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After a military career and 'stint in Vietnam,' ETSU faculty member finds home on campus

Brandon Paykamian • Mar 7, 2019 at 8:15 PM

Doug Taylor, the associate dean of admissions and records at East Tennessee State University’s Quillen College of Medicine, was born and raised in Morristown and came to ETSU as a student in the mid-1960s.

Back then, he majored in “campusology,” which he said quickly led to a brief career in the Army’s infantry and “a stint in Vietnam.” 

“I came home with a brand new plan, finished two degrees and had the good fortune to be employed as a student worker in ETSU’s Admissions and Records office, where I was ‘raised’ by three excellent mentors: Dr. James W. Loyd, Mr. O.E. Price and Mr. Ted Mowery,” he said. “All three were highly instrumental in teaching me about service to others and humility.”

The Telford resident has been a part of the ETSU community for over half a century and has kept working at ETSU after his military career.

Doug Taylor Briefly:

Hobbies: “I love riding Harleys and shining up old cars and anything else that needs shining.” 

Favorite TV show lately: “Big Bang Theory” and “The Blacklist”

Favorite books and authors: “A Painted House,” by John Grisham, Larry McMurtry and Lewis Grizzard. 

Favorite food: Cottage hamburgers. “Hot tilapia at the Black Olive in Jonesborough is a close second.”

Dog or cat person: “Definitely dogs!”

Can you tell our readers a bit more about your job? 

My job gives me the opportunity to help others and occasionally have a positive impact on a young life by giving advice that helps them achieve their dreams. I help guide and direct aspirants to success in gaining admission to medical school in a highly competitive process. I also get to oversee the admissions selection process and student records for the college. I work with an awesome team!

What do you think makes ETSU's College of Medicine unique, in your opinion?

Our small size and our people make us unique. Even as a very small school, we have a most excellent graduation rate, and our graduates achieve their top choice for further residency training. That’s very important. Our graduates have made a name for us all across America and in every area of medicine. Quillen is truly a family and a team. We hold the success of our students and service to our area foremost in all we do. We care!

What do you think have been some of the most interesting developments in the world of health care and medicine in recent years or months?

Of course, the Ballad Health merger is the biggest event in medicine in our area since the beginning of the medical school here in the ’70s. I believe it holds great promise for our school and our citizenry. Of course, medical knowledge is increasing at an astounding rate through research, and we are pleased to be a part of that, advancing knowledge through our research and graduate programs. The wave of interdisciplinary education is also a big development in medical education across all areas, and ETSU is proud to take a leadership position in this type of training.

What do you think are the biggest challenges facing students and staff in universities these days?

The biggest challenges are costs and keeping up with the rapid advancement of knowledge. Our first students paid roughly $1,600 for their first year of medical education, now the first year here costs a little over $31,000 here, and our tuition is on the lower end of the scale among medical schools. The rapid advance in knowledge makes it very important that our faculty stay abreast of changes and teaching methods.

What future developments do you hope to see in the College of Medicine? 

I hope to see our college expand, grow and continue to achieve national leadership in our missions of rural and primary care medicine as well as service and research. We enjoy excellent leadership in the college and the university and that will take us new and exciting places.

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