FORT WORTH, Texas — Texas Christian University is expanding and adding a campus to the medical district of Fort Worth, university officials announced Tuesday.
TCU is adding a new medical campus for the university's School of Medicine, which the university is calling "one of the newest and most innovative medical schools in the country."
In the announcement about this addition, TCU said it is working to invest in Fort Worth's Near Southside neighborhood. The TCU School of Medicine, now recruiting its fourth class, will drive economic development and biomedical advances through partnerships with hospitals, health care organizations and biotech industries.
Construction will begin this year on a four-story, approximately 100,000 square-foot medical education building at the northeast corner of South Henderson St. and West Rosedale St. This is between Interstate 30 and Interstate 35W in Fort Worth.
The new campus will be an academic hub for 240 medical students and hundreds of faculty and staff. The university said it should be completed by 2024 while additional facilities are expected as part of the "master plan."
This campus should not only have an impact on TCU students but the Fort Worth community overall as well, according to Chancellor Victor J. Boschini, Jr.
"Our Horned Frog medical students are benefitting from an exceptional educational experience, the vast clinical expertise and growing medical industry in our area," Boschini, Jr. said. "The TCU School of Medicine is already contributing to the health of our neighbors and the greater good."
The first class of students began in July 2019 and will graduate in 2023. The School of Medicine’s fourth class will begin in July 2022.
Last month, TCU announced it would be splitting with the UNT Health Science Center but the two schools would continue to cooperate with one another.
As a part of this new split agreement, TCU would be paying the UNT Health Science Center to use some of its facilities and services.
One of the main goals of the new campus will be training and educating many future physicians who will then go on to work in the area, according to Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker.
"This expansion of TCU's campus to the Near Southside represents a significant contribution to the Fort Worth economy and job growth," Parker said. "This – paired with the TCU School of Medicine's transformational impact on health care – ensures that Fort Worth's future remains vital and vibrant."
Stuart Flynn is the founding dean of the medical school, and he said the new campus' close proximity to the major health care providers in the area will help make this type of transition to the workplace fairly smooth.
"Proximity of the medical school is essential to build robust relationships and advantage the amazing opportunities that we and our partners have in Fort Worth," Flynn said. "I thank TCU for the vision that will guide our students and school to drive excellence in health care and innovation for our community and beyond."
The medical school was announced in 2015 with the vision of becoming an innovative medical school that would contribute to Fort Worth’s growing bioscience sector, according to TCU.
"This is an exciting time for our institution," said Teresa Abi-Nader Dahlberg, the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. "The medical school is a vital part of our stellar academic offerings, further enhancing the student experience and elevating our academic profile. TCU is proud of our impactful work in health care. We graduate thousands of leaders per year — hundreds of them are caring and qualified nurses. Our work and research in developing new therapies, addressing health disparities and healing through clinical and social interventions has created positive impact for decades."
TCU's medical school was created with a curriculum that focuses on developing Empathetic Scholars and future physicians. This approach to medical education includes flipped classrooms without lectures and partnering students with physicians from their first day in medical school, TCU said.
Each student also completes a four-year Scholarly, Pursuit & Thesis research project on a topic of his or her own choice.
The TCU School of Medicine received preliminary accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education in 2018.