The West Virginia School of Medicine first opened in
1902, but did not begin to provide a 4-year program
until 1960 when the University Hospital opened. The
school became known as the West Virginia University
Health Sciences Center, Charleston Division, in 1972
when the Charleston Area Medical Center joined the
university. In 1974 theWheeling Division of the Health
Sciences Center was established. It is currently known
as the Robert C. Byrd Sciences Center of West Virginia
University. Beside the School of Medicine, the Center
contains schools of Dentistry, Nursing, and Pharmacy.
4-year semitraditional. First and second years:
Introductory and advanced basic sciences. Student is
introduced to community medicine and clinical medicine, including the foundations for histories and
physicals. The first-year basic science courses are integrated, and have common test methods and problembasedlearningclinicalapplications.Thirdyear:Thetraditional clerkships, including neurology and family
medicine. Fourth year: This year is partially structured
and partially elective. Five months are devoted to a
required rotation, 2 months involve rural primary care,
1 month in critical care/anesthesia, 1 month in surgery
or a surgical subspecialty, and 1 month in internal medicine, family medicine, or a pediatric subinternship.The
balance of the program is elective. Each student, in consultation with an advisor, develops the program best
suited to attain his or her goals. The Office of Student
Services has a list of approved electives. Third- and
fourth-year experiences are primarily based in Ruby
Memorial Hospital or Eastern Charleston Division,
with some approved rotations at other institutions.
During the third and fourth years, students spend a minimum total of 3 months in rural clinic locations.
Minority admissions: The school has a minority
recruitment program and offers a 1-month summer
enrichment program. Other degree programs:
Combined MD-PhD programs are offered in the basic
medical sciences and other disciplines.
Requirements include the basic premedical science
courses and 1 year each of English and of behavioral or
social sciences. Courses in biochemistry and molecular
biology are very desirable. Computer literacy is
required. Minimum of 90 hours of college work is
required at a grade of C or higher from an accredited
U.S. or Canadian school. Transfer and advanced standing: Transfer applications for admission to the
third-year class are accepted.
All courses are graded on an Honors/Satisfactory/
Unsatisfactory plus narrative grading system. Taking
and passing Steps 1 and 2 of the USMLE is required.
Teaching: The Health Sciences Building opened for
instructional purposes in 1957. Ruby Memorial Hospital
opened in 1988; adjoining is the new Physician Office
Center. Also on the Health Sciences Campus are the
Chestnut Ridge Psychiatric Hospital, Mountainview
Regional Rehabilitation Hospital, an outpatient center,
and a cancer center. Library:The Health Sciences Center
Library has more than 265,000 bound volumes and
Library and Health Sciences Center provide free internet
access to National Library of Medicine data bases for
affiliated students, faculty, and staff. Special services are
offered to support medical students on rural rotations.