Top Stories of 2012: No. 2 The medical school takes shape

January 4, 2013 | Leave a Comment

Top Stories of 2012: No. 2 The medical school takes shape

When 2012 began, the site of Campbell University’s School of Osteopathic Medicine was still an empty field, save for a few bricks and construction equipment set in place immediately after the December 2011 groundbreaking ceremony.

Drive by the site today and the difference is astounding.

In the past year, the 96,500-square-foot facility that will house North Carolina’s first new medical school in 35 years has taken shape. Aside from aesthetics and window work, the outside of the building is nearly complete. The first few months of 2013 will be dedicated to what’s inside the walls.

By next fall, the 150 students who will make up the first class of Campbell’s medical school will be on the track toward a degree in the medical field. And history will have been made.

While 2013 will be the biggest year for the medical school, 2012 was an important one that will go a long way toward the school’s success.

In addition to the construction, the school received provisional accreditation and began recruiting and accepting students over the summer. In addition, several key administrative and faculty hires were made.

The school also announced in 2012 that it had raised over $26 million in a few short years. A big chunk of that came in the form of two $2 million gifts from a pair of well-known North Carolina philanthropic organizations.

A quick rundown on the year that was for the Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine and a few “by the numbers” …

APRIL: BB&T announced it had pledged $1.75 million toward the medical school. BB&T Eastern Region President Scott Evans, Dunn Branch Manager Mike Parham and Dunn Site Manager Larry Byrd were on hand recently to present the first installment of that pledge - a $250,000 check - to Campbell University President Dr. Jerry Wallace in April. “Campbell University and BB&T enjoy an excellent long-standing partnership,” Evans said. “While serving as the primary financial partner for Campbell, we have also been a significant financial supporter over the years as well.”

APRIL: The medical school was approved to begin recruiting students by the Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA). The provisional accreditation status went into effect in July. “This is an exciting moment for Campbell University, the Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine, Harnett County and all of North Carolina,” Campbell President Jerry Wallace said at the time. “This medical school will train primary care physicians to address a critical shortage of healthcare professionals throughout our state.” Provisional accreditation status, as outlined by the COCA, means the school is eligible to actively recruit students, matriculate new students and offer a program of medical instruction with an approved osteopathic curriculum. Provisional status can last for no more than five years and can extend until the year in which CUSOM intends to graduate its first class in May 2017. 

AUGUST: Campbell announced two partnerships which resulted in $4 million toward the medical school, the largest foundation gifts in the University’s 125-year history. Campbell was granted $2 million from both the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust and the Golden LEAF Foundation. The money will be used for the medical school’s state-of-the-art simulation lab, anatomy labs and clinical examination area, all of which will bear the name of both groups. The University celebrated the announcement with a ceremony and bus tour of the under-construction facility. Nearly 100 trustees, alumni, members of the Medical School Founders Board, faculty and guests were on hand for the ceremony, held at the John W. Pope Jr. Convocation Center. 

NOVEMBER: When Gardner Altman, an attorney from White Oak, decided to donate his 1964 Corvette for a raffle to benefit the medical school, he hoped that the raffle would raise awareness for the school and be a blessing for the winner of the car. Both happened. The tickets raised $50,000 for the school, and the winner of the car was John Dees of Raeford. Dees’ son Aaron was born with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which causes muscular weakness and gradually worsens over time. Many people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy don’t live into their 20s, according to the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Osteopathic doctors were among those who cared for Aaron, who lived to see his 18th birthday.


  • 700: Completed student applications received between June and August.
  • 150: Students who’ll be admitted into the medical school’s first class
  • 65: Full-time faculty and staff to be hired to initially work at the medical school
  • $60 million: Estimated amount of construction and start-up costs of the medical school
  • 1,158: New jobs expected to be created in North Carolina during the medical school’s first 10 years of operation
  • $300 million: The regional economic impact expected during the medical school’s first 10 years of operation