Nearly a year after relocating to Barbados, officials at Ross University School of Medicine are touting favourable academic performance and a good relationship with the local community.
Associate Dean of Medical Sciences Dr Rhonda McIntyre told reporters after the convocation ceremony to mark the start of the academic year at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre (LESC) this afternoon, that Ross was settled and on its way to being well established in Barbados.
Ross has also started supporting philanthropic projects and has already entered agreements with clinical partners to provide students with the opportunity to stay in touch with medicine, she added.
Dr McIntyre said: “We continue to grow in Barbados. I am very impressed with how we have been embraced by the Barbadian community.
“We have really gotten our feet on the ground and we have a good appreciation of how things are done here and how we relate with the rest of the community. I think all in all we feel well rounded and settled interms of our students being academically provided for.
“Our academic community here was established in short time and we have provided all of the academic support that we are normally use to providing and more.
“So students are in a state-of-the-art environment where all the classrooms are state-of-the-art where we focus on using technology. Generally speaking our students are doing very well.”
The American university started classes in Barbados in January after the devastation of Dominica by Hurricane Maria in 2017.
On the medical school’s academic performance, Dr McIntyre boasted a 96 per cent first-time pass rate in the American Medical Licensing Exam Step 1.
Ross currently has a roll of almost 1,400 with students being enrolled three times a year.
She said: “A 96 per cent pass rate is something we are really proud of.
“We actually have an excellent Residency Attainment rate of 91 per cent which is just one per cent shy of what you find in US medical schools.”
Chief Academic Officer Dr James M. Record who joined the School of Medicine two months ago said it was commendable that the organisation was able to recover “so well from a devastating impact”.
He said he was impressed that there was no fall off in student numbers as a result of the relocation.
Dr Record said: “We are so thrilled to have the connections with Barbados.
“It is only a few months in, not even a full year and to think of how well the operation has been moving.
“This is really a tribute to how well we have been received on the island.”