Cape Fear Valley CEO Michael Nagowski and Methodist University President Stanley T. Wearden

Our Mission & Vision


The mission of the new medical school aligns perfectly with the mission of Methodist University. The focus of the medical education program will be on training medical professionals for underserved populations, which is a perfect match for our service-focused mission. In non-metropolitan counties in North Carolina, growth in physicians-per-capita has been slow. Access-to-care issues remain concerning in many rural and underserved places. The University’s proposed medical school will be perfectly positioned to address this deficiency: Studies have shown that physicians tend to choose practice locations based on where they completed their education – 67.3% stay in the region where they both attended medical school and finished their residency.

The proposed medical school will focus on a health-systems approach, one that views healthcare as an evidence-based system of related factors that contribute to patient health – not just biological health, but psychological and sociological elements as well. This philosophy of medical education fits well with Methodist University’s longstanding liberal arts tradition.


To prepare our graduates to be socially accountable, community-engaged, evidence-based, compassionate, equity-focused physician leaders who will contribute to mitigating health disparities and improving health outcomes in southeastern North Carolina or wherever they may practice.  


To shape a model of community-engaged health promotion and exceptional healthcare, serving as an example for the nation.


  • Humility 
  • Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion 
  • Community Engagement 
  • Social Accountability 
  • Interprofessional Collaboration 


  • To educate a diverse population of expertly trained medical doctors attentive to the needs of rural and underserved populations. 
  • To become a national leader in interprofessional, team-based medical education. 

Pictured above: Cape Fear Valley Health CEO Michael Nagowski and Methodist University President Stanley T. Wearden sign an agreement with an intent to found a Methodist University medical school on the Cape Fear Valley campus.