School of Medicine anniversary highlights May commencements

Nearly 700 students in medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences are candidates to graduate this month from UT Health San Antonio. Ceremonies of the university’s five schools will take place May 18-20.

The Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine at UT Health San Antonio is celebrating its golden anniversary of producing physicians for San Antonio, the state and the nation. Fifty years ago this fall, the Long School of Medicine opened the doors to its first classes of students. This year’s Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degree candidates, more than 200 strong, will join alumni numbering more than 8,300.

Read the recollections of a founding faculty member Marvin Forland, M.D.

“Fifty years of fulfilling the noble missions of education, patient care and research is a great achievement,” said Robert A. Hromas, M.D., FACP, dean of the Long School of Medicine and vice president for medical affairs at UT Health San Antonio. Dr. Hromas, board certified in internal medicine with a subspecialty board certification in hematology, joined UT Health San Antonio in February 2018 from the University of Florida.

“We see further when standing on the shoulders of giants,” Dr. Hromas said. “The visionary leaders of the first half-century of the Long School of Medicine charted a course to serve San Antonio, South Texas and all of humanity. We owe them our profound gratitude.”

Educating health care providers and scientists to serve humanity

As of May 1, 2018, the five schools of UT Health San Antonio had 35,175 alumni (unduplicated headcount). The School of Nursing led the way with 11,000 alumni, followed by the School of Health Professions with 8,500, the Long School of Medicine with 8,300, the School of Dentistry 4,800 and the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences 2,400 (figures rounded).

According to preliminary estimates, UT Health San Antonio this May will graduate:

  • More than 200 physicians
  • More than 120 nurses
  • More than 110 dentists
  • Approximately 90 health professionals
  • Approximately 70 biomedical scientists

Note: Various other programs at UT Health San Antonio will boost the May graduate total to nearly 700. For example, in addition to awarding an estimated 110 Doctor of Dental Surgery (D.D.S.) degrees to newly minted dentists, the School of Dentistry will confer other degrees and certifications to approximately 70 other graduates.)

50 years old and many points of distinction

The Long School of Medicine annually is among the leading medical schools in the nation in granting Doctor of Medicine degrees to Hispanic students. This is in keeping with the demographics of the population of South Texas.

The Long School of Medicine includes:

  • 18 clinical departments encompassing scores of divisions;
  • eight basic science departments; and
  • 15 centers and institutes; one example is the Mays Cancer Center, the newly named home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Faculty of the Long School of Medicine see patients in the region’s largest multidisciplinary practice, called UT Health Physicians, and through dozens of clinical partners.

Future will be strong

“Over the next 50 years, we will continue to provide comprehensive and rigorous education to aspiring physicians, as well as superb training to resident physicians and fellows,” Dean Hromas said. “We continually improve the curriculum to include the innovative advances sweeping medicine in order to best prepare our students. During their careers, our physician graduates will promote the public’s health and compassionately and competently treat disease. They will understand that each patient is a person and not just a disease diagnosis. Our faculty not only care for the sickest patients in the region, but also make discoveries that enhance the standard of care. They focus on the health issues that plague our community the most, such as diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s and trauma. The next half-century will be another great era of medicine in South Texas, and the Long School of Medicine will lead it.”

2018 spring commencement schedule

 Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences– 4 p.m. Friday, May 18, in Holly Auditorium; speaker: Larry Schlesinger, M.D., president and CEO of Texas Biomedical Research Institute

School of Dentistry– 9 a.m. Saturday, May 19, at UTSA Convocation Center; speaker: Brian Schroder, D.D.S., FACD, FICD, School of Dentistry alumnus and teacher in the Advanced Education in General Dentistry Program in the School of Dentistry.

School of Health Professions– 2 p.m. Saturday, May 19; at UTSA Convocation Center; speaker:  Colleen Bridger, M.P.H., Ph.D., director, San Antonio Metropolitan Health District’

School of Nursing– 9 a.m. Sunday, May 20, at UTSA Convocation Center; speaker: Nelson Tuazon, D.B.A., M.S.N., M.A.Ed., RN, NEA-BC, CENP, CPHQ, FACHE, vice president and chief nursing officer, University Health System.

School of Medicine– 2 p.m. Sunday, May 20, at UTSA Convocation Center; speaker: Robert Hromas, M.D., FACP, dean of the Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine  and vice president for medical affairs at UT Health San Antonio.


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