College of

Dean's Updates

A Message from Dean Marsha D. Rappley, MD

January 27, 2012


Claudia Holzman, Professor of Epidemiology in the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Michigan State University in 1976, her Master's of Public Health degree from the University of Minnesota in 1986, and her PhD degree in epidemiology from the University of Michigan in 1996. Dr. Holzman has been involved in reproductive and perinatal research, primarily focusing on the areas of preterm delivery, brain injury in neonates, birth defects and vaginal infections.


We hosted nearly 200 people in Flint this week, thanking our partners and the community of Flint for helping us to build an exciting program focused on public health. Our longstanding health system partners—Hurley, McLaren and Genesys, as well as the visionary Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, have come together to craft a research and education program that will be directly connected to the well being of the Flint community. We are looking forward to new partnerships with Kettering University, UM-Flint, Mott Community College and Baker College. And we are working to bring collaborations with other colleges of MSU to Flint, as well. 

We will have 50 medical students per year in Flint, and we hope to begin recruiting five-to-seven faculty whose research will use the tools of public health, epidemiology, health services and outcomes and population health to examine and advance knowledge of health matter relevant to the people of Flint. As of this writing, more than 1000 members of the community are providing input to define the most compelling health issues. We are currently exploring options for the Block S in downtown Flint. This is a singular opportunity to bring engagement with the community to our education and research. Our graduates will have a rich understanding of what it means to be a member of the community and accountable to the people and institutions that make our education possible.


The MSU Board of Trustees approved today the purchase of property in downtown Grand Rapids in close proximity to the Secchia Center, Van Andel Research Institute, Spectrum Health and Saint Mary's Health Care. We are also ready to begin, should we receive notice to proceed, on the state-approved construction of the new biomedical and engineering research building near the MSU Clinical Center and Life Science Building on the East Lansing campus.  These are both exciting opportunities to grow the MSU research portfolio across the state over the next several years.


We successfully completed the expansion of our student body from 100 to 200 entering students over the past five years. We continue with our transition out of Kalamazoo. Our last Kalamazoo class will start their third year in July 2012. We continue to grow stronger and more deeply rooted programs in each of our six communities as we now send more students than ever before to Flint, Grand Rapids, Lansing, Marquette, Midland and Traverse City. We do not expect to further increase class size. We continue to grow faculty in cooperation with our partners, including the MSU HealthTeam. Our programs will be broader through partnerships with other MSU colleges and more deeply rooted through partnerships with the education, health and business organizations of our communities. Our future growth, expansion and investment will be strengthening our education and research programs.

Marsha D. Rappley, M.D.

Dean and Professor