Grand Bahama Island - Three Ross students new to Grand Bahama stand outside the interim campus at the Ross University School of Medicine at Seahorse Plaza on Monday, January 12th, 2009. Photo: Lyndah Wells
Grand Bahama Island – The future looks bright for Grand Bahama as well as for the Ross University medical students who attended their first day of school on Monday, January 12th at the interim campus at Seahorse Plaza in Freeport.
The focus for day one was orientation and the beginning of classes, as all the students gathered in their conference area equipped with overhead screens, as the faculty and administrative team were introduced as well as policies and procedures explained.
“While these students are already familiar with the academic program, there is a lot to adjust to in coming to a new facility and a new country,” explained Sandi Cutler, Executive Administrator and Ross Vice President for Planning.
“Many students arrived over the weekend and are still sorting out the tasks of getting established, such as setting up bank accounts, finding places to get their exercise, and getting used to the transportation system.”
Senator Kay Forbes-Smith, Parliamentary Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister was on hand to welcome the students as well as Eric Christiansen, Chairman of the Port Group Limited.
Grand Bahama Island - Nearly 200 students gathered with faculty and administration on the first day of classes at Ross University medical school at the interim campus at Seahorse Plaza on Monday, January 12th, 2009. Photo: Lyndah Wells
The students will spend their first week settling in, meeting their instructors, and will take part in preliminary classes.
Dr. Mary Coleman, Dean of the Ross Medical School, detailed the students' academic program.
"Our students are in a very rigorous academic program that combines many hours of directed study with on campus supervised team-based and problem-based learning activities."
"Our average student studies seven days a week, often from early morning until well into the night," Coleman added.
The Ross facility will generally be open from 6 am until midnight each day to accommodate student needs.
Local police officers have been hired to ensure the late night safety of Ross students and the security of its facilities.
With a lot to digest on the first day, and plenty of questions, the students and staff of Ross University had a full day of meetings and classes that occurred in many areas simultaneously.
Grand Bahama Island - Sandi Cutler, Executive Administrator and Ross Vice President for Planning leads a presentation during an orientation session on opening day at the Ross University School of Medicine at the interim campus at Seahorse Plaza on Monday, January 12th, 2009. Photo: Lyndah Wells
The students expressed great enthusiasm about living on the island. Stories came in to the Student Services Director, Meg Osman that many of the landlords on Grand Bahama have gone out of their way to welcome the student tenants. Rides from the airport, welcome gift baskets, tours around town and a first dinner out are just a few examples of the wonderful hospitality the students are receiving from their landlords.
The neighbouring shops in Seahorse Plaza immediately felt the affect of the student's presence as many students were seen buying coffees, food and snacks, or household needs.
Opening day at Ross University Bahamas is a notable milestone and a great accomplishment, as the new university was only announced in July of 2008.
Another set of Ross students will be arriving before summer making this only the beginning of many more milestones to come.
was founded in 1978 and is a provider of medical and veterinary education offering doctor of medicine and doctor of veterinary medicine degree programs. The School of Medicine is located in Dominica, West Indies, and the Freeport, Grand Bahama campus recently opened in January 2009. The School of Veterinary Medicine is located in St. Kitts. Ross University's administrative offices are located in North Brunswick, NJ. Ross University has more than 9,000 alumni with M.D. and D.V.M. degrees. www.rossu.edu