The University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, Knoxville


The History of the UTGSM

About the Graduate School of Medicine

Our History

With roots dating back to 1794, the University of Tennessee has been training medical professionals since 1911 when it was recognized as the home of the country's largest medical college, a program that not only survived, but also excelled.

The UT Graduate School of Medicine has a long history of graduate medical training. The "Internship Program" (the predecessor to a Transitional Residency Program) was the first program to be officially accredited in 1956 with the opening of the new UT Memorial Research Center and Hospital. In 1957, programs in Internal Medicine, Anesthesiology, "General Practice" (now known as Family Medicine), Obstetrics and Gynecology, Orthopedic Surgery, Radiology, Pathology, Pediatrics and Surgery received accreditation and were established.

In 1991, The University of Tennessee College of Medicine formalized its graduate medical and dental education programs in Knoxville at UT Medical Center by naming the program the UT Graduate School of Medicine. The UT Medical Center separated from the University of Tennessee in 1999 to form a 501 C3 not for profit corporation.

Today, the UT Graduate School of Medicine (GSM) in Knoxville is part of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, the statewide academic health system. The GSM is home to more than 190 residents in 12 medical and dental training programs, 12 specialty fellowships, clerkship rotations, and scores of continuing education opportunities.

We have ten academic departments with more than 400 full-time and volunteer teaching physicians, dentists, and researchers. Approximately 224 residents and fellows currently train in 15 ACGME-accredited specialty and subspecialty programs, and 16 residents train in CODA-accredited general dentistry and AAOMS accredited oral and maxillofacial surgery programs. The school, together with clinical partner, University Health System Inc.,work to make the University of Tennessee Medical Center the only academic medical center in the area.



A Timeline of Important Events in the History of Medical Education at the University of Tennessee

1794 - Charter granted to Blount College by Territorial Assembly.

1806 - Congress passes Act requiring Tennessee to establish two colleges, one of which must be in East Tennessee.

1807 - Blount College reorganized as East Tennessee College after receiving federal land grants.

1826 - East Tennessee College is moved to “The Hill” and prospers.

1840 - Legislature changes the name of East Tennessee College to East Tennessee University.

1846 - Tennessee’s first medical school, an independent school called Memphis Medical College, is launched.

1865 - East Tennessee University, having been disrupted by the Civil War, reopens after damage created by both Union and Confederate forces are repaired.

1877 - First session of the Nashville Medical College is launched.

1879 - East Tennessee University becomes the University of Tennessee.

1879 - First dental school in the South established at Nashville Medical College.

1879 - University of Tennessee adopts the Nashville Medical College as its medical department.

1889 - Tennessee Medical College is founded at Gay and Main streets in Knoxville.

1904 - Classes at Tennessee Medical College open to female applicants.

1911 - University of Tennessee’s College of Medicine, already combined with the University of Nashville, moves to Memphis. Shortly thereafter, the College becomes the largest in the U.S.

1912 - UT College of Medicine graduates three female physicians.

1912 - University of Tennessee erects a new laboratory for its College of Medicine.

1913 - The University of Tennessee obtains the buildings and equipment of four local independent medical schools for its College of Medicine in Memphis.

1914 - Medical students training in Knoxville are transferred to the University of Tennessee College of Medicine in Memphis. The buildings originally used by Tennessee Medical College, which became a part of Lincoln Memorial University in 1909, are later used for the Knoxville General Hospital.

1945 - President Harry Truman signs a bill to provide funds to states to build new hospitals.

1946 - State legislature approves a bill to build a $6 million, 550-bed hospital and isotopic research center in Knoxville.

1946 - GIs raise enrollment at UT to an all-time high of 10,000.

1956 - UT Memorial Research Center and Hospital opens, includes 14 laboratories to be used for research and is accredited to train transitional year residents.

1957 - Programs in Internal Medicine, Anesthesiology, "General Practice" (now known as Family Medicine), Obstetrics and Gynecology, Orthopedic Surgery, Radiology, Pathology, Pediatrics and Surgery and are established and received accreditation.

1957 - Dr. E. Stanfield Rogers named first Director of Research.

1958 - UT researchers begin to explore the effects of outer space on humans.

1960 - UT President Andy Holt outlines a new plan for physician training that includes continuing education programs for “near-by” physicians.

1963 - UT Research Center-Hospital in Knoxville designated as a graduate and postgraduate training center under the auspices of the administration of the medical units on UT’s Memphis campus.

1964 - Dr. Amoz I. Chernoff named Director of Research.

1965 - New $1 million research center addition opens.

1966 - National March of Dimes grant awarded to the research center for the study of birth defects.

1968 - UT’s research center is one of only fifteen sites testing L-Dopa to control Parkinson’s disease symptoms.

1968 - Knoxville newspapers carry a series of articles highlighting UT’s excellence in the research of birth defects, blood disorders, and cancer research.

1970 - Intensive Care Nursery established.

1971 - Comprehensive Health Manpower Act designed to attract physicians to locate in medically under-served areas by offering attractive loan incentives.

1973 - State’s first Clinical Education Center, predecessor to UT Graduate School of Medicine, opens in Knoxville to train physicians for rural areas.

1979 - Plans for Family Practice Center formed.

1982 - UT Family Practice Center serves more than 1,400 patients a month.

1985 - Dr. Mitchell Goldman performs first kidney transplant at UT Hospital.

1986 - First heart transplant is performed at UT Hospital.

1991 - UT Graduate School of Medicine is formed to allow residencies, subspecialty fellowships and continuing education programs to be managed in Knoxville. University Memorial Hospital is reconfigured. Dr. I. Reid Collmann is named the first Dean.

1992 - American Cancer Society names UTGSM’s Dr. Alan Solomon as Clinical Research Professor of Clinical Medicine for integrating his laboratory research on multiple myeloma with patient care.

1993 - George Kabalka, PhD, is recognized as the South’s most distinguished chemist for his research into developing imaging agents for MRI and PET scans.

1993 - UT researchers send an experiment to study anemia in astronauts aboard the Columbia space shuttle.

1993 - Charles W. Mercer, MD is named Executive Vice Chancellor for UTGSM.

1995 - Dr. Michael R. Caudle is named second Dean of the UT Graduate School of Medicine. Dr. Caudle also served as Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology 1987- 1989.

1996 - 168 resident physicians make up the largest group ever trained at UT Graduate School of Medicine..

1999 - UT Medical Center separates from the University of Tennessee to form a 501 C3 not for profit corporation.

1999 - UT Graduate School of Medicine establishes Adolescent Health/Health Education program at the Boy Scouts of America Camp Buck Toms, where resident physicians provide medical care for 3,000 scouts and others.

2005 - More than 50% of the physicians trained in Knoxville, remain in Tennessee to practice medicine.

2006 -The UT Medical Center and UT Graduate School of Medicine accepts the 49th class of physician residents while its 1,546th resident completes requirements for board certification.

2007 - James J. Neutens, PhD, is named third Dean of the UT Graduate School of Medicine.

2007 - Alan Solomon, M.D., director of the Human Immunology and Cancer/Alzheimer’s Disease and Amyloid-Related Disorders Research Program, is awarded a five-year grant renewal from the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Cancer Institute. This award represents one of the longest active grants in NIH history and is the longest running NIH grant in UT history. Dr. Solomon was awarded Professor Emeritus status in 2014 following 47 years of clinical practice..

2008 - Two new fellowships, Cardiovascular Disease and Pulmonary Disease, join a long list of specialty fellowships approved for physician and dentist education.

2008 - The UT Center for Advanced Medical Simulation opens.

2009 - Alfred D. Beasley, MD, FACP, Professor Emeritus, is recognized by the American Medical Association (AMA) for his 50-year anniversary of graduation from medical school. Dr. Beasley served as chairman of the Department of Medicine at University of Tennessee Medical Center for 30 years and was awarded Professor Emeritus in 1997.

2010 - The University of Tennessee Medical Center opens a dedicated Heart Hospital which bolsters Graduate School of Medicine fellowship programs in Cardiovascular Disease, Pulmonary Disease and Vascular Surgery.

2010 - Dr. Mitchell Goldman named first UTGSM Assistant Dean of Research

2010 - The Amyloidosis Research of Drs. Alan Solomon and Jonathan Wall is the featured cover story in the September 30 issue of Blood, Journal of the American Society of Hematology.

2011 - The Department of Family Medicine holds a groundbreaking ceremony of Phase I of a three-phase expansion designed to improve the residency training experience and allow Family Medicine's ambulatory clinic, and University Family Physicians (UFP), to restructure care delivery into a team-structured, patient-centered medical home concept.

2011- The Medical Explorations Program designed to provide high school students opportunities to shadow University of Tennessee Medical Center and UT Graduate School of Medicine medical staff celebrates its 20-year anniversary.

2012 - The Kelly L. Krahwinkel Endowed Chair for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is established.

2012 - The UT Center for Advanced Medical Simulation opens its new facility with 6,500 square feet.

2013 - UT Center for Advanced Medical Simulation earns top accreditation status and becomes the only facility in Tennessee and one of just 67 in the world to earn accreditation as a Level I Comprehensive Accredited Education Institute (AEI) by the American College of Surgeons (ACS).

2014 - Expanding upon the resources of Preston Medical Library, a new Health Information Center opens in the main lobby of The University of Tennessee Medical Center to provide health and wellness information to patients, families and the community.

2014 - New research in the Department of Anesthesiology is aimed at understanding how the brain regulates states of consciousness.

2014 - Using resources available through the Regional Forensic Center, the Department of General Dentistry launches the Forensic Dentistry Fellowship, chaired by O. Lee Wilson, DMD, the first academic-based program for dentists in the United States.

2014 - The UT Graduate School of Medicine initiates a new Advanced GI MIS Fellowship Program, considered the first of its kind, and begins training its first fellow under the direction of the Department of Surgery.

2014 - Jonathan Wall, PhD, Professor and Director of the Preclinical and Diagnostic Molecular Imaging Laboratory, receives a four-year grant totaling $1,580,808 from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases to study "Preclinical Diagnostic Imaging of Amyloid."

2014 - The inaugural University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine Alumni Reunion is held in Knoxville, Tennessee.

2014 - O. Lee Wilson, DMD, Chair, Dentistry, initiates a Dental Operating Room Fellowship, the first of its kind, to fill a growing demand for treating special needs patients, and the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery initiates a Cleft and Craniofacial Surgery Fellowship.

2014 - A major gift from lottery winner, Roy Cockrum, creates The Thomas E. Gaines, M.D. Professorship of Cardiothoracic Surgery to support research, patient care and education for the Heart Lung Vascular Institute. This gift creates the second endowed professorship for the UT Graduate School of Medicine, following the Robert H. Cole Professorship in Neurosciences.

2014 - Rajiv Dhand, MD, is named the first Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs.

2015 - Richard Obenour, MD, Vice Chair of the Department of Medicine (DOM), retires from the UT Graduate School of Medicine. Dr. Obenour was the first resident at the newly constructed University of Tennessee Memorial Research Center and Hospital in 1956.

2015 - The Department of Surgery at the UT Graduate School of Medicine adds a Division of Transplant Surgery.

2015 - Robert M. Craft, MD, long-time faculty member and former resident, is appointed Chair of the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, Knoxville. Larry C. Kilgore, MD, is named Chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the UT Graduate School of Medicine. Eddie Moore, MD, retires from his positions as Professor and Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education.

2016 - The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) approves two Department of Medicine fellowships in Interventional Cardiology and Pulmonary Disease/Critical Care Medicine, bringing the total number of fellowships to 11.

2016 - Craig Towers, MD, Professor in Obstetrics and Gynecology's Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, shows evidence that maternal opiate detoxification during pregnancy significantly improves outcomes, without putting the fetus at risk.

2016 - Gregory Blake, MD, Chair, Family Medicine, receives the Tennessee Academy of Family Physicians' Family Physician of the Year Award. It is bestowed upon an individual who exemplifies the ideal family physician and who has made an outstanding contribution to Family Medicine and to the advancement of health and medical education.

2016 - For the first time, two UT Graduate School of Medicine Anesthesiology faculty, are selected concurrently as oral board examiners for the American Board of Anesthesiology, Patrick McConville, MD, Assistant Professor and Brigitte Messenger, MD, Assistant Professor. Both are graduates of the UT Graduate School of Medicine Anesthesiology Residency program.

2016 - U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek H. Murthy meets with doctors, lawmakers and a host of clinicians and other community leaders at The University of Tennessee Medical Center to discuss and seek solutions in the opioid abuse epidemic afflicting Tennessee and the nation at large.

2016 - The University of Tennessee Medical Center is named as one of the 100 Great Hospitals in America by Becker's Hospital Review.

2016 - John Dougherty, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine's Division of Neurology, was named a 2016 Health Care Hero by the Knoxville Business Journal for Innovation in the medical field.

2016 - Daphne Norwood, MD, Assistant Professor and Transitional Year Residency Program Director, received the 2016 Laureate Award from the Tennessee Chapter of the American College of Physicians for her commitment to excellence in medical care, education, research and service.

2017 - University Anesthesiologists Announces $1.5 Million Philanthropic Commitment. The contribution will fund initiatives including educational and training opportunities for anesthesiology residents and nurse anesthetists, expanded faculty training and development, and program and equipment needs at the UT Center for Advanced Medical Simulation.

2017 - Mitchell Goldman, MD, Assistant Dean for Research and retired vascular surgeon, received the Rudolph Matas Award from the Southern Association for Vascular Surgeons for a lifetime of excellence, achievement and contributions to the field of Vascular Surgery, and service to the organization.

2017 - UT Graduate School of Medicine achieves full accreditation status without citations for its 15 residency and fellowship programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education .

2017 - W. Bedford Waters, MD, has been named the first Chair of the new Department of Urology at the University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, taking effect July 1. Urology began as a division of the Department of General Surgery in 1983 and initiated its Urology Residency Program in 2004.

2017 - The Pat Summitt Clinic opens its doors in January 2017, supported in part by a grant from The Pat Summitt Foundation, allowing the medical center to increase the capacity of Alzheimer’s patients to address the growing need in the region.

2018 - Martha Earl, MSLS, AHIP, has been named the Director of the Health Information Center/Preston Medical Library at The University of Tennessee Medical Center.

2018 - James Neutens, PhD, Dean of UTGSM since 2007, retires after a 34-year career with UT. Paul J. Hauptman, MD, is named Dean and Senior Vice President and Chief Academic Officer of The University of Tennessee Medical Center.

2018 - Dr. Neutens and Craig Towers, MD, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, were among seven health care professionals recognized as the 2018 Knox.biz Health Care Heroes.

2019 - Dean for Finance Administration Amy Paganelli is named UT Graduate School of Medicine's first Chief Operating Officer.

2019 - A "first-in-human" clinical trial is conducted at The University of Tennessee Medical Center and may lead to earlier, more accurate diagnosis for patients affected by amyloidosis.

2019 - The University of Tennessee Center for Advanced Medical Simulation is reaccredited as a comprehensive Accredited Education Institute by the American College of Surgeons.

2019 - The University of Tennessee Medical Center names Keith Gray, MD, MBA, Associate Professor of Surgery and Chief of the Division of Surgical Oncology, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer.

2019 - Jonathan Wall, PhD, Director of the Amyloidosis and Cancer Theranostics Program, is named Director of Research.

 

 


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