Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine to celebrate public grand opening

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The Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine is Utah’s newest medical school. The college will open their doors to the community at their grand opening celebration on Saturday, March 9 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The college plans to show the public their facility, including their patient simulation area. Patient simulators are medical simulators made to simulate real-life medical issues and emergencies.

The Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine in Provo, Utah. The college opened in 2021 and moved into this new building in 2024. (Photo courtesy of Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine)

Patrick Murphy is the director of Medical Simulation at the Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine. He said patient simulators can do just about anything.

“They have heart sounds, lung sounds, bowl sounds, chest rise, all the same pulses that we have. And we can have them do all sorts of different issues, like get pneumonia and have a heart attack,” Murphy said.

The school has had children, female and male simulators. Murphy calls their two male simulators the twins because they look exactly alike.

“The simulation is really rewarding to see some of these students go from not sure they even picked the right path to by their fourth year being confident in what they’re doing,” Murphy said.

Something unique about Noorda is that they teach simulation the very first year of medical school, according to Murphy.

“We are trying to be very forward thinking and adapting new technologies,” Murphy said.

Attendees can see some of these new technologies at the grand opening. There will be patient simulator demonstrations, escape rooms with fake patients to diagnose, a mini-med school with kid activities, a virtual reality tour of the facility and food trucks.

Schyler Richards, vice president for Institutional Advancement, explained the Noorda College of Osteopathic Medicine officially opened in 2021 as was a soft opening at another location. They accepted their first group of 90 students while they waited for construction to finish.

“We always had the goal of being in this facility. We just had to wait for it to get built,” Richards said.

Richards said the City of Provo has welcomed them with open arms.

“What we offer to the community is, number one, what will soon be the state’s largest medical school. And we offer a place for more of Utah students and people from out of the region to pursue their dreams of becoming physicians,” Richards said.

Three classes of 415 total students are currently enrolled. Richards said the college hopes to reach full enrollment in the next couple of years, which would be 800 total enrolled students.

Richards and Murphy both look forward to the grand opening. Murphy hopes the celebration will give the community an opportunity to learn more about medicine.

“People in the community seeing what we do here will actually help the community know what kind of healing they would want to have,” Murphy said.

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