December 3, 2004

Chairs ‘graduate’ from new management program

Featured Image

Samuel A. Santoro, M.D., left, receives his diploma for completing the Academic Leadership Program for New Chairs from VUSM Dean Steven G. Gabbe, M.D.
photo by Mary Donaldson

Chairs ‘graduate’ from new management program

Steven G. Gabbe, M.D., dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, recently congratulated a new class of graduates, but it wasn't your typical ceremony. The students were all leaders of VUSM departments, and they comprised the first class of the institution's Academic Leadership Program for New Chairs, which is designed to help hone managerial and administrative skills.

They group completed its training after 10 monthly sessions.

“The program developed out of Gabbe's concern for new department chairs and their need for additional training to be successful in their new roles.

“Most have not received training to manage and lead a complex business like an academic department,” said Don Moore, Ph.D., professor of Medical Education and Administration and director of Continuing Medical Education. “Chairs are often thrust into positions without being trained how to deal with the responsibilities of managing a business in a complex institution and health care environment. The class is meant to help them develop the skills needed to lead their departments.”

Terry Minnen, MEd., senior consultant for the Learning Center, said the chairs discussed and reflected on their current leadership skills, and were more specifically oriented to work within Vanderbilt business processes.

“The program raised their awareness of Vanderbilt's systems and resources, along with exploring how their roles fit within the Medical Center,” she said. According to Minnen, a number of departments helped to deliver the content, including Finance, Human Resources, the Physician Wellness Program, Compliance and the Learning Center.

Program participants included Chairs Fred H. Bess, Ph.D., Hearing and Speech Sciences; R. Daniel Beauchamp, M.D., Section of Surgical Sciences; Robert L. Macdonald, M.D., Ph.D., Neurology; Samuel A. Santoro, M.D., Ph.D., Pathology; Paul Sternberg Jr., M.D., Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences; Susan R. Wente, Ph.D., Cell and Developmental Biology; Frank E. Harrell Jr., Ph.D., Biostatistics; Michael S. Higgins, M.D., Ph.D., interim, Anesthesiology; and Nancy M. Lorenzi, Ph.D., interim, Biomedical Informatics.