More than a Mission Statement
To us it's not just another mission statement -- it's a living and breathing principle that guides each and every member of the WVSOM family to produce the best educated, most caring and compassionate osteopathic physicians in the world:
"The mission of the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM) is to educate students from diverse backgrounds as lifelong learners in osteopathic medicine and complementary health related programs; to advance scientific knowledge through academic, clinical and basic science research; and to promote patient-centered, evidence based medicine.
WVSOM is dedicated to serve, first and foremost, the state of West Virginia and the special health care needs of its residents, emphasizing primary care in rural areas."
Medical School as it Should Be
Where tech meets hometown. It's a personal touch combined with cutting-edge technology that makes the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine the perfect place for future physicians to expand their minds while learning a personal, holistic approach to medicine.
A Leader in Medical Education
A leader in producing graduates who practice in rural settings, WVSOM blends the ease of living in a breathtaking mountain community with a nationally recognized faculty and innovative programs. U.S.News & World Report has ranked WVSOM among the top medical schools in the nation in primary care and family medicine for the past 14 years, solidifying the school's reputation as a place where scientific study and compassion are joined in one curriculum.
WVSOM is known nationwide for its efforts in Rural, Family, and Primary Care medicine:
A Medical School in Rural Appalachia
The history of WVSOM can be traced back to the 1950s, when visionary members of the West Virginia State Society of Osteopathic Medicine began to realize their dream of founding a medical school in rural Appalachia.
The Need for Rural Doctors
These visionary medical pioneers recognized the need for doctors in the poor, rural communities of the state. Those who envisioned an osteopathic medical school believed it could become a reality and took up the cause despite many critics and naysayers. It took many years, however, before that dream took form.
Lewisburg is Selected
In the early 1970s, Lewisburg was selected as the future site of the osteopathic medical school. Lewisburg was chosen by virtue of its central location in the Appalachian region, its rural setting, and the availability of the former Greenbrier Military School (GMS), a historic facility that had just ceased operation.
The main GMS building and its 43 acre campus located within the Lewisburg city limits was an attractive site to those seeking to develop a small, rural medical school. Indeed, today Lewisburg remains one the nation's smallest medical school communities.
From Dream to Reality
In 1972, the private Greenbrier College of Osteopathic Medicine was chartered with financial assistance from the Appalachian Regional Commission and encouragement from numerous state and federal officials.
Initial renovation of the military school complex continued for two years before the school opened and accepted its charter class of 36 osteopathic medical students in 1974.
WVSOM is Born
The move from a private to a public institution came in January 1976 when the college was brought into the state system of higher education.
By virtue of its state funding, the college was renamed the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine and focused its efforts on training West Virginia residents to practice primary care medicine in rural communities of the state.
The First Class
WVSOM awarded 33 students with their Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degrees in June 1978, marking the beginning of a new era of medical care for the state of West Virginia.
Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation
The West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM) is fully accredited by the Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA) of the American Osteopathic Association (AOA).
COCA is the only accrediting agency which is recognized by the United States Department of Education (USDE) for accrediting institutions regarding predoctoral education of osteopathic physicians in the United States.
The address and phone number of the accrediting agency are: Secretary, Osteopathic College Accreditations; American Osteopathic; 142 East Ontario Street; Chicago, IL 60611; Phone 312-202-8097; Fax 312-202-8397.
Statement on Academic Professional Ethics
One of several requirements of COCA is that institutions adopt a statement on academic professional Ethics. The WVSOM Board of Governors approved this statement at its meeting on June 25, 2011.
WVSOM Commencement 2012 Video News Release
Four WVSOM graduates reflect on becoming osteopathic physicians.
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