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The 115 members of the Florida State University College of Medicine Class of 2015 learned where they would be continuing training during the school’s Match Day ceremony in the Ruby Diamond Concert Hall.

“It’s remarkable to look at its legacy … and see how far it has come as an institution,” the school’s dean said.

Florida State University’s College of Medicine is being recognized by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine as a recipient of the 2020 Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award.

The College of Medicine, in Tallahassee, is but one of 46 health-professions programs in the country being honored, and this year marks the fourth consecutive year it has landed the coveted award.

This latest award and other accolades are certain to get a mention Friday evening as the college celebrates its 20th anniversary with a virtual celebration. It begins at 7 p.m.

Dr. John P. Fogarty, dean of the FSU College of Medicine (Photo: Florida State)

“This medical school was created with a goal of helping to meet health care needs in communities that have traditionally struggled to provide adequate access to care,” College of Medicine Dean John P. Fogarty said in a news release.

“As we are celebrating our 20th anniversary, this award affirms that we are true to our mission and we are succeeding in producing the physicians Florida – as well as the rest of the U.S. – needs most. That includes our record of producing numerous alumni who now practice in rural parts of the state, especially in Northwest Florida.”

A history of training

The college – located on the western edge of campus – was established in 2000 by the Florida Legislature, and accepted its first class of 30 students in 2001. It was the first new medical school in the nation in more than 20 years. 

It has since graduated more than 1,500 physicians, physician assistants and doctoral students who now work throughout the state and across the country.

The actual training of future physicians started years before the university’s own medical school was given birth.

In 1970, the university enrolled the first students in its Program in Medical Sciences, commonly known as PIMS. The program was a collaboration with the University of Florida’s College of Medicine.

Under that arrangement, students took their first year of courses at FSU and transferred to the University of Florida to complete their studies.

It proved to truly be a collaborative arrangement among Tallahassee’s academic expertise, as faculty at Florida A&M University – which was a partner in the PIMS program – taught pharmacology classes, according to the college.

PIMS was funded by a National Institutes of Health grant and was designed to meet the