A partnership between Rowan University and The Cooper Health System, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University (CMSRU) opened in summer 2012 in Camden. It was the first new medical school in New Jersey in more than 35 years and the only four-year M.D. degree-granting medical school in southern New Jersey. CMSRU is a proudly mission-driven school focused on developing highly skilled and socially conscious physician leaders who value a patient-centered, team approach to health care. Its innovative curriculum provides students with small-group, self-directed learning and early and continuous patient care experiences beginning in the first year of medical school.
The charter class of CMSRU graduated in May 2016. One month later, CMSRU received full accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, the accrediting body for U.S. allopathic medical schools. Today, there are approximately 400 medical students in four classes enrolled at CMSRU. CMSRU students bring a wealth of diverse life experiences, and all share the drive to become successful physicians and the passion to effect change in their communities.
CMSRU’s medical education building is located at the corner of Broadway and Benson Streets in Camden, NJ, in the heart of the Cooper Health Sciences Campus. The six-story building includes large and small learning and study spaces, research and anatomy labs, administrative offices, and student wellness spaces. In 2019, CMSRU moved its Clinical Simulation Center from the medical education building to the newly constructed Joint Health Sciences Center – a collaborative space for researchers and educators from Rowan, Rutgers University-Camden, and Camden County College. The Joint Health Sciences Center is located at Broadway and Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard.
CMSRU has been listed among the “Top 10 Most Competitive” medical schools for admission in U.S. News and World Report, and was the recipient of the 2019 Spencer Foreman Award for Outstanding Community Engagement, one of the most prestigious awards presented by the Association of American Medical Colleges. Renowned physician, educator and researcher Annette C. Reboli, MD, is the dean of CMSRU.
Settled in the 1600s, Camden has a long, prominent history in the State of New Jersey. Founded by the Quakers, Camden was once a city where early European settlers and native Lenape Indian’s lived in harmony. When the City of Philadelphia was established across the river, Camden became a popular city for trade and commerce by way of ferry via the Cooper River. Several of these ferries were owned and operated by members of the Cooper family and would continue as such for over one hundred years.
In the late 1800s, William Cooper sold his portion of the city, now known as Lanning Square, the home of Cooper Heath System and Cooper Medical School of Rowan University. This area would soon become populated by families rather than businessmen due to its location and affordable pricing. The row homes built then are still present today.
Today, Camden is rising, thanks in large part to investment from its educational and medical institutions, including Cooper University Health Care, Rutgers University, and Rowan University. Camden also boasts a vibrant waterfront, with attractions like Adventure Aquarium, BB&T Pavilion, and the Battleship USS New Jersey bringing thousands of visitors into the city each year. Camden is also home to the Philadelphia 76ers practice facility, and the world headquarters for Subaru and Campbell Soup Company. Businesses, large and small, are opening throughout the city, helping Camden become a great place to live, work and play.
While Camden continues to improve, it is still a city where basic needs such as housing, food, health care, safety and education go unmet for many residents. By choosing to be a “mission-driven” school, CMSRU has pledged to help close this gap. It does this by admitting students who care deeply about improving the world around them and who have the courage to make change happen. By working, living, studying, and volunteering here,CMSRU students, faculty and staff are helping make Camden better. Camden is our classroom... Camden is our home.