice primary care and work in underserved areas, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine ranks among the top medical schools in the country according to a new national study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Of the 141 medical schools in the study, MSU College of Human Medicine received an overall Social Mission rank of 6th and a rank of 7th for underrepresented minorities in its student population.
“Our community-focused college is based on a social mission,” said Marsha D. Rappley, MD, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. “We respond to the needs of the medically underserved, whether it is training primary care doctors, providing students clinical experience with underserved populations or offering medical school admission opportunities to students who wish to practice in underserved areas of medicine.”
While MSU ranked high in the study, researchers concluded that medical schools vary substantially in their contribution to the social mission of medical education. Traditional assessments of medical schools often value research funding, student entrance test scores and subjective assessments over actual educational output of each school, particularly regarding the number of graduates who enter primary care, practice in underserved areas and are underrepresented minorities.
“This is the first published journal study that measures the contributions made by community-focused medical schools like MSU,” added Dean Rappley. “It is an honor and a privilege to be a social mission leader among U.S. medical schools.”
Click on the link which will take you to the Secchia Center website. From there, select “time lapse” at the top of your screen. See what took just over two years to build in a matter of moments. Pretty cool!
As a result of the enormous support of the community, we have had the opportunity to meet some amazing people. This is the testimonial of Al, Laurie and Jamie Forte about why they chose to support the Secchia Center. The stories of our donors are incredible so we wanted to share one with you. We may even share more in the blogs to come…
“We are a family of passionate fans - passionate about Grand Rapids, and also about Michigan State University. We have a deep and rich connection to Michigan State University that stretches over three generations, starting with Al’s father, then Al himself, and now our daughter Jamie. We are all thrilled to support the Secchia Center because it will benefit an organization and a place we love.
Our philanthropic interests revolve around feeding, clothing and educating people. When we consider a giving opportunity, we look at how well it fits with our interests as well as how the funds will be used. Stewardship is very important to us. As a family we are excited about giving, because we both grew up in families that did not have the means to be philanthropic. Our relationship with MSU, and our trust in its leadership, gave us the confidence to give what was for us a very substantial gift, because we knew it would be well used to continue changing lives long after we are gone.
Our family made this decision together, and we are more excited about this gift than any other gift we have ever made. It is awe-inspiring to think that we are leaving an indelible mark on Grand Rapids through our contribution. We love this community, and we know the Secchia Center will enrich Grand Rapids by creating opportunity and economic growth. We are inspired by the leaders of West Michigan, who worked tirelessly to bring the Secchia Center dream to life. We can’t wait to see this building open and then watch the tidal wave of change that will sweep over Grand Rapids because of it!”