Fresno State's Castro Says Talk Of New Valley Medical School Should Include UC

Feb 27, 2017

Fresno State President Joseph Castro says he wants to see any new effort to build a public medical school in the San Joaquin Valley be a collaboration between the UC and CSU systems.

Last month, Assemblymember Joaquin Arambula introduced a bill in Sacramento that would authorize a new medical school at Fresno State. But the state’s master plan for higher education calls for medical schools to be the domain only of the University of California.

Speaking with Valley Public Radio, Castro says he agrees with Arambula that the valley deserves a public medical school to help address the shortage of physicians here, but…

Castro: “I’ve expressed to him that my preference as president of Fresno State is that we would do that in collaboration with the University of California."

For years, discussion about a medical school in the valley has centered around UC Merced, but Arambula’s bill doesn’t mention that campus. He told Valley Public Radio last month that's due to Merced’s focus on increasing enrollment and campus expansion by 2010.

Still, Castro says he sees working with the UC system as the best way to bring a local school online quickly and affordably. 

Castro: “The University of California has strong clinical experience and background and facilities, we could do the basic science part of it, and I think together it could be much more efficient.”

UCSF-Fresno currently runs a graduate medical education program in the valley. Before becoming Fresno State’s President in 2013, Castro was a vice chancellor at UCSF.