State Approves Funds for A&M Health Science Center Growth

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A $33 million infusion has been authorized for the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine. Now, officials with the college can breath a little easier.

The Health Science Center's Vice President of Academic Affairs, Roderick McCallum, says with the additional funds, the college now has money to finance classroom, staff, research, and facility expansion.

"'We're delighted we do now have the financial backing to move ahead," McCallum said. "We're trying to finalize our planning for the allocation of those funds, but overall the medical program will develop much more extensively."

McCallum says the money will be shared among its three campuses in Bryan-College Station, Temple, and Round Rock.

Locally, one major change those appropriated funds will result in is medical students being able to do the bulk of pre-clinical and clinical training at either the Bryan-College Station campus or the Temple site.

"This will allow us to build a full four-year program on both campuses now, so we'll have a first-through-fourth year students in Bryan-College Station," McCallum said.

Statistics show about 70 percent of the Health Science Center's graduates stay in Texas, and McCallum says in light of the state's doctor shortage, the ability to finance expansion plans could help cure the state's problem.

"I think to develop these two four campuses is really a smart thing for us at this time and will be very cost effective for the state of Texas and the citizens," McCallum said.

It could also result in one more thing: "More Aggie docs for Texas," McCallum said.