OSU-CHS Hosts North Hall Ribbon-Cutting, Celebrates Med School’s 50th Anniversary

Friday 29 July 2022

Media contact: Sarah Plummer | Communications Coordinator | 918-561-1282 | sara.plummer@okstate.edu

The OSU Center for the Health Sciences celebrated the opening of the newest campus building in North Hall with a ribbon-cutting ceremony, as well as celebrated the fiftiethThe tenth Anniversary of The Ohio State University College of Osteopathic Medicine during an event Thursday, July 28, in the lobby of the new facility.

The 120,000-square-foot North Hall building is home to the new office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Tulsa as well as new anatomy and neuroanatomy laboratories, three classrooms, 65 study blocks for graduate program students, and 21 conference and meeting rooms, a department, and administrative office spaces.

“We are all so grateful for the culture we have in the Cowboy family, and part of that culture doesn’t work alone. We believe in collaboration and partnership, and our valued partners are what helped us get here today,” said OSU-CHS President Johnny Stevens. “This building represents growth in both the Physician Assistant Program and in our graduate programs at OSU-CHS. New facilities like this help us attract and educate the best and brightest students in the state and give us room for future growth.”

Working with state legislators, including Senator Roger Thompson and Representative Kevin Wallace, has helped secure a portion of the funding for the facility that more than doubles the space for the medical examiner’s office in Tulsa and dramatically increases the size of the autopsy lab and provides a dedicated neuroanatomy lab for the medical, physician assistant, and program students Graduate Studies.

“I appreciate my close friends at Ohio State University and the medical examiner’s office for working together on a plan for a space that meets the critical needs of such an important function of state government,” Thompson said. “I also appreciate Ohio State University’s leadership in state health care, and have always been deeply supportive of President Casey Shroom and the vision of Dr. Stephens. I have no doubts that many great things will come from this campus and I am grateful for Ohio State University’s many thriving partnerships with the state of Oklahoma.

Wallace recalled a few years ago when OSU and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner presented a plan for a common space that would not only meet the needs and accreditation requirements for the medical examiner’s office, but would also allow more laboratory and teaching space for Ohio State University to continue training the state’s next generation of physicians.

North Hall of the OSU-CHS Campus
North Hall on the campus of The Ohio State University Health Sciences Center.

“It was easy to be supportive of the joint effort and know I speak for my colleagues in the House of Representatives when I say we appreciate the cooperation between the two entities to make this cutting-edge facility a reality,” Wallace said.

Eric Pfeffer, chief medical examiner, said the unparalleled state-of-the-art facility is located in the heart of North Hall.

“On my site, I’ve seen medical examiner offices all over the country, and this office is like no other,” Pfeiffer said, and the same can be said for lab spaces at OSU-CHS. “What comes out of this school will shake the world of medicine.”

The North Hall Project began when Shrum was still President of OSU-CHS and Dean of the College of Medicine, and is the most recent example of collaboration and partnership, which has become a hallmark of the institution in its 50-year history.

“At Ohio State University we are proud of the partnerships we have forged with public, private, and philanthropic entities across our great state,” Sharm said. “It’s also a great day to celebrate the fiftiethThe tenth Anniversary of the College of Osteopathic Medicine and considering the impact that a facility like this will have on our mission of preparing the next generation of physicians and healthcare professionals to serve Oklahoma.”

Several notable alumni also attended the event and spoke about their ongoing relationship with the school including Dr. Trudy Milner, who graduated from OSU-COM in 1988 and now works on the OSU/A&M Board of Regents.

“My journey to becoming a doctor began in 1984,” Milner said. “I was a nurse and had two young daughters, so I wasn’t your typical medical student.” “And while the progress all around us at OSU-CHS is really something to note, I can tell you that the quality of the education goes back to day one at this medical school. I have always been very proud to call myself a graduate student of The Ohio State University School of Osteopathic Medicine” .

Dr. Dennis Blankenship graduated from Ohio State University in 2001 and now serves as interim dean of his university.

“When I decided to become a doctor, my dream was to go back to my hometown and practice primary care. During my journey, I fell in love with emergency medicine and my path changed as I found a new passion in teaching,” said Blankenship. “I started training students and residents in emergency medicine, and that continues to be one of the best parts of my job today. I am very proud of our college, our students, and our alumni.”

It’s hard to believe, Stevens said, that it’s been 50 years since the college was established to train doctors in rural and underserved areas of Oklahoma.

“I’m proud to say that we do this job every day with more than 3,800 alumni and over 800 physicians working across the state,” he said. “As we celebrate 50 years of our on-campus College of Osteopathic Medicine, we look forward to continuing our mission to educate primary care physicians in rural and underserved areas of Oklahoma.”