Mercer University and Medical Education in the Chattahoochee Valley
Everyone appreciates a rags-to-riches story, and Mercer University certainly has a great one to tell! Founded in 1833, the initial school (then named Mercer Institute) consisted of two log cabins on a farm. Tuition was $35 for the entire year, board was an additional $8 a month, and students were required to supply their own bedding, furniture and candles. Over the ensuing almost two centuries, the school has grown to be reclassified as a doctoral university ranked in the top tier of national universities by U.S. News & World Report.
Exciting plans –
Today, the school is celebrating the announcement of plans for a future medical school campus to be built on riverfront property in Columbus, GA. The land is a generous gift from TSYS/Global Payments; and in a news release Troy Woods, Chairman of the Board for Global Payments, was quoted:
“TYSYS and Global Payments are proud to make this significant gift to Mercer University for the benefit of the entire Chattahoochee Valley and the broader medical community.”
TYSYS/Global Payments express goal, to benefit the community through investment in medical care, is kindred with Mercer Medical School’s own mission: to educate physicians and health professionals to meet the primary healthcare needs of rural and medically underserved areas of Georgia. This goal of fostering the development of community responsive health care leaders is one that another Columbus born business, West Georgia Eye Care Center, has supported for years.
WGECC support –
WGECC physicians serve on the Mercer Medical School advisory board as well as on the advisory board for the CSU School of Nursing. More directly, WGECC welcomes residents from Columbus Regional Family Practice, and medical students from Mercer and other area medical schools into the clinic, receiving valuable instruction in Ophthalmology from experienced specialists.
Bright future –
The ripple effect of Columbus’ support for the new Mercer Medical campus is yet to be known; however, if it compares to the growth the school has seen since it’s humble beginnings, it will prove a worthy investment!