Steven Halm, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine
Steven J. Halm, Des Moines University Dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine

Welcome to Des Moines University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM)!

I applaud your interest in pursuing a career in the health sciences – and we recognize the hard work and persistence you have put into your education and training so far.

DMU will help you develop your purposeful journey in medicine and the health sciences. Whether you plan to directly care for patients, manage groups of health care providers, discover research options, lead medical teams and organizations, or teach students your clinical knowledge and skills, we will help you realize your dream of service to others.

The faculty and staff of the College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM) at Des Moines University recognize that these unprecedented times have impacted the traditional timeline and procedures for applying to medical school. Therefore, I assure you that our Admissions team and College faculty are committed to continuing our custom of conducting a holistic review of all applications.

Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) see patients, prescribe medications, perform surgeries, and deliver babies in hospitals, medical centers, and offices across the United States and overseas. Whether they are primary care providers or specialists, DOs use all the standard tools of modern medicine, but also have additional therapeutic modalities with which to care for their patients. Osteopathic Medicine is a whole-person approach that emphasizes the body’s interconnectedness. Osteopathic physicians are trained to use a hands-on approach called Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) for patients, in addition to using traditional diagnostic and therapeutic techniques. OMM enables physicians to treat their patients with the appropriate combination of medical procedures, medication, and manipulation. This form of integrated treatment can often result in immediate relief and increased speed of healing.

Founded in 1898, DMU has a rich history of being the second oldest osteopathic medical school in the country with more than 14,000 living alumni who practice in all environments, including large university hospitals, small rural clinics and in all medical and surgical specialties. We live our mission of “educating diverse groups of highly competent and compassionate health professionals.” Today, we are reaching into the future by pursuing a curriculum that supports evidence-based medicine, innovation, interactivity and experiential learning – all integrated with the highest level of humanism and compassion that is at the heart of becoming a great osteopathic physician. Our nine graduate degree programs in medicine and the health sciences also enable our osteopathic students to interact and learn from other future health care leaders in a collaborative and stimulating environment.

I encourage you to consider seeing how a DMU education in the health sciences can set you on a path for success in your chosen field of service. Here are just a few of the reasons we know students choose DMU as their educational partner:

  • A record of consistently high, first-time pass rates for COMLEX board exams.
  • Clinical training that develops professional and communication skills.
  • A private health professions-focused institution that fosters team-based, interprofessional learning.
  • An institutional commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion training to foster cultural competency to serve people of all backgrounds.
  • Faculty who care deeply about students and are committed to their success.
  • Outstanding student support services including tutoring and supplemental learning resources.
  • A rich array of student club and community volunteer opportunities.
  • Great qualify of life options in Iowa’s vibrant capital city of Des Moines.
  • Joining more than 14,000-respected alumni, who enjoy a lifelong connection to the University.

I invite you to review our offerings, visit our campus and meet the faculty, students and staff of DMU. I am certain you will quickly sense our family atmosphere and supportive culture that fosters the highest quality results.

Your goals and aspirations of becoming a physician are important to us, and we are dedicated to making your experience as meaningful as possible. On behalf of our faculty and staff, we will be honored to receive your application and look forward to getting to know more about you. I thank you for allowing our COM family to be a part of your journey.

“DOs are trained to look at the whole person from their first days of medical school, which means they see each person as more than just a collection of organ systems and body parts that may become injured or diseased. When the human being is viewed in light of osteopathic principles the perception of the health-disease continuum changes. Osteopathic principles allow the physician to consider all aspects of the patient, not just the symptoms. The osteopathic physician sees the integrated nature of the various organ systems and body’s capabilities for self-regulation and self-healing. These principles acknowledge the importance of the musculoskeletal system and its role in health and disease. This holistic approach to patient care means that osteopathic medical students learn how to integrate the patient into the health care process as a partner.”  

The Philosophy of Osteopathic Medicine – AACOM

Steven J. Halm, DO, FAAP, FACP

Dean's Office Staff

Jennifer Beaty, Des Moines University Specialty MedicineJennifer Beaty, M.D., FACS, FASCRS
Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education and Student Advancement
Craig Canby, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic MedicineCraig Canby, Ph.D.
Associate Dean Academic Curriculum and Medical Programs
Paul Schenarts, Des Moines University Specialty MedicinePaul Schenarts, M.D.
Associate Dean
Leslie Wimsatt, Des Moines University ResearchersLeslie Wimsatt, Ph.D.
Associate Dean for Academic Assessment, Quality and Development
Matthew Henry, Des Moines University Master of Sciences in Biomedical Sciences ProgramMatthew Henry, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean for Pre-Clinical Education
Wayne Wilson, Des Moines University ResearchersWayne Wilson, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean for Assessment and Research
Kaitlin Dallman, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic MedicineKaitlin Dallman
Administrative Assistant
Matthew Drilling, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine Academic AffairsMatthew Drilling, M.Ed.
Medical Education Specialist
Rachel Hotopp, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic MedicineRachel Hotopp
Examination Coordinator
Haylee Marner-OsmonsonHaylee Marner
Administrative Assistant
Shelley Mitchell, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic MedicineShelley Mitchell
Student Advancement and Graduate Medical Education Coordinator
Paula Secker-Johnston, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic MedicinePaula Secker-Johnston
Administrative Assistant
Nia Vassilonikolidakis, Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine Academic AffairsNia Vassilonikolidakis
Senior Administrative Assistant, COM Dean

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