Dear Class of 2023 Student Doctors,

Welcome to Touro University California College of Osteopathic Medicine (TUCOM). We look forward to working with and for you! Academic excellence, scientific rigor, personal and professional growth are the goals for each of us this year. Please see below for what was included in the Welcome Packet.

Mandatory  Orientation:

All new students are required to attend the Fall 2019 Orientation; see the schedule below.



Matriculation Readiness Checklist:


Student Resources Page:

Please bookmark the Student Resources Page that you will use frequently. Located off the com.tu.edu main webpage, you'll click on the Student Resources tab on the left. There you will find a ton of invaluable resources, many of which are mentioned below.

The Curriculum:

The Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Dr. Walter Hartwig, has created a video speaking of "Your Competency-Based DO Curriculum". See it here.

Getting Ready for Classes:

Please be aware that your school day is typically very full. Your time in classes will generally last from 8:00 am-5:00pm Monday-Thursday and from 8:00 am -3:00 pm on Fridays with a 12:00 pm-1:00 pm lunch break every day.

Classes and/or labs meet every day. You will usually have at least one and often two or three labs each week.  Please note that your schedule may vary significantly due to campus events, federal or Jewish holidays, or any number of other variables. It is critical to remember to check your online schedule daily. Here are the preclinical course schedules. You'll need to scroll through the dates to get to August. 

The Academic Master Calendar for 2019-2020 is available here.

Canvas Platform:

Please make sure to become familiar with Canvas, our online education platform, by taking the tutorial course called “Canvas Guide for Students” this link will work for you once you are entered into Canvas which will be around June 27th.

Additional Academic and Research Opportunities:

See the links below for more academic information that may be of interest to you:

  1. Research Opportunities
  2. Global Health
  3. Program Electives

Prior to arriving, it is recommended that students review basic biological concepts. Basic Biological Pathways, DNA, RNA transcription, translation, and protein synthesis, etc. are topics that will be reviewed at a fast pace so it is useful for you to have a background in this. Depending on your level of familiarity with the above topics, it may be to your benefit to review some of them following the links below:

  1. For those of you who may need a basic overview of immunology you may review this video.
  2. Here's an excellent overview of medical biochemistry.
  3. A two-part video on genes, enzymes and diseases can be found here for Part 1 and here for Part 2.
  4. A two-part video on pharmacology can be found here for Part 1 and here for Part 2.

Study Method and Strategies:

From the first day of class, expect to be fully immersed in medical content and materials. Before coming to campus, try to refine your study method and strategies, plan for time management and get logistical issues like housing, commute, etc., out of the way. Check out the student life page for help with these things. One or two weeks of distraction from your program may derail your academic performance. Be ready to share your strengths with others and serve as a role model and as a resource for your classmates. Each of you has something positive to teach and also learn from others.

We highly recommend completing the “Learning how to Learn” online course before you start classes. It has helped many students in the past; it’s free and can be done at your own pace.


The book list includes books for fall and spring courses. You should plan to have your fall books by the start of classes and expect that faculty will assign readings and will test from the required materials early in the semester. 

For some of the books, on-line sources are available and are noted. Also, while you may receive suggestions about other books that students find useful (e.g., board review books), these do not substitute for the primary texts that faculty require. 

Information regarding the books you will need is available on our website: http://www.tu.textbookx.com/institutional/index.php#

Medical Instruments:

Here is a list of medical instrument requirements. Faculty, staff and a medical equipment representative will be available at Orientation to demonstrate products and accept your equipment orders if you haven’t turned them in already. Orders accepted through this program will not be billed to you until your financial aid is disbursed.

Technological Requirements:

You are required to have a laptop computer with these requirements.

The COM uses computerized testing for most exams. Here are instructions on how to download and install Examsoft’s Examplify. You will receive an email from ExamSoft to set-up your account in late July. All students will be required to have the software installed prior to arriving on campus.

You may email Touro's IT Department at servicedesk@tu.edu for further information.

Dress Code:

You will be expected to have appropriate Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM), Doctoring and Anatomy laboratory clothes for your first labs. Please see COM's Dress Policies here.

Internet Services and Social Media Policy:

As an educational institution, TUCOM recognizes that Internet-based services can support the student’s academic and professional endeavors, but TUCOM is also aware that if not used properly these services can be damaging. Both in professional and institutional roles, students, faculty and staff should follow the same behavioral standards online as they should follow offline, and, are responsible for anything they post to a social media site regardless of whether the site is private (such as a portal open to only the TUCOM community) or public. These same laws, professional expectations and guidelines for interacting with students, parents, alumni, donors, media and other college agents apply online as they apply offline.

Recognizing the benefits and risks associated with using these services, TUCOM has developed a policy to provide guidance to students, faculty and staff of TUCOM. In brief, these are the main points to keep in mind when using Internet services and social media:

•Protect restricted, confidential and proprietary information
•Respect copyright and fair use
•Touro logos may not be used for endorsements
•Respect property
•Touro can track Internet usage, as well as review the content of the usage
•Adhere to the Terms of Service of any and all social media and Internet services used

Violations of this policy, like any other Touro Policy, are governed by the Touro Code of Conduct Policy or other applicable policies. Any disregard of Touro policies that are impacted in any way by this policy shall be considered violations and may be grounds for discipline, including termination of employment or dismissal from an academic program.

Accommodations and Excused Absences:

If you have any medical/physical problems that will affect your participation in lab, you are required to bring this to the attention of the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Dr. Binkerd, so that we can make appropriate accommodations.

Absences from required sessions may be allowed only if excused by the Associate Dean of Preclinical Education, Dr. Velasco. Only absences complying with the excused absence policy may be excused. Excused absences are requested online by filling out the Excused Absence Request Form here.

Wellness, Academic Accomplishment, Resilience and Mindfulness (WARM):

WARM was created in 2016 by TUCOM students and faculty with the objective of developing these areas as a part of a strong professional identity, including coping strategies to lower the risk of burnout among medical students and future practitioners.

WARM has six two-hour scheduled events integrated into the curriculum where you will be able to attend jointly with second-years. You may review WARM here.

Mental Health:

One of the main objectives of your Osteopathic Medical Education program is to develop the values and skills needed for you to pursue your optimal physical, spiritual and mental health. We should all strive to make your medical program the best time of your life! However, medical education can be stressful and we should be ready to seek help and help others as needed. Please review the Distressed Student Response Protocol here.


The COM has a Mentorship Program where we pair you up with COM Faculty. You'll officially meet your mentor at the Mentorship Lunch scheduled for Thursday, August 8th. Here's more information about the Mentorship Program.

Preliminary Assignments:

Below are preliminary assignments that are not required to be completed before the start of the school year, but you are encouraged to get a head start.

You will receive additional instructions by the respective Course Instructors via email concerning these assignments in early July.

  1. OSHA/HIPAA course –due by August 30th
  2. Medical Jurisprudence - self-study - due by September 13th
  3. Dry Bone to Living Man Assignment- to be submitted to Canvas - Due Oct. 2nd (this can be started already)


Transitions Course:

COM has a Transitions Course to help with ease of transition into the program. Its focus is on study methods, anatomy and biochemistry. It will take place from July 29th to August 2nd from 9am- 1pm. It will be offered to no more than 15 students. Please fill out this form if you are interested in being considered to attend this course.


https://www.facebook.com/groups/559864251186573/ is a Facebook page that the Class of 2022 students have created especially for you! There you can ask your classmates for advice and interact with them.


Please do not hesitate to contact us at any time for questions and support, particularly regarding readiness to start the program or any personal issues; below you will find our contact information. Please direct questions about contents of this message to yvetteelizabeth.carrillo@tu.edu or 707-638-5256.

TUCOM faculty, staff and administrators look forward to working with you. We do hope you are having a great summer and eagerly await your arrival on campus.



H. Eduardo Velasco, Associate Dean for Preclinical Education on behalf of the Deans, Faculty and Staff