About the College
The College of Medical Sciences is an organizational unit of the University of Rzeszów which has been functioning since October 1, 2019. The College consists of the former Faculties: the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Physical Education.
Within the College, research and teaching activities are carried out by:
Institute of Medical Sciences
Institute of Health Sciences
Institute of Physical Culture Sciences
HISTORICAL SUMMARY OF THE COLLEGE
In Rzeszów and the Podkarpackie region, there have been tendencies and even attempts to start medical studies since the middle of the last century. On the one hand, this was related to the existing shortage of physicians in the Podkarpackie region, and on the other hand, the problems that appeared in recruitment for medical studies at the Medical Academy in Krakow, Lublin or other academic cities in Poland. Educating young people in remote centres, very often even several hundred kilometres from their place of residence, also generated high costs, which were often an insurmountable barrier for the most talented youth from the region (often coming from low-income families) to study medicine.
In 1970, thanks to the efforts of Professor Lesław Grzegorczyk and with the successful decisions of the Senate of the Medical Academy in Krakow, the Clinical Teaching Team was established. Initially, student training took place in several larger cities in the region, namely in Rzeszów, Przemyśl, Krosno and Sanok. However, there was a lack of accommodation in all these places and related problems with organizing the teaching process in different places as well as the lack of sufficient teaching supervision created obstacles. Therefore, at the request of the head of the Clinical Teaching Team - Professor Lesław Grzegorczyk, the Kraków Medical Academy created in the 1975-1976 academic year, a full-time Medical Studies for students of the IV, then V and VI years of study in the Provincial Integrated Hospital at Szopena Street in Rzeszów. This resulted in the employment in Rzeszów of several independent scientific workers - doctors, who very professionally conducted and managed teaching classes in the 80s. These were professors Andrzej Bentkowski, Emil Bryk, Radosław Cebulski, Władysław Garska, and subsequently Marek Grzywa, Stanisław Hady, Ryszard Korczowski, Roman Kurzbauer, Andrzej Skręt, Jacek Spławiński, Zbigniew Szmigiel, Kazimierz Ulewicz, Tadeusz Żaczek. So this was a team of experienced professors who had previously worked in other academic centres. At this time, 150 students of the IV, V and VI years of studies were already trained in Rzeszów. These students were transferred from the home university - the Medical Academy in Krakow - to continue their studies in the region where they lived. Professor Tadeusz Popiela - the rector at that time of the Medical Academy in Kraków - supported the activities of the Institute of Clinical Medicine, which resulted in further dynamic development. An expression of these activities was the conference organized in 1985 in Rzeszów with the participation of the Deputy Minister of Health Lesław Kryst, Rector of the AM in Krakow, Prof. Marek Sych and provincial authorities. They jointly declared that the Second Medical Faculty of the AM in Krakow would be established in Rzeszów. In order to realize such an ambitious plan, attempts were made to organize other organizational and theoretical units, which would allow to cover the education process of students already from the first year of study. It was established that in 1995, i.e. after completing the entire educational process in Rzeszów (after 10 years), students would leave the walls of the Rzeszów University as the first physicians trained in Rzeszów.
Changes occurring in the country as a result of the systemic transformation in 1989 had an impact on the decision of the Medical Academy in Krakow regarding the establishment of an independent Medical Faculty in Rzeszów (currently: College of Medical Sciences), and even a decision was made to liquidate the Institute of Clinical Teaching, which took place in 1991. This was inconsistent with previous years, precisely in 1989, when the newly built Provincial Hospital No. 2 in Rzeszów, which had been built for several years, was finally opened providing a modern didactic and scientific base of the Medical Faculty. In this way, Rzeszów lost (apparently irrevocably) the chance to obtain the right to study medicine or other studies related to medicine.
Therefore, due to the situation, the director of the Institute of Clinical Teaching, Professor Lesław Grzegorczyk, moved to work at the Rzeszów Pedagogical University (WSP) in 1992, where he participated in the teaching Master's Degree program in Physical Education. In the same year, Professors Ryszard Cieślik, Władysława Garska, Stanisław Hady and Jan Przybyłowski, as well as independent scientific workers from related fields, Professors Stanisław Krawczyk, Zygmunt Wnuk and Jerzy Piórecki joined the team. Prof. dr hab. Lesław Grzegorczyk became the first director of the Institute of Physical Education and Health, as this was the name adopted for the institute due to the participation of several professors - physicians, as well as an attempt to maintain continuity with the Institute of Clinical Teaching. In 1994, dr hab. Kazimierz Obodyński became the director of the institute and the institute joined the Pedagogical Faculty of the Rzeszów Pedagogical University.
In 1996, dr hab. n. med. Andrzej Kwolek, a specialist in neurology and rehabilitation, was admitted to the institute, which enabled the creation of the specialty of rehabilitation in physical education studies. This specialty was treated as a transitional stage to the development of an independent field of studies in motor rehabilitation, and after the name change performed by the Ministry of Health in 1997 it became physiotherapy as a medical course. Due to an increasing number of independent scientific staff from medical field, they attempted to create a separate medical faculty or Collegium Medicum at the Pedagogical University.
A tangible manifestation of these activities was the creation of the Association of Medical Professors in Rzeszów, which was registered by the decision of the District Court in Rzeszów on 20 May 1999. As a main statutory aim, the Association adopted "the organization of independent researchers in the field of medicine or holders of the scientific degree of doctor of medical sciences and the linking of their efforts to create the Institute of Clinical Teaching in the medical faculty of the future university in Rzeszów". The founding members of the Association were professors and doctors habilitated: Andrzej Bętkowski, Ryszard Cieślik, Lesław Grzegorczyk, Marek Grzywa, Stanisław Hady, Ryszard Korczowski, Andrzej Kwolek, Andrzej Skręt, Andrzej Skwarcz and doctors: Stanisław Bajcar, Jarosław Janeczko, Wojciech Kądziołka, Zbigniew Kozdronkiewicz, Sławomir Łukasik, Piotr Małek, Andrzej Pogorzelski, Wrzesław Romańczuk and Józef Rusin. Dr hab. n. med. prof. WSP Andrzej Kwolek was elected Chairman of the Association, and prof. dr hab. n. med. Marek Grzywa Deputy Chairman. Representatives of the Management Board of the Association, together with the Dean of the Pedagogical Faculty of WSP, prof. Ryszard Cieślik, presented the existing possibilities and the necessity of creating Collegium Medicum (currently: College of Medical Sciences) within the already emerging University of Rzeszów at a meeting with the contemporary voivode Zbigniew Sieczko. Thus, at the time of the establishment of the Rzeszów University in 2001, the medical community of Podkarpacie was largely prepared for further work on the establishment of the faculty.
In the course of a long process of establishing the present College of Medical Sciences, the appearance of the first "medical" major – physiotherapy – proved to be especially important. This convinced many physicians that it was possible to create medical fields of study at Rzeszów Pedagogical University (WSP) and the way to create clinical teaching (training of physicians) had to be different than it was before. Discussions carried out at the Institute of Physical Education and Health resulted in a recommendation to the Rector of WSP to create a new major – PHYSIOTHERAPY. On October 22, 1998, the Senate of WSP adopted a resolution to create the new major. In the following year, on February 19 1999, the Secretary of State in the Ministry of National Education approved the resolution of the Senate WSP and set the start of the bachelor's studies with the February 2000. On April 1, 1999, the Rector appointed dr hab. prof. WSP Andrzej Kwolek as the Rector's Representative for the establishment of the new major. As a result of numerous efforts, the President of Rzeszów, Andrzej Szlachta, gave his consent to grant (lease) for free for 3 years, for the needs of the Physiotherapy Institute, a building of the former medical clinic at Hoffmanowa Street from January 1, 2000. However, this benevolence (not the transfer of ownership) did not allow the university to obtain a grant from the ministry for the renovation of the building, since it was not the property of the university. Despite the limited resources, Rzeszów Pedagogical University carried out a very efficient adaptation of the building and on February 17, 2000, the inauguration of the new major – physiotherapy took place, and from February 18, classes in the full-time mode began with the first 55-person group of students. Previously, after the appropriate competitions, prof. dr hab. n. med. Marek Grzywa and dr hab. prof. WSP Andrzej Pluta were hired for the needs of physiotherapy from December 1, 1999. Moreover, the structure of the Physiotherapy Institute (initially the Department of Physiotherapy) was also developed, and the basic group of assistants and administrative staff was employed. The Director of Institute of Physiotherapy was dr hab. prof. WSP Andrzej Kwolek, the scientific deputy was prof. dr hab. n. med. Marek Grzywa, and after his resignation dr hab. prof. WSP Sławomir Snela, whereas the deputy director for didactic was dr n. med. Halina Gregorowicz-Cieślik.
On June 7, 2001, the Sejm of the Republic of Poland adopted the Act on establishing the University of Rzeszów. This day is celebrated annually as the Rzeszów University Day. Following a visit conducted by the State Accreditation Commission in 2001, the Institute of Physiotherapy was granted the right to conduct studies in this field at the first and second degree studies (master's studies). The efforts of the first and second rector of the University of Rzeszów, Professor Tadeusz Lulek and Professor Włodzimierz Bonusiak, were fulfilled in 2003 when the University received permission to create a nursing and midwifery major. The representative of the rector for creating this major was dr hab. n. med. prof. UR Sławomir Snela and after obtaining the degree of habilitated doctor dr hab. n. med. Wrzesław Romańczuk, who also became the first director of the Institute of Nursing and Midwifery. His merit was to invite eminent professors of medicine from Warsaw to work at UR, which allowed to meet the requirements of the State Accreditation Commission and to obtain accreditation for teaching at these majors at the first degree level. After the death of professor Wrzesław Romańczuk, the director of the Institute of Nursing and Midwifery was prof. dr hab. n. med. Paweł Januszewicz, and his deputy prof. dr hab. n. med. Józef Ryżko and MSc Monika Binkowska-Bury. The head of the Nursing Department was prof. dr hab. n. med. Józef Ryżko, and the head of the Midwifery Department was prof. dr hab. n. med. Andrzej Skręt.
The conditions for creating the Faculty of Medicine (currently: College of Medical Sciences) were met at this time. By the Senate resolution of the University of Rzeszów of May 27, 2004, the Faculty of Health Science was separated from the Pedagogical Faculty. The Minister of National Education and Sport issued Order No. 13 on July 4, 2005, establishing the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Rzeszów. The first dean of the new faculty was elected prof. dr hab. n. med. Ryszard Cieślik, and the associate deans were dr n. med. Małgorzata Marć and dr n. o kult. fiz. Teresa Pop. The Faculty Council of Health Sciences in 2005 decided to change the name to the Faculty of Medicine. The UR Senate approved this decision by resolution of November 24, 2005. The new name of the faculty came into force on April 1, 2006.
At that time, the Faculty of Medicine (present: College of Medical Sciences) consisted of three medical majors: Physiotherapy, Nursing And Midwifery. High interest in medical majors and huge needs in this area favoured the further development of the youngest faculty at the University of Rzeszów. Therefore, the Faculty Board of the Faculty of Medicine on February 8, 2007 adopted a resolution to launch three new study programs at the Medical Faculty of the University of Rzeszów from the academic year 2007/2008. These were: Emergency Medical Service – full-time and extramural first degree studies, Public Health – full-time and extramural first degree studies, Public Health with specialization in Electroradiology – full-time first degree studies. Existing needs and interest allowed for the next decision to launch Dietetics field of studies from the academic year 2011/2012. At that time, the Faculty of Medicine UR (currently: College of Medical Sciences) employed 8 full professors, 10 habilitated doctors - associate professors of UR, 47 doctors of sciences, 1 physician and 27 masters. It had its own, mostly renovated, two-storey building at Warszawska Street for the Physiotherapy major, which was perfectly equipped thanks to winning and carrying out a project within the Integrated Regional Operational Program, while classes for the Nursing and Midwifery took place in the academic refectory allocated to the faculty and in both provincial hospitals.
In October 2006, prof. dr hab. n. med. Ryszard Cieślik died – the dean of the Faculty of Medicine at that time. The Rector of UR appointed prof. dr hab. n. med. Józef Ryżka, , to perform the duties of the dean. After carrying out the supplementary elections in December 2006, dr hab. n. med. prof. UR Andrzej Kwolek became the dean of the Faculty of Medicine.
In October 2007, the dean of the faculty prof. Andrzej Kwolek obtained the title of Professor of Medical Sciences, and the diploma was received from the hands of prof. Lech Kaczyński – President of the Republic of Poland.
In the term of the university authorities in 2008-2012, the authorities in the former Faculty of Medicine were as follows:
Dean: prof. dr hab. n. med. Andrzej Kwolek
prof. dr hab. n. med. Andrzej Skręt - Deputy Dean for Science,
dr n. med. Małgorzata Marć - Deputy Dean for Nursing, Midwifery, Emergency Medical Services, Public Health and Dietetics
dr n. o kult. fiz. Teresa Pop - Deputy Dean for Physiotherapy.
At the time, the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Rzeszów (currently: the College of Medical Sciences) had 14 full professors, 12 habilitated doctors – associate professors of UR, 168 doctors of sciences, 3 physicians and 50 masters. On the conditions of a contract work, 212 teaching staff were employed. In 2011, the Faculty of Medicine was granted the right to award the degree of doctor of Health Science.
In the term of the university authorities in 2012-2016, the authorities in the Faculty of Medicine were as follows:
Dean: dr hab. n. med. Artur Mazur, prof. UR
Deputy Dean for Science: dr hab. n. med. Bartosz Korczowski, prof. UR
Deputy Dean: dr hab. n. o zdr Monika Binkowska-Bury
Deputy Dean: dr inż. Julian Skrzypiec
At the end of 2015, long-standing efforts of various distinguished workers of the University of Rzeszów and representatives of the medical community of Podkarpackie region found their happy ending in the launch of medical studies in Rzeszów. The first, historic group of about 100 students started their studies in the 2015/2016 academic year. Soon after, at the beginning of the next academic year, the organizational preparation, the academic staff's competences and the necessary infrastructure required for the education of future medical practitioners were positively evaluated by the Polish Accreditation Commission. In the years 2014-2017, the Polish Accreditation Commission's visits also included other courses run at the Faculty of Medicine (currently: the Faculty of Medical Sciences), i.e.. Nursing, Midwifery, Physiotherapy, Dietetics. In addition, in 2014 the Midwifery course and in 2015 the Nursing course were visited by the National Accreditation Council for Nurses and Midwives. All the controls ended with a positive evaluation. Teaching in the major Medicine is associated with the dynamic development of the College, the expansion of the number of independent researchers and the creation of new clinical departments. In 2019, the Faculty obtained the right to do doctoral studies in the medical science discipline.
In the term of the university authorities in 2016-2019, the authorities in the former Faculty of Medicine included:
Dean: prof. dr hab. n. med. Artur Mazur
Deputy Dean for Science: prof. dr hab. n. med. Bartosz Korczowski
Deputy Dean: dr Katarzyna Dereń
Deputy Dean: dr Justyna Wyszyńska
On October 1, 2019, the College of Medical Sciences was established as a result of the transformation of the UR Faculty of Medicine due to the restructuring of the University of Rzeszów.
The current College currently consists of the following units:
- Institute of Medical Sciences
- Institute of Physical Culture Sciences (created from the transformation of the former UR Physical Education Faculty)
- Institute of Health Sciences
- Centre for Innovative Research in Medical and Natural Sciences
- Medical Simulation Centre / Center for Medical Simulation
- Podkarpackie Athletics Centre