Twenty-six incoming freshmen from across the midwest have been accepted into the Yours to Lose – Advanced Medical School Acceptance Program, which will launch its first class at the start of the Fall 2017 semester.

An exclusive partnership with the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, the program allows a cohort of Missouri Southern students to be admitted to KCU’s new Joplin medical school at the same time they are accepted to MSSU. As pre-med students, they will obtain their bachelor’s degree in biology during an accelerated, three-year course of study before seamlessly transitioning into their first year of medical school. The program will not require them to take the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).

“This program adds a fantastic dimension to what Missouri Southern offers to these future physicians,” said Dr. Richard Schooler, Dean of the School of Health Sciences at MSSU. “We feel that this program, along with other tracks, makes Missouri Southern the place to come for pre-med education.”

Prospective members of the cohort visited campus this spring for interviews and to learn more about Missouri Southern.

“The intent of this program was to do something special to attract high-performing students who wanted to go into medicine to Missouri Southern,” said Schooler. “What’s unique about this program is it’s designed around that student … who, from Day 1, know they’re going on to medical school.”

Scholarships for students in the Yours to Lose program received a boost in December, thanks to a generous donation from the Joplin Tomorrow corporation.

Formed following the devastating tornado of May 22, 2011, the non-profit was developed with the backing of Sen. John C. Danforth to accept donations and provide low-interest loans to businesses recovering from the disaster. Approximately $1.6 million was raised from donors across the country, and 24 loans were approved by the Joplin Tomorrow Board of Directors for businesses to rebuild and expand.

With their work complete, the board voted to transfer its remaining $700,000 in assets to be used for scholarships for future medical students.