Morgan State University said yesterday that it plans to open a new medical school by 2024, making it the second HBCU this year to announce plans for a med school on campus.
University officials said they planned to partner with Ascension Saint Agnes Hospital on a new College of Osteopathic Medicine, according to CBS News. The school would be a private, for-profit venture (although the University is called Morgan State, it is not part of the University of Maryland system of colleges and universities like the three other HBCUs in the state, Coppin State University, Bowie State University and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore).
The new medical school will eventually accommodate as many as 750 students, the university said.
There hasn’t been a new medical school opened at an HBCU in almost 50 years. But Morgan State’s announcement comes at a time when there’s increased interest and innovation in the institutions. In April, Xavier University of Louisiana announced plans for its own new med school to open within the next three years. Xavier has been among the top five colleges in the country for graduating Black pre-med students, who then go on to other institutions to continue their medical education.
In May, the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Sciences in Los Angeles, Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee, and the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta announced a new initiative aimed at getting more African-Americans to become registered as organ donors.
That same month, the National Football League partnered with four HBCU medical schools on an initiative to train more Black medical students in sports medicine, with the goal of creating a pipeline of Black team doctors, athletic trainers, surgeons and other specialists to work in professional sports.