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UH's Medical School welcomes inaugural class of students

The university selected 30 students out of more than 1,700 applicants. Each received a $100,000 four-year scholarship from an anonymous donor.

HOUSTON — Construction on the city of Houston’s first medical school in almost 50 years is underway.

The University of Houston’s College of Medicine’s $80 million state-of-the-art medical school building is set to open in 2022.

However, it’s inaugural class already started school this week.

Brittanie Cockrell is three days into her first year as a medical student, and she said she loving every second of it.

“We’re the OG’s. That’s what I like to call us,” Cockrell, a UH medical student, said.

Cockrell is one of 30 students selected to be a part of the UH’s College of Medicine inaugural class.

Credit: KHOU

Cockrell grew up in Port Arthur and was inspired to be a healer by her grandmother. She’s now on the road to become a primary care pediatrician.

“You know helping patients learn the importance of taking care of their health before they have a problem,” Cockrell said.

The College of Medicine will focus on tackling the shortage of primary care doctors.

Credit: KHOU

Once they’ve graduated, Cockrell and her classmates will care for those living in underserved communities.

“Our mission is really to attack health disparities within the Third Ward and Greater Houston area and basically just try bridge the gap between the healthcare field and the community,” Cockrell said.

COVID-19 has changed the healthcare industry but Cockrell remains committed to helping those most at risk.

“You know it could be my parents. It could be anyone in my family so I definitely think it’s a driving factor for me to, not to say I want to rush these next four to eight years, but I definitely want to get out there and be on the frontline helping protect and assist my community,” she said.

More on the College of Medicine here.