In 1999, Saint James School of Medicine was approved by the Federal Government of the Netherlands Antilles, and the university became operational in 2001. The project is a combined one, bringing together the island government of Bonaire and a consortium of highly experienced medical educators and physicians from universities and colleges in the United States and Europe. The basic science and clinical rotation programs are fully compatible with US medical school programs, with special reference to the requirements of USMLE.
The Saint James School of Medicine Anguilla campus welcomed its first students in January 2010, following ten years of successful education on the Bonaire campus. SJSM has grown tremendously since its inception and currently has more than 250 students across two campuses, with more than 200 students carrying out their clinical clerkships in the United States.