C.S. Mott Foundation commits $9 million for MSU med school - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

C.S. Mott Foundation commits $9 million for MSU med school expansion in Flint

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FLINT (WJRT) -

(02/17/14) - The Charles Stewart Mott Foundation has awarded $9 million for the expansion of Michigan State University's College of Human Medicine and public health program in Flint.

The grant was announced Monday, Feb. 17.

"MSU medical students have trained in Flint for many years and the university has developed a strong working relationship with out local health care institutions," says William White, president and CEO of the Mott Foundation. "This public health project adds an exciting new dimension to that work."

The development of the Flint campus and MSU's public health program is part of a larger vision by the university and Mott Foundation to increase the number of medical students trained by the program, establish a new focus on community-based research and health care delivery and strengthen collaboration among local hospitals and higher education institutions, according to a news release from the Mott Foundation. 

The MSU College of Human Medicine's Flint campus, including the public health program and researchers, will occupy approximately 40,000 square feet of the building downtown that once housed the office of the Flint Journal newspaper. The property, currently being renovated, is owned by Uptown Reinvestment Corporation.

The college expects to occupy the space in November 2014, providing an anchor for the Health and Wellness District. 

By July, more than 100 students are expected, in the area, at any given time. MSU says that doubles the number of third and fourth year medical students.

"Our partnership with the Mott Foundation is helping MSU do more of what we do best: bringing world-class research to bear on real-world problems," says MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon.

Along with students, Dr. Marsha Rappley, Dean of MSU's College of Human Medicine, says there will be 20-25 faculty members present and up to 40 other employees. New researchers are being recruited.

The expansion centers MSU's Program in Public Health, including a master's degree in public health and an MD/MPH program, in downtown Flint.

"We have worked with more than 80 organizations across greater Flint area identifying what areas of research would be meaningful to people in Flint and they came up with three areas to focus on," Rappley said.

The three areas are chronic disease, behavioral and mental health and healthy behaviors.

The college launched its public health program and Masters in Public Health degree on MSU's main campus, in East Lansing, in 2008. The degree is designed to be available to non-traditional students through online course work and community-based curriculum, research and practicums, according to a news release. 

MSU's decision, in 2011, to embed the public health program in downtown Flint has been supported by several years of planning and development by the university and a number of local partners including the Genesee County Health Department, Genesys Health System, Hurley Medical Center and McLaren Health Care Flint. The Mott Foundation helped fund those efforts with a $2.81 million grant to MSU in 2011.

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