The University of Sydney has been bombarded with applications from people eager to study at its new medical school at Dubbo.
It's being built on the grounds of the university's School of Rural Health in Moran Drive with the federal government picking up the $7.65 million bill.
Dubbo's medical school is part of the government's $95 million Murray-Darling Medical Schools Network.
State-of-the-art teaching facilities and a simulation training centre are on track to be completed in October.
The first cohort of year one students will be welcomed into the new school in January 2022.
They will be the first to undertake the university's world-class Doctor of Medicine program "in its entirety" from outside Sydney.
School of Rural Health (Dubbo/Orange) school manager Kim O'Connor reports of applications closing in late May.
"We've received significant interest from rural people and have had a large number of applications to commence the program in 2022," she said.
"Priority will be given to rural and Indigenous applicants."
Work on the new medical school began in January after the tender for the project was awarded to Patterson Building Group in late 2020.
Local contractors are being used wherever possible..School of Rural Health (Dubbo/Orange) school manager Kim O'Connor
"Local contractors are being used wherever possible, and this was a condition of the contract being awarded," Ms O'Connor said.
"We will also be using local contractors to provide some of the office furniture."
Ms O'Connor told of the construction work going ahead "rapidly".
"The project works are up to gyprock stage with most of the services now installed, windows are in and bathrooms being tiled," she said.
"I understand the cladding will start going on from around next week."
The manager said improvements would also be made to the long-established School of Rural Health.
"As well as the new teaching facilities and simulation training centre, the other works will include some refurbishment to our existing administration building, a new reception area and additional office space," she said.
The new buildings and refurbished areas of the School of Rural Health will be adorned by the designs of local Wirdadjuri artist Cara Shields, who was chosen to be part of the project after "community consultation".
The public will be invited to check out the new school later in the year or in early 2022.
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