January 11, 2008

VUSM program helps hone leadership skills

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Pampee Young, M.D., Ph.D.

VUSM program helps hone leadership skills

Sixteen Vanderbilt University School of Medicine faculty graduated last month from the School's Academic Leadership Program, newly armed with skills vital to their success as future leaders.

The Academic Leadership Program is the brainchild of VUSM Dean Steven Gabbe, M.D., who saw a need for new chairs and division and center directors to receive training in management and administration. He launched the program in 2004.

“Our faculty are focused on excellence in education, research and health care,” said Gabbe. “Then suddenly they're thrust into leadership positions without having been trained in managing a complex academic unit. Our program fills the gaps.”

This year's class learned management skills by tackling an issue facing the School of Medicine: how to maintain Vanderbilt's culture of learning at a separate One Hundred Oaks campus.

The class went through a 10-month training period that included sessions on finance, human resources, compliance and building infrastructure. During their final session, they presented a paper to senior leadership with recommendations on how to unite two separate campuses under one culture.

“I was very impressed with their interaction and teamwork,” said Bonnie Miller, M.D., associate dean for Undergraduate Medical Education, who attended the final class. “They've developed individual management styles and they bonded as a group.”

This year's program graduates are Shari Barkin, M.D., Pediatrics; Timothy Blackwell, M.D., Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine; Ravi Chari, M.D., Surgery and Cancer Biology; Robert Deegan, M.D., Ph.D., Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology; Katherine Hartmann, M.D., OB/GYN; Kevin Johnson, M.D., Biomedical Informatics; Jeremy Kaye, M.D., Radiology; Mark Kelley, M.D., Surgical Oncology; Maureen Malee, M.D., Ph.D., OB/GYN; Richard Peek Jr., M.D., Gastroenterology; Jennifer Pietenpol, Ph.D., Biochemistry; David Piston, Ph.D., Molecular Physiology & Biophysics; D. Brent Polk, M.D., Pediatric Gastroenterology; Yu Shyr, Ph.D., Cancer Biostatistics; Larry Swift, Ph.D., Pathology; and Ann Walia, M.D., Anesthesiology.