Archives for October 2017

Year 6: Excellence in Diversity Award

Dean David Wilkes

At times, I have to remind myself that some of our work is a marathon, not a sprint. But I find encouragement when I hear that, for the sixth year in a row, the University of Virginia School of Medicine has received the 2017 Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award. Presented by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, this national honor recognizes U.S. medical, dental, pharmacy, osteopathic, nursing, and allied health schools that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion.

To receive this award six years in a row reflects our School’s dedication and commitment to diversity and inclusion. This is a great team effort. Our faculty, staff, and students consistently keep our core institutional values of respecting everyone at the forefront of what they do.

Our diversity efforts include:

  • Summer Medical Leadership Program. This six-week summer academic enrichment program brings together 30 college undergraduates interested in medical careers who are from disadvantaged backgrounds and underrepresented groups in medicine. The main goal is to expose participants to the “real world of medicine” to prepare them not only for admission to medical school but to assume future leadership positions in the medical field.
  • Partnerships with local schools. The School of Medicine hosts a Poster Symposium each year at Charlottesville High School to introduce high-school students — and future healthcare workers — to medical research. As part of their projects, students visit the UVA Claude Moore Health Sciences Library and are mentored by UVA research scientists.
  • Committee on Women. The committee promotes opportunities for mentoring and leadership for women throughout the School of Medicine, including an annual award honoring a faculty member for their leadership efforts.
  • Latino Health Initiative. In partnership with groups across UVA and the Charlottesville area, members work to improve health literacy, outcomes and access to care for local Latino residents. Ongoing projects include biweekly cardiovascular disease screening and education sessions, as well as training and empowerment for Latino community health workers.

I commend our faculty and staff for being dedicated to such an important effort. Special thanks to Dr. Greg Townsend, Associate Dean for Diversity. Each department has designated a diversity facilitator, and Greg has been meeting regularly with these facilitators to implement and promote diversity efforts in all departments. While there is still much to be done in the realm of diversity and inclusion, I feel like we are making positive strides every day. For that, I thank you all.

The University of Virginia School of Medicine will be featured, along with 23 other recipients, in the December 2017 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. For more information on the 2017 Health Professions HEED Award, click here. For more information about the School’s diversity initiatives, click here.

David S. Wilkes, MD
Dean, UVA School of Medicine
James Carroll Flippin Professor of Medical Science

Highlights: October MAC Meeting

Opening Comments from the Dean
David S. Wilkes, MD

  • Congratulations to Bradford Worrall, MD, for receiving a Fulbright Scholarship.
  • We are about halfway through the department and center annual reviews. Some of the early themes we have noticed:
    • In those departments with incentive plans that have a portion of the salary at risk for the quality of medical student teaching as judged by student evaluations, the student evaluations are higher.
    • The residency programs have had more success in recruiting women and underrepresented minorities.
    • Chairs are making progress in moving a higher percentage of compensation to base salaries with a lower percentage of compensation in incentives. This has important ramifications for retirement benefits.
  • Dean Wilkes welcomed Arturo P. Saavedra, MD, PhD, MBA, as the new chair of Dermatology.

Update on University/Health System Campaign
Anne Watkins and Amy Karr, Health System Development
We are in the quiet phase of the campaign and soliciting input from chairs and center directors. The formal kickoff will be in the summer/fall of 2019 with the campaign running through 2026. The working goal for the Health System is $1 billion.

September Health System Board Update
Bobby Chhabra, MD
Dr. Chhabra shared highlights from the September 13, 2017, HSB meeting. The HS goals dashboard for FY18 showed strong performance with two green indicators and the remaining ones yellow. Likewise, the Medical Center FY17 year-end balanced scorecard showed excellent progress in all areas except one (voluntary turnover).

The next meeting will be Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017, in the MEB Learning Studio.

Pinn Hall Dedication: What a Great Day!

Before I arrived at UVA, a colleague of mine at the National Institutes of Health told me, “When you get to Virginia, you have to meet Vivian Pinn.” It was great advice. I’ve become friends with Dr. Pinn over the past two years and I’ll repeat that advice to you: If you have an opportunity to meet Dr. Pinn — jump at the chance. She is an outstanding scientist and an even better person.

There are many reasons I am excited to be here at UVA. But meeting Dr. Pinn and honoring her legacy by renaming a building in her honor, a building that will be dedicated to advancing science for the betterment of mankind is yet another reason.

We will soon be renovating Pinn Hall to create state-of-the-art research space to support today’s most talented and ambitious scientific leaders. This facility will incorporate the latest technologies to encourage productivity and scientific partnership among interdisciplinary teams. By using open and flexible lab modules and shared equipment, this renovation will increase our space efficiency by 25%. Ultimately, this promotes team science, which is what we need to stay competitive with other elite schools of medicine.

I recommend watching the below 40-minute video from the Sept. 13 dedication ceremony. Her accomplishments and perseverance are truly commendable and worthy of your time. Included are timestamps for ease of use.

  • 00:00 – 05:40 | Teresa Sullivan, President, University of Virginia
  • 05:50 – 09:56 | Frank “Rusty” Conner III, Rector, UVA Board of Visitors
  • 10:15 – 14:01 | Dr. L.D. Britt, UVA Board of Visitors
  • 14:07 – 15:05 | Dr. David Wilkes, Dean, UVA School of Medicine
  • 15:12 – 20:12 | Video: Dr. Francis Collins, Director, National Institutes of Health
  • 20:21 – 25:53 | Dr. David Wilkes, Dean, UVA School of Medicine
  • 26:08 – 40:40 | Dr. Vivian Pinn, Senior Scientist Emerita, NIH Fogarty International Center

Additionally, during Dr. Pinn’s visit to UVA, she participated in the Medical Center Hour entitled “Assuring Fair Access for All.” You can view that video here.

She is an inspiring speaker and I encourage you to take time to watch the video.

David S. Wilkes, MD
Dean, UVA School of Medicine
James Carroll Flippin Professor of Medical Science