(10/04/12) - Saginaw will be home to two new medical school buildings in the coming years.
Central Michigan University unveiled drawings of the two buildings that will be part of CMU's new medical school. One building adjacent to Covenant Healthcare on the west side of the city, and the other near St. Mary's of Michigan, on the west side.
CMU decided on two sites that will feature two different medical trainings. Construction could begin next fall.
"The issue is really for people in our area having access to health care, physicians are one of the key players," said Dr. Ernie Yoder, CMU College of Medicine dean.
But Yoder says the school, which has already received more than 2,000 applications, will do more than develop doctors.
"So we are partnering with other health professions to make sure we do inter-professional team training, etcetera so that we attract and keep the other partners for the health care team," he said.
CMU has raised more than $16.4 million for the medical school.
"People have been forthcoming on that decision because they know the impact this will have on our community," said Doug Iles, CMU foundation development.
Now that the drawings have been unveiled, the school expects to reach its goal of $25 million.
"The people in this area have held our feet to the fire, and that's been fine, we needed to be challenged, but we hope today, a lot of those questions have been answered," said Kathleen Wilbur, CMU Vice President.
Saginaw County Chamber CEO Bob VanDeventer says this could be the game-changer Saginaw needs to attract more business to the downtown region.
"We being the region, want to be a hub for health care specialty, for health care practice, anything north of Flint," he said."It also represents a cultural shift."
The first medical school students will begin next August, with students beginning their education in Mt. Pleasant, with their third and fourth years in Saginaw.
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