Transition accomplished, KCMS is now WMU School of Medicine

contact: Cheryl Roland
| WMU News



KALAMAZOO-- The transition of the Kalamazoo Center for Medical Studies to the Western Michigan University School of Medicine is complete.

In early February, the KCMS Board of Directors approved the merger of KCMS and its official transition to the WMU medical school to occur July 1. As part of its transition, KCMS operations, programs, personnel and facilities become part of the WMU School of Medicine Clinic operations. Personnel remain at their current locations at 1000 Oakland Drive and at the psychiatry clinic located on the Borgess campus. All patient care services provided to the community remain unchanged.

According to Dr. Hal B. Jenson, founding dean of the medical school, 63 full-time KCMS faculty members with expertise in teaching and clinical care have been appointed to the WMU medical school. Over the coming months, other clinicians, basic scientists and experts from the community who desire to serve as medical school faculty will be appointed. The medical school will also recruit additional faculty to Kalamazoo.

"The WMU School of Medicine is extremely fortunate to gain the expertise of the faculty and staff of KCMS as they become the core of the new medical school," Jenson says. "Through KCMS, Borgess Health and Bronson Healthcare have almost 40 years of collaboration in providing undergraduate, graduate and continuing medical education in Kalamazoo. We are building on this solid foundation to create a new medical school in Kalamazoo that aspires to be among the nation's best."

Jenson also announced two new leadership positions in the medical school: William Fales, M.D., assistant dean for clinical applications, and Charles Zeller Jr., M.D., assistant dean for continuing medical education. Both are fellows of the American College of Emergency Physicians.

 William Fales

Fales will be responsible for the third- and fourth-year curriculum of the medical school, which includes the clinical clerkship training held in area hospitals and other outpatient sites. He is an associate professor of emergency medicine, director of pre-hospital care and disaster medicine and is co-director of the Simulation Center. Fales has also served as the Kalamazoo County EMS medical director since 1993. In 2002, he was appointed by the state of Michigan to serve as the regional medical director for healthcare preparedness, covering the nine counties of southwest Michigan.

Fales earned his bachelor's degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a medical degree from Jefferson Medical College, and he completed his emergency medicine residency at Geisinger Medical Center. In 2009, Fales became the first emergency physician to complete the prestigious Naval Postgraduate School's Center for Homeland Security and Defense Executive Leaders Program. Over the past 10 years, Fales has secured over $13 million in federal and state research and programmatic grants. His research interests include cardiac resuscitation, EMS and disaster medicine, medical simulation and pediatric emergency care.

Charles Zeller, Jr.

Zeller will be responsible for the medical school's continuing medical education program. He has served as the director of the KCMS continuing medical education program for the past 36 years and is also an associate professor of emergency medicine. Zeller earned his undergraduate degree from Indiana University, received his medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine and completed his residency at Michigan State University Kalamazoo Center for Medical Studies. Zeller is a past president of Southwest Michigan Emergency Services PC and has served on the boards of multiple professional, charitable, benevolent and community foundations.

About the WMU School of Medicine

WMU's new School of Medicine is a partnership involving the University and Kalamazoo's two teaching hospitals, Borgess Health and Bronson Healthcare. Planning has occurred over the past four years; fundraising, accreditation work, and curriculum development for the school are well underway. Expecting to welcome its first class in fall 2014, the school is a privately funded initiative housed at WMU, which is one of the nation's 139 Carnegie-designated public research universities and one of only five such universities in Michigan. In March 2011, WMU announced a foundational gift of $100 million for the medical school from anonymous donors.