Fort Worth health exec Dorman will pay first-year tuition for inaugural TCU-UNTHSC medical school class

Paul Dorman DFB Pharmaceuticals

The Fort Worth healthcare executive Paul Dorman will fund the first-year tuition for all 60 medical students in the inaugural class at the new Texas Christian University-University of North Texas Health Science Center medical school, set to open next year, it was announced Tuesday morning.

“This will be a phenomenal recruiting tool” that alters the students’ lives, Stuart Flynn, the medical school’s dean, said in announcing the gift at a Leadership Fort Worth breakfast at the Fort Worth Club.

The inaugural class will be called the Dorman Scholars, Flynn said. “They will wear that with enormous pride,” Flynn said.

Dorman, who attended the breakfast, received a standing ovation. Flynn, in his speech, did not put an estimate on the value of the gift. Dorman said in an interview after the breakfast that the gift is likely worth more than $3 million.

"This will bring in research, technology and innovation, and we want to be part of that," Dorman said in the interview.

The medical school approached him to discuss support of the medical school, and that led to a conversation about the gift of tuition, Dorman said.

Dorman is chief executive of DFB Pharmaceuticals. DFB specializes in products that address skin and soft tissue disorders.

The TCU-UNTHSC medical school plans a full enrollment of 240 students.

Also at the breakfast, Paul Umbach, of the healthcare consulting firm Tripp Umbach, estimated the medical school will eventually drive $100 million in annual economic impact by itself “at maturity.”

With spinoffs, “you could be seeing a $2 billion impact,” he said.

Umbach lauded the TCU-UNTHSC partnership. “It takes a lot of courage to do a partnership medical school,” he said.