Baptist University College of Osteopathic Medicine Hosts Commemoration Event

Baptist University College of Osteopathic Medicine (BUCOM) held a commemoration event for its BUCOM building on Friday, June 23. Highlights included placing a Bible in a capsule in the foundation and signing a steel beam that will be installed in the building.

Turner Construction Company, Baker Barrios, Inc. and CBRE Healthcare are working on the construction project, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2023. BUCOM will host its inaugural class of medical students in 2024.

Retiring President of Baptist Health Sciences University Betty Sue McGarvey welcomed and thanked guests.

“This is a significant development for our College of Osteopathic Medicine and Baptist University. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the mission and future of the university,” said Dr. McGarvey.

President and CEO of Baptist Memorial Health Care Jason Little highlighted the importance of the connection between Baptist Health Sciences University (BHSU) and Baptist Memorial Health Care, and how that will result in high-quality medical training for osteopathic medical students and greater access to care for Mid-South communities.

“At Baptist, osteopathic medical students will have unparalleled access to medical specialties, providers and training opportunities, putting Baptist at the center of medical excellence for all health care disciplines from nursing to physicians,” said Little.

Vice-Provost and Dean of Medical Education for BUCOM Dr. Peter Bell introduced the College of Osteopathic Medicine founding faculty and staff and thanked the building partners and supporters of BUCOM.

“I am grateful to witness this milestone, and I’d like to express my gratitude to our construction partners and faculty for all they’ve done to help get us to this point. I’d also like to recognize our peers at supporting institutions in the area. Together, we can help increase access to medical care and make the Mid-South healthier,” said Dr. Bell.

Chris Harmon, senior project manager for CBRE Healthcare, spoke about the excitement and collaboration on the BUCOM project.

Director of Faith and Service and BHSU Chaplain Karen Smith presided over placing a Bible in a capsule in the foundation of the BUCOM building. A significant verse was highlighted from John 7:38 – “Whoever believes in me, as scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow within them.”

“Jesus talked a lot about the living waters of life. Jesus is the living water. ‘Come to me and you will never thirst again.’ As we commemorate this building, may we commit to bringing the living waters to all who are touched by these future physicians,” said Chaplain Smith.

The event ended with the collective signing of a steel beam to be installed in the BUCOM building.