Eastern Virginia Medical School (EVMS) is a public-private medical school in Norfolk, Virginia. Founded by grassroots efforts in the southeastern part of Virginia known as Hampton Roads, EVMS is not affiliated with an undergraduate institution and coordinates training through multiple medical centers in the Hampton Roads region. EVMS campus includes the 555-bed Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, the region’s only tertiary level 1 trauma medical care facility, and the 212-bed Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters, a regional pediatric referral care facility and only stand-alone children’s hospital in the state. EVMS is the first institution in the US to have produced a viable fetus through in vitro fertilization. EVMS is most known for its reproductive medicine, simulation/standardized-patient education as well as research in pediatrics, geriatrics, diabetes, and cancer. In addition, EVMS is well known for its leadership in community service and medical missions, as evidenced by faculty and alumni responsible for the founding of Operation Smile, Physicians for Peace, Global Brigades, and CONRAD.
In 1824, Thomas Jefferson remarked that Norfolk would be an ideal location for a medical school branch of his alma mater, The College of William & Mary, albeit for its less than desirable climate.
In the 1960s the metropolitan area of Southeastern Virginia known as Hampton Roads recognized that the region did not have enough physicians to support its growing population. In an attempt to close the gap, area leaders decided to found a regional medical school, to both attract physicians from outside areas and to produce “home-grown” practitioners. It was thought that a University medical center operating in conjunction with previously operating regional health care facilities would effectively end the shortage and more importantly, bring a bevy of experts and specialists to the area.
In 1970 fundraising by the EVMS foundation began the collection of funds for the creation of EVMS. Before acceptance of its first class, more than $17 million had been donated from community and business leaders. In 1973, Eastern Virginia Medical School accepted its first class. The following year, the EVMS Office of Graduate Medical Education was established to coordinate residency and fellowship training programs. EVMS has since graduated its 30th class of physicians, with one in four of all local physicians having some connection to the University and, additionally has produced many other medical professionals to satisfy the ever-growing need for health care workers. In the spring of 2008, the Commonwealth of Virginia approved appropriating capital outlay funds to EVMS to allow it to increase its doctoral student enrollment by 30% and its physician assistant program by 60%. When this expansion is completed, the total student enrollment will rise to approximately 1,000.
Approximately 5,000 applicants apply to the Eastern Virginia Medical School’s MD program every year for a targeted class size of 150. The class size of the MD class of 2012 is 146 with 51% of the class as in-state and 49% as out-of-state. Following its commitment to train Hampton Roads residents, 21% of the entering class originated from Hampton Roads.
In 2016, EVMS implemented the Care Forward curriculum that teaches medical students through a system-based approach. Community services play a big part of the curriculum as students have several tracks of service projects that eventually lead to a specific keystone project to be completed before graduation.
In 2016, MD class of 2018 achieved an average USMLE Step 1 score of 236 with national average at 229, standard deviation of 20. This is the highest score a class has ever achieved in the history of the school, and faculty and students partially credit this due to the school’s usage of tests made by National Board of Medical Examiners as the only performance evaluation platform.
In 2016, EVMS MD program is ranked 60th in U.S. News & World Report “Best Medical Schools: Primary Care,” and Physician Assistant program was ranked 26th in the nation.