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University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine

Region: Maine Country: USA

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM) prepares students to become osteopathic physicians. About two-thirds of recent graduates have pursued careers in primary care. Graduates receive the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree.

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine was founded in 1978 by the New England Osteopathic Foundation. The College that year consisted of a newly revamped Stella Maris Hall, 36 first-year students, and 12 faculty members. Today COM has some of the best medical education facilities in the nation with the Harold Alfond Center for Health Sciences, nearly 500 students and more than 250 faculty members. In addition, COM has been recognized for excellence in primary care, geriatric education, and osteopathic manipulative medicine.

In 1972, a group of New England osteopathic physicians met informally to discuss their concern about the aging population of osteopathic physicians in the New England area and the difficulty of New England students in securing admission to osteopathic colleges. Osteopathic physicians comprised the majority of physicians available in numerous rural and urban areas. Failure to replace them would cause not only a marked loss to the profession but, more important, to the patients who had come to depend on osteopathic medical care. The group discussed ways of dealing with this problem and moved to establish an osteopathic college in New England.

The New England Foundation for Osteopathic Medicine (NEFOM) was incorporated in 1973 in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Since its inception, the purpose of this nonprofit tax-exempt organization was "to operate and maintain a foundation for the promotion of osteopathic medical education, osteopathic medical research, and the improvement of health care in osteopathic medical hospitals and related institutions."

These goals were established as a response to the needs recognized by the profession, which later became documented in studies supported by the Bureau of Health Manpower of the then U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare. The establishment of NEFOM, as well as the planning for the creation of a college of osteopathic medicine, was based on regionalism: the development of one osteopathic medical school to serve the six New England states was looked upon as an efficient and economical use of the region's resources.

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine opened its doors in the fall of 1978 with an entering class of 36 students. This momentous achievement was largely due to the financial support and hard work of individual osteopathic physicians, their state societies, the region's osteopathic hospitals, and grateful patients. Following four years of continued effort and financial support from the profession and its friends, the College graduated its first class in June of 1982.

Harold Alfond Center for Health Sciences
Alfond Center
COM Lecture Hall

The Harold Alfond Center for Health Sciences, which opened in 1996, provides a significant focus for the University. Located at the center of campus, this three-story building houses numerous laboratories and lecture halls. It is a joint-use building between the College of Osteopathic Medicine and the College of Arts and Sciences. The human gross anatomy lab - used by medical, health professions and athletic training students - is a modern facility for cadaveric and fresh tissue study.

Clinical Performance Center
Doctor with patient

The Clinical Performance Center (CPC) is an interactive clinical skills education, testing and evaluation facility, located in the Sanford F. Petts Center on the Biddeford Campus.

The center has a well-established Standardized Patient Program and a new Patient Simulator Program.

The CPC is designed and furnished in the model of an outpatient health center, with eight regular "exam rooms" and two additional dual-purpose examination and clinical simulation rooms. The exam rooms have ceiling cameras and microphones that can transmit audiovisual information about a student-standarized patient encounter to a large centralized monitoring and recording room for interactive evaluation purposes. The standardized patients are trained to role- play clinical case scenarios and to provide constructive feedback to students after their encounters.

The robotic patient simulators also provide learning opportunities in clinical scenarios that are frequently of a more critical or emergency nature. More information.

COM Research
The Pickus Center for Biomedical Research is a state-of-the-art biomedical research building that will house research teams of UNE faculty and student researchers. The 22,000 sq. ft. structure enables students to engage in important research as part of their curriculum, build upon the strong base of research that is already occurring at the College of Osteopathic Medicine, and create opportunities for collaborative research. The Center includes six laboratories, 12 faculty offices, two conference rooms, a lab tech office suite, and space for a future vivarium.

Stella Maris Hall
Stella Maris Hall houses COM's Office of the Deans, faculty and administrative offices and a number of faculty research laboratories.

University Health Care
Petts Health CareUniversity Health Care provides distinctive osteopathic services to the communities of southern Maine and serves as a learning laboratory for university students in the health professions. More information.

Student Health Care
The Student Health Care at the Sanford F. Petts Health Center on the Biddeford Campus and at Ginn Hall on the Portland Campus provides health care services to the University's students. More information.

University of New England Libraries

  • The Jack S. Ketchum Library on the Biddeford Campus and the Josephine S. Abplanalp '45 Library on the Portland Campus provide all UNE students, faculty and staff with these services:
  • Library Services homepage
  • Web access databases
  • ebooks, ejournals, enewspapers, eforms
  • Public access computers
  • Data jacks and wireless access for laptops
  • Remote access to all electronic resources and online catalog
  • Over 150,000 volumes
  • Over 45,000 print and electronic full text journal titles
  • Over 6,000 electronic books
  • Over 150 databases covering all subject areas in the curriculum
  • DVDs, videos, compact discs and CD-ROMs
  • Reference, research, and literature search assistance
  • Individual and course-related library research instruction
  • Circulation and reserves
  • Interlibrary loan and intercampus delivery
  • MaineCat and WorldCat
  • GPACU libraries on-site borrowing
  • Photocopiers and microfilm reader/printers
  • Group and individual study space
  • A current UNE ID also serves as a UNE Library Services ID
UNE Library Services Major Guide for Medicine is designed to help COM students find appropriate and important resources within the field of Medicine. The Guide for Medicine can be accessed at the following URL and include popular databases such as UpToDate, Medical Letter, MD Consult and


The UNE Libraries databases, electronic full-text journals, and electronic full-text medical books are accessible from on-campus and from off-campus, which is of particular benefit to students who are on clinical rotations.

For Students not on campus, there is an "Ask a Librarian" service that is staffed 8am to 7pm during the week and on weekends to answer any library related inquiries or request.

Information Technology Services
  • Information Technology Services (ITS): provides support for the entire University community including academic and administrative computing needs. Information Technology Service provides both resident and commuting students with a variety of technology tools to aid in the learning experience. These services include:
  • High-speed Internet access available to each resident room.
  • Student computer labs equipped with Microsoft Office and high speed printers.
  • The Computer Store, where students can purchase a variety of consumables including CD media, disk keys, and cables.
  • The ITS Helpdesks can be contacted at 207-602-2200 or X 2200 to assist in basic troubleshooting of computer and software issues.
  • ITS Hours M/F 7:30am - 7pm for walk-in service and a 24/7 toll free phone number is 877-518-4673.
  • myUNE (Google Apps), is used for faculty and student communications (e-mail, clubs, groups, classes, message boards, calendars, etc.).
  • U-Online for registration and transcript information.
  • for online instruction.
  • WebHelpDesk for online support
  • Blackboard is used in COM to provide access to all course material from both on and off campus sites. The system provides online access to lecture powerpoints, handouts, key drug lists, disease indexes, quizzes and communication through e-mail and announcements. In addition, the COM has an Academic IT Office located in Alfond 129 and is staffed by a Technology Integration Manager/Consultant. The office directly supports all technology within the college and is available to assist students, staff and faculty with blackboard training and troubleshooting. The office is open from 7:30am until 4:30pm and the phone number is 602-2335.

Campus Center
The Campus Center serves both as a fitness facility and a student union with extensive hours. The fitness center itself houses weight machines and free weights and cardiovascular equipment including stair steppers, elipical machines, exercise bikes, rowing machines and Nordic tracks. Other fitness facilities inlcude a 6-lane, 25-yard swimming pool; hydro-spa; saunas; indoor track; racquetball court, and 12,000 square feet of gymnasium space. A number of health and fitness programs are offered, as well as an extensive campus-wide intramurals program for both medical and undergraduate students. The Campus Bookstore, The Hang snack bar and multipurpose rooms and art gallery space are located in the Campus Center as well. Outdoor facilities offer jogging and cross country trails, and outdoor volleyball and basketball courts. More information.

The Community
Biddeford is a small city with a population of about 23,000 and Saco with a population of about 17,000 sits across the river. Although originally settled a few hundred years ago, the cities really developed as major textile center in the 1800s; most of the original textile mills have since been converted to residential, professional, commercial and light industrial use. The section of town where the University is located is about four miles from the two downtowns were the Saco River meets the ocean in an area known as Hills Beach. This seaside area is commercially undeveloped and is primarily a summer cottage and residential area. Neighboring towns include Old Orchard Beach, Arundel, Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, and Wells.

Portland, the largest city in Maine, is a 25-minute drive north from Biddeford. This growing metro area is justifiably proud of its fine symphony orchestra, active theater groups, concert halls and other live music venues, museums and many other arts organizations. There is an abundance of one-of-a-kind restaurants - more per capita than almost any city in the country - and countless shops in the downtown area. Portland is home to two minor-league sports teams: the Portland Seadogs are affiliated with the Boston Red Sox and the Portland Pirates play hockey at the Cumberland County Civic Center.

For individual athletic pursuits, there are opportunities in southern Maine for canoe and kayaking, mountain and road biking, hiking and camping, Nordic and alpine skiing, snowshoeing, bird watching, and fishing and hunting. Somtimes just spending time on the beaches is enough to please visitors and residents alike. The campus is only an hour's drive from the mountains and minutes from numerous rivers.

Located off exit 32 of the Maine Turnpike (Route I-95), Biddeford is within easy reach of most major eastern cities. Portsmouth, New Hampshire, a 40-minute drive from campus, affords the curious an opportunity for exposure to a seaport steeped in North American history. In addition, the historical and cultural riches of Boston are a 90-minute drive from the campus.

COM Students with Patients
The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine is a recognized leader in osteopathic medical education. The College's mission statement, philosophy, core values and vision provide a focus for students, faculty, administration and all the interactions within and between these populations. The curriculum, and the candidates selected to join the community in the full execution of the curriculum, are continually guided by these key ideas. They are:

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine transforms students into health care leaders who advance patient-centered, high quality osteopathic primary care, research, and community health for the people of Maine, New England, and the nation.

  • The body is a single integrated unit of function, possessing self-regulatory and self-healing mechanisms.
  • Preventive medicine and the musculoskeletal system play primary roles in maintaining optimal health.
  • Patient care incorporates the dynamic interaction of body, mind, and spirit.
Core Values
  • Professionalism - Demonstrating integrity, honesty and respect for all
  • Compassion - Caring for our patients, the community, and ourselves
  • Excellence - Achieving quality in all we do
  • Collaboration - Serving with others to achieve our mutual goals
  • Innovation - Shaping the future creatively while preserving our heritage
  • Critical Thinking - Encouraging personal and professional growth

University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine Degree Programs :


  • Master Degree
  • Medical Education Leadership (M.S.)
  • Doctorate/PhD
  • Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.)


  • Doctorate/PhD
  • Dental Medicine (D.M.D.)


  • Bachelor Degree
  • Pre-Pharmacy
  • Doctorate/PhD
  • Pharmacy (Pharm.D.)

Video Presentation

Osteopathic Oath at University of New England

Graduates of the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine reciting the osteopatic oath o June 6th, 2008

Contact Details

Address: Stella Maris Hall, 11 Hills Beach Road, Biddeford, ME 04005



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