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Mace & Crown

Providing Student News to Old Dominion University Since 1930

Mace & Crown

Providing Student News to Old Dominion University Since 1930

Mace & Crown

‘Seamless Integration’ Promised in Confirmed ODU-EVMS Merger

President Brian O. Hemphill and other executives at an early meeting to discuss “future collaboration.” Credit to Old Dominion University Photo Department.

On Thursday, Sept. 14, Brian O. Hemphill, Ph.D, and Alfred Abuhamad, M.D., the Presidents of Old Dominion University and Eastern Virginia Medical School, respectively, announced that their merger will officially be moving forward. The Virginia General Assembly wrote to include funding for the integration in an amended budget that was signed last Thursday, Sept. 7,  by Governor Glenn Youngkin. 


EVMS, as stated by Abuhamad in a press release, “is one of the few remaining standalone medical schools in the country.” Despite this unique status, he said that the school is excited by the opportunity to expand [their] available resources, expertise and community reach so that [they] can continue to innovate and lead the way in medical and health instruction.”


In the past, EVMS has resisted full affiliation with an undergraduate institution. However, in 2012, the College of William & Mary explored “the possibility” of a merger. The “William & Mary School of Medicine” concept was scrapped in favor of a research partnership. 


ODU proposed a merger with EVMS in 2020, but the Medical School’s board opted for a vote of “no confidence” and asked for a “hard reset” on discussion. Official negotiation was publicly announced as “in progress” inJuly of 2022 with a letter to students and faculty.  


Hemphill and Abuhamad said that the decision to merge came from “the strong support of [their] two institutions joining forces to better serve [their] communities and the Commonwealth,” as well as their “students, faculty, and staff.” 


According to their press release, a merged ODU and EVMS, “would create the largest portfolio of health sciences degrees in the commonwealth.” The united institutions would include a College of Health Sciences, a School of Nursing, a School of Health Professions, a School of Medicine, and O.N.E. School of Public Health, which is a joint program between EVMS, Norfolk State University, and ODU. 56 health science programs will be offered, including 18 that will be exclusive to ODU/EVMS in Virginia. 


ODU and EVMS have yet to publicly comment regarding how the merger may affect students, tuition, staff, faculty, or campus life. 


The merger will occur on Jan. 1, 2024. Presidents Hemphill and Abuhamad promised a “seamless integration.”

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Justice Menzel
Justice Menzel, Editor In Chief
Justice is an English Major with a concentration in Journalism in his Sophomore year at ODU. Outside of Mace & Crown, he writes and publishes freelance pieces and has directed a feature-length documentary. Contact him at

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