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Black History Month

Church Health

In 1907, the University of West Tennessee College of Medicine and Surgery moved from Jackson, Tennessee to Memphis. 

It was one of fourteen medical schools established after the Civil War for the purpose of training African Americans to become physicians. In its twenty-three years of existence, it graduated one hundred fifty-five doctors, most of whom went on to practice in Memphis. After it was forcibly closed, partly due to Jim Crow, no black doctors were trained in Memphis for over fifty years.

The University of Tennessee Medical School has shown real commitment to expanding their diversity efforts. But now, Meharry Medical School, based in Nashville, is committed to establishing a Memphis campus over the next few years. Meharry, affiliated with the United Methodist Church, is one of three historically black medical schools.

Watching a child go to public school, then to college at the University of Memphis, then to medical school in Memphis, and then practice in the community he or she grew up in, is now no longer a pipe dream, but a reality we can all embrace.

This is Dr. Scott Morris for Church Health.