Ross University relocates students from Dominica to Tennessee

Ross University’s campus in Portsmouth

More than 1,400 students, faculty and staff from Ross University School of Medicine (RUSM) plan to relocate temporarily to Knoxville, Tenn. to continue their program of study after Hurricane Maria damaged the medical school’s home country of Dominica in September.

Currently, students are completing their fall semester medical sciences curriculum on a cruise ship ported off the island of St. Kitts and plan to begin their winter semester at the new facilities.

RUSM plans to relocate to facilities owned by Lincoln Memorial University (LMU). LMU, based in Harrogate and with operations in Knoxville, will provide the necessary operational capacity and the technical capabilities to support RUSM faculty, students and staff.

“While the island of Dominica continues to rebuild, we are pleased to have forged this arrangement with an outstanding university like LMU,” said William F. Owen, MD, dean and chancellor of RUSM. “The continuity of our students’ education and their academic programming is our highest priority, and we are pleased to work with LMU to make these extraordinary facilities available.”

RUSM plans to continue to use its own medical sciences curriculum and faculty while making use of the LMU teaching and office facilities, including an anatomy lab. Efforts are underway by RUSM and Adtalem Global Education to acquire all necessary regulatory approvals and finalize other details.

“Lincoln Memorial University is proud to be able to assist Ross University School of Medicine under these extreme circumstances. As an institution with a strong commitment to combating health care shortages in Appalachia and beyond, there is a synergy in providing the students and faculty of RUSM a home away from home while they rebuild from this fall’s devastating hurricanes,” said LMU Chairman Autry O.V. “Pete” DeBusk. “Our recent purchase of the spacious west Knoxville property enables us to step up to help RUSM. Over the next year, LMU will continue to develop its plans to further expand its health offerings in Knoxville. In the meantime, we’re pleased to accommodate RUSM with an excellent facility that is well-suited in size and scale to meet the needs of a medical school curriculum.”

Lincoln Memorial University operates three extended learning sites in the greater Knoxville area including the LMU-Duncan School of Law, nursing at Physicians Regional Medical Center and business, education and nursing at the LMU Cedar Bluff Extended Learning Site.


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  1. Norman C. Ronald
    November 23, 2017

    Dear Dr. Ronald:

    While we are not in a position to advise on your specific concerns, we can share that on October 18, 2017, the U.S. Department of Education published a notice in the Federal Register advising that it had decided, on a temporary basis, not to apply certain regulatory requirements to foreign educational institutions that are unable to operate in their home countries due to the effects of Hurricane Irma or Hurricane Maria. It is our understanding that this action will allow a foreign institution to operate in another country, including the United States, through June 30, 2019, contingent upon the foreign institution receiving approval from the U.S. Department of Education after providing the following:

    The plan and timeline for the temporary relocation, including details of the program offerings and an agreement with any institution at which the affected institution will temporarily relocate;
    Approval of the plan and timeline for the temporary relocation from…

  2. Real Truth
    November 10, 2017

    Wake up people! Even if the Ross administration plans to return, it won’t be anytime soon!
    What many of you fail to realize is the fact that it is most of the students who vow never to return to face another disaster like hurricane Maria! Simply put,….. A university is nothing without students!

  3. ms gumbds
    November 10, 2017

    Rosss has a lot of infrustructural damages to likewise landlards and it is useless to justreplace roofs, windows and door. Proper rebuilding needs to be done so their centres to withstand at least a category hurricane. I am so sorry for portsmouth and the landlords and the many that will lose jobs. One the other hand once ross settle in tenesse I am not seeing them returning to dominica in a hurry. Will students want to come down here too. Landlords need to find an alternative and start renting to locals so that a little income will be generated.

  4. DA4evah
    November 10, 2017

    Wow Dominichen. Think. 1400 students and staff need ALL SERVICES (not just accomodations) up and running as close to perfect as possible before Ross can resume business in DA. Ask the landlords if they will all be ready for January. Ask the laundries if they will be ready, the food shacks, the supermarkets, the insurance companies paying off claims, the building material suppliers. THINK!!! They are better off with the extra time although it will be painful for the whole economy. As far as at TN is concerned,did you all actually read the whole statement? LMU is an existing university with some space to spare TEMPORARILY. Ross can not relocate to the US and remain an offshore school. This is a refugee situation and can only be temporary. Let’s get to working to be ready for May 2018. We have a little more time. Let’s just cut the cr*p and get to working. BTW I am a Ross Alum and have an inside scoop. Stop embarrassing Dominica with the empty box chatter.

    • Larry Grell
      November 10, 2017

      Tell us about the inside scoop,my dear Ross Alum………

  5. Leonsha
    November 9, 2017

    All you too ape.ross leaving Dominica has nothing to with doctor skerrit.bull****** all you talking

    • Anonymous
      November 10, 2017

      Maybe it is precisely because he is a fake doctor, who can not be trusted.

  6. Wrong is wrong
    November 9, 2017

    Fellow Dominicans we will continue to suffer a lot if we don’t all stand together as a people of God and condemn wrong no matter who does it. No doubt this present government is very crooked, wicked and ungodly and unless we address them our country will suffer tremendously. Ross takes the security of their students and faculty very seriously. The government of Dominica takes national security as a big joke, no matter what they say. Here is a good example. Just last week we had a situation where the PM was in Brussels, police commissioner was out because Valarie was acting and then the president was out. So all three were out at the same time. But who you think was acting president? I will not call name because of DNO. But it was a former police commissioner whose conduct while in of office was in question and the then president requested a public independent inquiry that resulted in him being forced to resign in interest of safety. Yet Skerrit had that same man act as president?

    • Wrong is wrong
      November 9, 2017

      You all would remember the nature of allegations back then. In the interest of national safety the public inquiry felt the man should vacate his office. Yet Skerrit and Charles Savarin felt that same person was the safest and best person to hold the highest seat in Dominica, at a time when Skerrit, Savarin and carbon were all out and less than two months after Maria and the week of our Independence? That’s carelessness to the max . Dominica is very unsafe and foreign nationals that believe in the rule of law should feel very unsafe here. So I don’t blame Ross for waiting until life is back to normal before opening their doors again. Please don’t say I washing our dirty laundry in public because the problem is not where it is washed but rather how it got dirty.

      • Wrong is wrong
        November 10, 2017

        DNO I thank you for posting part 2 of my comment but you did not moderate part 1, on which part 2 is based. Without part 1 people are lost and don’t understand what I am talking about although I was careful not to call names, though I should have done because it is a fact that we all know about. It is a fact that a former Police commissioner was asked to vacate his office because of certain complaints against him by senior officers. It is a fact that the then president saw it fit to conduct an independent inquiry that found the former commission at fault and as a result was asked to vacate his office. It is a fact that the alleged allegation had to do with national security. It is a fact that at a time when we under a state of emergency due to Maria and PM Skerrit, President Savarin, and Commissioner Carbon were all out at the same time. It is a fact that the same former commissioner that was forced out due to NATIONAL Security somehow was made ACTING President by Skerrit & Savarin

      • Wrong is wrong
        November 10, 2017

        When these things are happening in any country it is a sign that we have a serious national security problem and such thing is a concern to good citizens as well as foreign investors like Ross. Both Skerrit and Savarin should be forced to resign because they are not concerned about national security as long as their political interests are protected. WROG IS WRONG and we cannot make wrong right all of a sudden

  7. AP George
    November 9, 2017

    I hope Ross stays. But indeed they could have been planning an exit strategy from before Maria, now Maria makes it so easy.
    Same thing with DCP… I’m sure it was Colgate-Palmolive plan to buy out the competition in Dominica to enable profit in other locations. So Erika was their shining knight.
    For too long Dominica neglected to attract other medical schools or offshore businesses. They should have even enticed Cuba to open a branch of one of their universities in Dominica to serve the southern Caribbean. I’m sure there are lots of schools or offshore companies looking for a nearshore (near USA) location as well.
    I mean, how many passports can you sell to fund your development? Dominica needs a good tax base, and now with so many people leaving it’s going to be worse.
    So more begging and more loans.

  8. Jax. GB.
    November 9, 2017

    This will come down to, all about the money. If Ross finds it cheaper to relocate elsewhere, trust me they will. Mr Skerrit will have to offer some really good incentives to get these people back.

  9. Norman C. Ronald
    November 9, 2017

    Not so sure they can pull this off. There are rules that say the basic sciences must be taught where the school physically exists. Remember they tried to set up a second location on Grand Bahama some years ago.
    That did not meet certain U.S. standards for offshore medical schools. Ross quickly evacuated from Grand Bahama. This attempt may cause the students to loose the loans so necessary for them to complete medical school.

    old ross prof

    • Let The Truth Be Known - Original
      November 9, 2017

      You do know many people studied abroad and some returned to practice/work in Dominica. Therefore, exactly what do you mean otherwise?
      Consider too, there were foreign students at Ross University, some who are also from the US. These would have graduated and returned to their country to work. They need to complete their schooling.
      It appears that Ross University is a reputable University. After graduating, the students could practice worldwide.
      You need to do some research into your thoughts and words.

    • no
      November 10, 2017

      That’s the only consolation right now. The rules are different for off-shore schools. God is good, they will return.

      • Dominican
        November 10, 2017

        They may wish too but what about present and potential future students? They and their parents & guardians decide whether they will want to locate to Dominica for their studies. Ross does not dictate to them and right now Dominica can not be deemed a favourite location, we have to be honest with ourselves.

  10. So help us lord
    November 9, 2017

    This time I am going to have to pray because I am confused. Let’s pray with me: Oh lord we cant understand what is happening because as you know it is very hard to understand and believe anything that has to do with our PM. But one thing we ask of you is that you let us know in no uncertain ways that PM Skerrit (one man government) did not buy Ross University just as he (government) but Cocoanut Factory after Erika and seeing Ross is an American business just as the coconut factory was Dominicans are really worried. We find it strange that PM in September, told us he met with Ross and they assured him they would be back in January. But now we reading this news and they not even giving a tentative date of return. That thing is so worrying so please HELP US amen

    • Let The Truth Be Known - Original
      November 9, 2017

      Why worry about it? Be positive. If Ross University is to resume in January, it will. If not, it will find a way to have the students complete their education. There is nothing wrong with that.
      Ross University is doing all that could be done to have those students continue their education be it overseas. Under the circumstances, this is good enough. Give Ross University your blessings.

  11. Double Trouble
    November 9, 2017

    Trust me Ross is just using their head to frighten a weak and vulnerable government we have. They realize our government has no one with a brain and the PM had to buy a doctorate to see if he can gain respect and attention so Ross is putting him on the test to get Skerrit to give them more incentives to stay. They know Skerrit needs them to keep the villas running so they just playing their game. They know is a bunch of toys in box ministers we have so why not use them? So I guess now they going to demand that Skerrit gives them the license to fully run the apartments so students will not have to rent from locals. I might just be joking about this last one but don’t think it is too far fetch

    • Let The Truth Be Known - Original
      November 9, 2017

      Talk about people reading the mind of others as if they are God and know it all. What a grave error. Assumptions are not always correct.
      You do not know anything. Keep quiet and live and let live. Cease your insinuations which benefit no one; not even yourself.

  12. Baron Sugar and Aloes
    November 9, 2017

    Well Baroness tell us to go and suck salt and Skerrit blaming countries like USA for the passage of Hurricane Maria due to climate change.

    So we will suck salt and the USA will shone us… A Roseau Landlord with property at Picard tell me Ross ask back for rent money from October to December 2017 and for the security deposit. She say how she had already used that money to pay the bank and buy new mattress and air condition and she do not know how she going to get all that thousands of dollars to give back Ross…

    We if what she say is true… then she too will have to suck salt too. And can anyone confirm if is true Ross ask landlords to return the students rent money and security deposit? :lol: :lol: :lol:

    • Trying to help
      November 9, 2017

      Sorry,If you have paid rent and the premises are not habitable,you are entitled for thr refund and deposit.
      The state of Tennessee will give plenty of tax breaks to keep Ross,the reason why they locate to Dominica.

    • Ex. Pat
      November 10, 2017

      Its very true, they have asked for rent money and deposit back.

  13. Dominican
    November 9, 2017

    I cannot see them coming back in a hurry. Dominica can not be a favourite location right now for these students and their parents .Even if Ross stayed I would expect student numbers to go down making their enterprise in Dominica unprofitable.
    It was a struggle already to get to Dominica and that certainly has not improved.
    I am extremely worried about the owners of rental apartments being able to service their debts to their lenders, leave alone being able to pay for the necessary repairs to their properties as a result of hurricane Maria. I am sorry Ian, but you are just a bumptious fool, pretending that everything is fine in your patch of the garden.

  14. The Crab boy
    November 9, 2017

    And independence day I heard Ian Douglas saying how Possie booming and asked people that looking for a modern town that booming they should come to Portsmouth? He smoking nou or he on a special prescribed drug? Maybe is because Skerrit fooled him a forth time he talking so much cr*p

    • Shameless
      November 9, 2017

      Ian needs his head closely examined. Where is the good old Dr. Tahyid when you need him? Ian would make the perfect patient for this once well known mad doctor in our midst.

      Assertive like D Trump! :twisted:

  15. Possie Direct
    November 9, 2017

    Oh me oh boy! Is this the beginning of the end? I thought Ross was supposed to reopen by mid January 2018. But to see them invest in Knoxville something is telling me that they might be on their way out of Dominica. no matter what may happen later, this move is clearly a sign of NO CONVIDENCE in the cabal, who thinks all Ross needs is electricity and roofs back up. However Ross made it clear in a very diplomatic way that they don’t believe Dominica is able to put things in place to ensure the safety of their students and an environment conducive to learning. Boy we might soon see “For Sale” signs on those Villas but don’t worry cuz Skerro will ensure government buys them for persons affected by Maria.

  16. Daryl joseph
    November 9, 2017

    More bad news
    For those who looted the school just imagine now being unemployed

    • Shameless
      November 9, 2017

      Another reason why police chief Daniel Carbon and his deputy Valarie MUST be fired. How do you overlook the possibility of looting happening at such an important institution after a hurricane? Where was the police? Where was/ is the police disaster management plan for Portsmouth. Where were the Superintendent (Northern Division) and Inspector in charge immediately after the hurricane?

      They could not secure the country but made sure they had a parade shouting left-right-left right-right-left at the Punjabi doc request so he could stand there and lie to the people. Ian self there like a koonoomoonoo while his constituency lost its livelihood. God help us all if Ross feels comfortable in Tennessee because is adios Dca. And then, choo-nou-tout paytay.
      Mr. Blackmore we need answers! :twisted: :twisted:

      Assertive like the rod of Moses! :twisted:

    • Jahchild
      November 9, 2017

      they looted the school? you can’t be serious!

    • The Crab boy
      November 9, 2017

      @ Daryl, what you mean by more bad news for those that looted the school? I hope you are not trying to say that non students were not involved in looting. I was in Da and courts on the EOL highway as well as Whitchurch got blows from none Dominica students. Don’t think looting was only done by some poor Dominicans because everybody both great and small helped themselves. That’s why I believe gov’t should not charge anyone if they cannot charge everyone

      • Daryl joseph
        November 10, 2017

        The crab boy it’s bad news for the entire country with a move of such magnitude every one will feel the pinch.
        Taxi drivers
        1400 plus family members that would paying departure tax plus custom tax. And the sad part is my understanding is that the employees were involved with the looting.

      • The Crab boy
        November 11, 2017

        @Daryl, not only were employees involved in looting but students too. Nobody talks about them but it is a FACT! They gave courts a serious blow; they took bicycles, Tv and you name it and they just passed on to their friends and locals. Boy everybody looted not just the few targeted by the police

  17. Irma
    November 9, 2017

    Hmph! The writing is on the wall people!!! They not coming back…nect thing you going to hear the RUSM campus was sold for billions of dollars to some obscure company that we’ve never heard of…just wait…Irma told you all so eh.

  18. Emile Dominique
    November 9, 2017

    DNO ….do they plan to return ?

    • Anonymous
      November 9, 2017

      Emile, why should they?

    • Hot & Cold
      November 9, 2017

      @Emile if Dominica has a better government they will return; but if is that same cabal don’t expect Ross to return and let me also add that as goes Ross so goes Seaborne Airline because Ross brought them here and kept them here against their will. I await more thumbs down but you will hear later

  19. Martel
    November 9, 2017

    Due lack of government support in ensuring that the supporting services such as internet infrastructure is restored and assistance given to landlord to assist in repairs to ensure dat Portsmouth is ready by Jan 2018 the company had no choice.
    Secondly FLOW is doing nothing in possible only Domlec u seeing that is working

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