The classroom experience at Scholl College (FUHS)

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15+ Year Member
Jul 7, 2003
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Over the last few weeks I have taken some time to read this forum and of course the main podiatry forum. There are positives and negatives about the profession; we all know it and we can all seek them out in settings more constructive than an Internet forum. Those of you reading these forums may believe whomever you choose, but I urge all of you interested in a career in podiatry to talk to as many people (students AND doctors) as you can and then make an informed decision.
What I will discuss with you today is the student experience at SCPM, which now falls under the FUHS-CMS umbrella. I am a member of the Class of 2005 and as a result I have experienced a full year in our new facility. For those of you who may not know, FUHS-CMS built a new facility to house some of their departments and SCPM. This facility includes new classrooms, auditoriums, a student union, exercise facility, orthotics lab, and gait analysis lab. The new facility is connected to Finch's existing facility by a "skyway". The older building includes classrooms, auditoriums, labs, research facilities, a medical library, and another cafeteria.
There is also student housing available in the form of campus apartments that were completed this summer. Finch's ultimate goal is to build a student teaching clinic that will integrate each of the disciplines taught at the university. These would include podiatric medicine, medicine, and physical therapy.
Now, I have come across a lot of posts asking what the classes are like, who teaches them, etc. What I will do now is run you through the first 2 years of our curriculum at SCPM and contrary to popular belief the classes are taught by qualified professors and not disgruntled old podiatrists.

Gross Anatomy- this is taken with the MD students. The SCPM anatomy professor will now be the course coordinator over everybody who takes gross anatomy regardless of what program they are in.

Biochemistry- instructed by a professor from Rush Medical College.

Structure/Function (Histology/Physiology)- fairly long course (8 credit hours) that integrates the 2 subjects. For example, we went through kidney histology and followed it up with lectures on kidney physiology. Taught by 2 members of the full time faculty, who are excellent professors and always available for questions.

Lower Extremity Anatomy- the bread and butter of our first year. Taught by a PhD, who not only pours his heart and soul into the course and college in general, but pours them into the profession as well working diligently to advance podiatric residency training.

Microbiology/Immunology- The micro instructor also teaches Pathology. The immunology professor is a member of the faculty at the osteopathic college in Chicago.

Neurosciences- different sections are taught by our in house faculty with another series of lectures on seizures taught by a member of the faculty at the University of Chicago.

Introduction to Podiatric Medicine- Includes sections on community health, statistics, research methods, and a general introduction to the topics most important to the podiatric physician (nail pathology, diabetes, etc.)

Before I dive into our class schedule, let me note that we start seeing patients in our teaching clinic downtown at the beginning of the 2nd year.

Pharmacology- I read somewhere that a student at another school was disappointed that their pharmacology course failed to go into detail on certain classes of drugs including cardiac medications. This is not the case at SCPM. We have 3 PhD pharmacologists and 1 PharmD who teach the course. The director of science policy for the Illinois Medical Association teaches approximately half of the course. One professor from Rush University comes in to do a series of lectures on cardiac medications (his specialty), another professor from Rush does a series on anti-biotics (his speciality), while a practicing pharmacist lectures us on anti-virals and anti-fungals.

Pathology- nearly a year long course taught by an in house pathologist. We are also given a series of lectures on diabetes, gout, the arthridities, lupus, and psoriasis by a practicing podiatrist who is anything BUT disgruntled.

Peripheral Vascular Disease, Biomechanics, and Clincical Biomechanics + Sports Medicine are all taught by in house faculty and podiatrists in outside practice.

Dermatology- excellent course taught by a dermatologist in private practice, who has instructed at the college for a number of years. The students really enjoy this class.

Anesthesiology/Surgery- The anesthesiology professor is the head of the department at Finch, while the surgery section is instructed by podiatrists on the SCPM faculty.

Intro to Clinical Medicine (2nd year)/Medicine + Physical Diagnosis (3rd year)- taken with the MD students.

I just completed my 8 week summer rotation which included surgery (yes, we actually scrub in and participate), orthopedics, medicine, and podiatric medicine. We also spent time in SCPM's uninsured clinic where we worked up the patient, prescribed medicine, dispensed orthotics, and actually worked with pediatric patients. We will continue these rotations in the fall as we finish up our coursework.

So there you have it. I am in a bit of a rush, so I won't be proofreading this. I apologize in advance for any spelling or grammatical errors. Thanks for having me in your forum and I hope to contribute again in the near future.