In today’s age, medical science has become one of the most popular disciplines to pursue, and promises a bright career. Many aspiring individuals are interested in exploring this field and serving the society at large. With technological innovations and advanced approaches making their way into every domain, medical science is also stepping up and embracing positive transformations. The leading educational institutes catering to the medical sciences discipline are leaving no stones unturned to provide students with quality curricular and co-curricular facilities, while paving the pathway to a promising career.
Established in 2006, Rocky Vista University (RVU) is the United States’ first private, for-profit health sciences university to offer a professional medical degree since 1910. As a for-profit organization, RVU provides significant benefits for the state of Utah without requiring direct, tax-based support.
RVU operates as an independent, privately-funded organization with a Board of Trustees that administers oversight of the operations, administration, education, and policy of the university. The university’s first campus is situated at Colorado owing to the large number of counties designated as medically underserved areas, with only one other medical school to serve the state. Similarly, RVU chose Utah for its second campus because of the shortage of primary care physicians in the state.
RVU’s Utah campus is located on 104,000 square feet, with the same state-of-the-art technology and features as the Colorado campus. Likewise, it does not rely on state or local tax support, but instead, provides significant contributions to the area: in terms of paying taxes, providing jobs to the community, and keeping Utahans in their home state to pursue their medical education.
Emphasis ofoṇ Academic Excellence
RVU focuses on providing students with the best educational facilities. Accordingly, it follows six different tracks.
Academic Medicine and Leadership: The Academic Medicine and Leadership Track is for the students interested in receiving specialized training in various areas of academics and leadership development. Students in this specialty track learn about various multi-faceted topics in academics, medical education, organized medicine, health policy, and leadership development. They are trained in skills to be an effective public speaker, educator, and physician leader.
Digital Health: The Digital Health Track advances current undergraduate medical education by enabling and equipping its students with the ability to effectively solve complex health care challenges through the utilization of technology in the ever-evolving field of medicine. This track incorporates training in artificial intelligence, remote monitoring, ethics in use and application of technology, clinical informatics, telemedicine and telehealth, and much more.
Global Medicine: The Global Medicine Track is for those students who have a strong desire to serve in an international capacity, whether employed or as a volunteer. This track provides survey, exposure, and clinical education surrounding the multiple aspects of global medicine and public health.
Long Term Care (UT campus only): The Long Term Care Medicine Track is a course which will provide students with specialized training and experience in longitudinal medical care. Students in this specialty track will learn various, multi-faceted topics in continuity of Post-Acute, Long-Term Care, End-of Life Care, and Palliative and Hospice Care.
Physician-Scientist (CO campus only): The Physician-Scientist Track is designed to provide curricular training to qualified and interested students and will enhance their opportunities to pursue careers in academic medicine.
Rural and Wilderness Medicine: The goals of the Rural and Wilderness Medicine Track are to identify and foster student interest in eventual medical practice in rural settings. In addition to the unique educational opportunities, there are significant obligations associated with the track in the first 1.5 years, as well as in the clinical years of training.
Urban Underserved Medicine (CO campus only): This two-semester enrichment track provides RVUCOM students with the knowledge, understanding, training, and experience to work effectively with underserved populations. Students will be able to engage in the community-based health needs of specific populations living in Denver, Colorado, and provide an extremely needed service. This track will compliment other RVU programs providing students the opportunity to collaborate with allied health fields such as nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and patient navigators in an organized setting.
Additionally, the university offers special programs namely Military Medicine Enrichment Pathway and International Externships.
RVU marches ahead towards attaining academic and career excellence under the perceptive leadership of two renowned educationists. They are Clinton E. Adams, DO, FACHE, President and CEO of Rocky Vista University and Thomas N. Told, DO, FACOFP dist., Dean of RVUCOM.
Mr. Clinton is a board-certified physician in anesthesiology and family medicine. He joined RVU after a distinguished thirty-year career in the United States Navy and numerous leadership roles in osteopathic medical education. While serving in the military, he attained the rank of Rear Admiral and was Command Surgeon for the United States Fleet Forces Command.
Dr. Told came to the university with 35 years of experience operating a rural family practice and multispecialty clinic in Craig, Colorado. He is the past President of the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians (ACOFP) and one of the authors of the first standards for the ACOFP’s Rural Family Medicine Track.
Career Development and Extra-Curricular Activities
Apart from excellent education, the university offers a wide range of activities including a variety of student organizations where students can pursue their interests in community service, career development, and mentoring.
There are many student-led clubs to explore medical specialties, ethics, the business of healthcare, diversity, and other topics that will be necessary to the students’ future as physicians. There is also a robust career advising program for students.
Additionally, the RVU Alumni Association provides a number of scholarships for students and also helps defray cost of attending conferences to present their research.
The Achievement Saga
The university has always endeavored towards achieving the best and providing students with excellent academic, infrastructural, and career development opportunities. The RVU Alumni Association provides a number of scholarships for students and also helps defray cost of attending conferences to present their research.
Additionally, RVU has also made numerous accomplishments throughout its illustrious journey. These have been mentioned below:
• It is the recipient of AOA’s Strategic Team Award and Recognition (STAR) in 2018
• The university is the Winner of Military Training Technology’s 2015 Best Program award
• It was Ranked as the top innovator in medicine for 2014 by 5280 Magazine
• It was ranked as one of the ten least expensive medical schools by U.S. News & World Report
• The school has been designated as a Top 10 Military Friendly® School
• RVU has regional accreditation from Higher Learning Commission (HLC)