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University of South Alabama to increase physician graduates with new $200 million College of Medicine building

by John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter | December 14, 2023
The new Frederick P. Whiddon College of Medicine building at the University of South Alabama.
Earlier this month, the University of South Alabama began the groundwork for building a new college of medicine building that will increase the number of physicians they can produce to reduce the shortages within the U.S. and provide more space to conduct and accelerate research and innovation.

With the $200 million, 250,000-square-foot Frederick P. Whiddon College of Medicine building, the university will expand its number of first-year medical students from 80 to 100. In the future, it will be made to accommodate 120 first-year students.

Along with the College of Nursing, the Pat Capps Covey College of Allied Health Professions, the Health Simulation Building, and the Charles M. Baugh Biomedical Library, the facility will make the university home to more than 500,000 square feet of campus facilities dedicated to healthcare education and research.

"By national metrics, this medical school produces high-quality physicians that stay in the state, helping meet the needs in primary care as well as in rural and underserved areas at an affordable cost,” said Dr. John Marymont, dean of the Whiddon College of Medicine and vice president for medical affairs, in a statement.

The Whiddon College of Medicine is one of 158 accredited M.D.-granting institutions in the U.S. and one of only two in the state. More than 1,139 of its graduates practice medicine in Alabama.

Among the new facility’s investors are former Alabama U.S. senator Richard Shelby, who granted it $60 million in federal appropriations; the USA Foundation, which contributed $30 million; and the State of Alabama, which gave $50 million.

The City of Mobile has pledged to donate $10 million, as has Mobile County for $5 million, and Alabama Power, The Caring Foundation of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama, the Bedsole Foundation, the Daniel Foundation, and others.

The University is seeking an additional $30 million to complete the project, and gifts may be pledged over five years and will be recognized through naming opportunities in perpetuity.

The facility will be completed in 2026.

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