College of Medicine gains full accreditation

President Mark Rosenberg.(FIUSM File Photo)

Stephan Useche/Asst. News Director

The inaugural class of the Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine will graduate with the comfort of knowing their college is fully accredited.

Four years after its founding and seven years after the Florida Board of Governors and Florida Legislature approved it, the College of Medicine was granted full accreditation in spring 2013.

“This is actually a really good thing,” said Karina Arce, a freshman in nursing. “Before they admitted up to 30 people, but now they will allow more into the program.”

The college has been “developing a curriculum that reflects an innovative, 21st century approach to health and medical education,” according to a University-wide email.

The college admitted its first class in 2009.

On Feb. 7, students received an email from the University informing them of the news. The email says the first class of students graduating will be eligible for medical residency programs.

According to the email, “the Wertheim College of Medicine will graduate its inaugural class of 33 students” in spring 2013.

The accreditation was made by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, which claimed the college met the steps to become a “full-fledged” medical school.

The LCME is a “nationally-recognized accrediting authority for medical education programs leading to the M.D. degree in U.S. and Canadian medical schools,” according to the press release.

Any state licensing board needs to be accredited by the LCME to be eligible for licensure as an allopathic physician, according to the University’s email.

This accomplishment, however, can be credited to the ones who raised awareness to the importance of having a public medical school in South Florida, such as Dr. Herbert Wertheim, who gave $20 million and his name to the school, according to the press release, University President Mark Rosenberg and President Emeritus Modesto A. Maidique, who is also the executive director of the Center for Leadership.

They convinced the Florida Board of Governors and the legislature to authorize the new college.

College of Medicine Dean John Rock was unavailable for comment as of press time.