Medical School plans kept behind closed doors
The University has its lips sealed about the progress of Seton Hall’s new School of Medicine, which was announced in January.
On Jan. 14, A. Gabriel Esteban sent an email announcing the University’s intent to create the only private medical school in New Jersey and projecting that the School would begin to enroll students at a new campus in Nutley and Clifton, N.J., by fall 2017.
Almost a year later, there have been no major updates since June 9 when Seton Hall and Hackensack UHN, which signed a memorandum of understanding in January, officially formalized the partnership.
The University has not released any official information since the announcement, though some insight was hinted about a possible joint admission program and relocating the School of Nursing and the School of Health and Medical Sciences to buildings located at the former headquarters campus of the Hoffman-LaRoche pharmaceutical company.
However, the details at this time are vague.
When asked about the possible relocation of the School of Nursing and the School of Health and Medical Sciences to the new campus, Vice President of Student Services, Tracy Gottlieb, said, “There’s a lot of balls in the air right now—that is one of them. I think everybody believes that it would be a great thing—all of our science health professions there, in a new and exciting state-of-the-art campus.”
Another ball in the air is a joint admission program, which would see students accepted for undergraduate studies and the medical school at the same time. Dr. Gottlieb compared it to the Physical Therapy Program, where students must adhere to certain criteria but do not have to take the MCATs to keep their offer of graduate admission.
“I think that’s a stressful hurdle that people have to jump through,” she said of taking the MCATs.
Alyssa McCloud, vice president of Enrollment Management, said, “We are planning to have a joint admission program, but none of the specific details or criteria have been set.”
Dr. Gottlieb said she has not heard about any change from the projected fall 2017 start of enrollment at the Medical School. The School is expected to enroll 125 to 150 students per class.
Brian Shulman, dean of the School of Health and Medical Sciences, said that Provost Larry Robinson appointed him to be “point person” on this project, which started to be talked about seriously only in recent years. He said the future medical school along with the School of Health and Medical Sciences and the College of Nursing will collaborate on a number of levels but will maintain their status as distinct academic units within the University, as reported in The Setonian. Shulman said there are “no major updates at this time.”
Robinson and Senior Associate Provost Joan Guetti declined to comment on the project at this time. Similarly, John Signorello, associate vice president of Facilities and Operations, redirected all inquiries about the Medical School to Seton Hall’s Public Relations Department.
Dan Kalmanson, associate vice president of Media Relations, said the University and HackensackUHN have been “working tirelessly to finalize their plans for the school. At this time, there is nothing new to report.”
After the New Jersey Board of Medical Examiners approved the plan for the School earlier this year, Seton Hall must wait for accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) before it can receive federal grants and funds, as reported on NJ.com.
There are no updates from the University on this pending approval at this time.
Emily Balan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org