Roseman University of Health Sciences began with the idea from founder Dr. Harry Rosenberg that pharmacy education should and could be better, more effective, and capable of producing highly competent graduates, who would be sought after by employers regardless of the job market. His belief in this idea was so strong that he moved from California to Nevada in 1999, and with $15,000 rented a 900-square-foot office in Henderson to begin what was originally called the Nevada College of Pharmacy (NCP). It would soon become one of the most innovative, creative, and cost-effective pharmacy schools in the nation.
It was a bold move. There hadn’t been a new college of pharmacy started in over 50 years that was not part of an existing institution. There were a lot of obstacles for such a project—financing, obtaining IRS non-profit status, incorporating, finding adequate facilities, gaining accreditation, obtaining licensure from the Nevada Commission on Postsecondary Education, and much more. To assist in this endeavor, Dr. Rosenberg enlisted the support of the Nevada pharmacy community, contacting leaders in pharmacy organizations such as chain pharmacy managers, hospital pharmacy directors, pharmacists leading home health companies, and the Nevada State Board of Pharmacy. These individuals became the nucleus of the eventual Nevada College of Pharmacy Board of Trustees, and many are still valued members of the Board today. With the help, support, and advice of these caring leaders in the pharmacy community, the Nevada College of Pharmacy began to take shape.
They developed a curriculum (which is still in use today) that emphasizes a student-centered, active learning environment where students participate in experiential education from the very beginning of the program. Rather than semesters or quarters, the curriculum is organized into blocks. The single course schedule helps students focus on each individual topic, and also emphasizes active participation in the learning process by incorporating of a variety of hands-on activities in addition to the traditional lecture format. These early hands-on practical experiences enhance and support the didactic curriculum by allowing students to see, feel, and understand what is presented in the classroom in a real-life setting. After restructuring the curriculum into the block format, Dr. Rosenberg realized that a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree could be completed in three years, rather than the traditional four, making the Nevada College of Pharmacy one of the most affordable private colleges of pharmacy in the nation.
The inaugural class of 38 students entered the Nevada College of Pharmacy in January 2001, and by 2002 the class size had more than doubled because of the NCP’s reputation for quality education. Just one year after it began, the NCP rented a new facility more than 30 times larger than the original space to accommodate the rapid growth, and less than three years after it opened, the NCP moved again to the 100,000 square foot campus on Sunset Way in Henderson, where it is today.
But the growth did not stop there. In 2004, the Board of Trustees approved changing the name of the institution to the University of Southern Nevada to reflect the intent to expand degree offerings beyond the PharmD program. That year a Master of Business Administration (MBA) program was developed, and the first dual degree PharmD/MBA program started in fall 2005. The dual degree program prepares Doctor of Pharmacy graduates for future jobs in pharmacy administration, and provides an advantage over other job seekers when they graduate. Today the MBA program also offers a standalone Master in Business Administration degree and a dual AEODO/MBA degree.
In 2006 the College of Pharmacy extended its PharmD program to a new campus in South Jordan, Utah.
A College of Nursing opened at the Nevada campus in 2006 and the Utah campus in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program. In 2010 the Nevada campus also began offering a 14-month Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program for professionals who want to change careers.
The University became fully accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) in September 2008.
The College of Dental Medicine (CODM) began in 2007 with a post-doctoral combined Advanced Education in Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics/Master of Business Administration (AEODO/MBA) Residency Program at the Henderson campus. In February 2009, the AEODO/MBA enrolled nine residents in its first class and has grown since then. A new four-year Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) program at the South Jordan campus enrolled its inaugural class in August 2011, and now accepts 82 students per year.
The University’s Board of Trustees voted in January 2011 to change the name of the institution from University of Southern Nevada to Roseman University of Health Sciences to reflect the regional expansion of the institution.
In December 2013, the Board of Trustees of Roseman University of Health Sciences unanimously approved a plan to develop an allopathic medical school in Summerlin, Nevada. On January 29, 2014, Roseman University’s College of Medicine submitted an application to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) to begin the accreditation process for the planned College of Medicine. On October 13, 2015, the College of Medicine learned that it has been approved as a candidate for accreditation by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME), authorizing an LCME survey visit for consideration to receive preliminary accreditation status—a major step forward in the development of a non-profit, private, LCME-accredited medical school in Southern Nevada.
The creation of the College of Medicine, offering an MD degree, is a natural evolution for the University and reinforces its commitment as a transforming force in the most vital areas of health care education. The future College of Medicine complements the University’s mission to advance health care education through its innovative educational model and to positively impact the health, education, and wellness of the communities it serves. It offers a tremendous opportunity to build clinical practice sites that will allow Roseman to become a major provider of critical health care services in the region, with emphasis on underserved and rural areas.
In November 2013, Roseman University completed a merger with the former Nevada Cancer Institute Foundation that expedites Roseman’s planning for the College of Medicine by providing a facility, the Ralph and Betty Engelstad Research Building in Summerlin, which has been home to Roseman researchers for the past several years through a lease agreement. The merger secured the facility, laboratories, and equipment they need to continue their ground-breaking research not only in cancer, but also in other life-threatening diseases like diabetes, obesity, and neuro-degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Today, Roseman University has Colleges of Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing and Dental Medicine, an MBA program, and over 1,600 students in two states. As Roseman continues to grow, it remains true to the vision and ideals of Dr. Rosenberg, providing the highest quality education with innovative and effective instruction, and graduating competent professionals in healthcare and business fields.