May 5, 2011

VUSM’s successful advisory college program expands

VUSM’s successful advisory college program expands

The four-year-old system of Advisory Colleges within the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine has been so successful the program has been expanded and given an academic upgrade.

The four-college system includes Batson, Chapman, Gabbe and Robinson colleges. Since its inception in 2006, the advisory colleges, named in honor of past VUSM deans Steven Gabbe, M.D., John Chapman, M.D., Randolph Batson, M.D., and George Canby Robinson, M.D., have focused on student wellness and career counseling.

Each college has two faculty directors who participate in coursework surrounding wellness and career selection.

Now, with the recent hiring of a new assistant dean for Program Development, Quentin Eichbaum, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., a first-year colloquium course has been designed that will be woven into the curriculum.

The role of the faculty college directors — who are now titled College Mentors — has been expanded, more than doubling the time commitment for each mentor. Part of that expanded time will be spent teaching the colloquium.

“We want to create a sense of a learning community while maintaining the benefits of the wellness and career advising. The greater academic focus also allows us to retain more of the mentors’ time so students can have more contact with them,” said Scott Rodgers, M.D., associate dean for Medical Student Affairs.

The colloquium coursework will cover a range of topics including meta-cognition (how people think and learn), medical ethics, health care delivery, insurance reform and clinical reasoning.

The new mentors for the upcoming 2011-2012 school year are:

• Batson College – Ben Heavrin, M.D., assistant professor of Emergency Medicine, and Amanda Wilson, M.D., assistant professor of Psychiatry and Emergency Medicine;

• Chapman College – Walter Clair, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of Medicine, and Beth Ann Sastre, M.D., assistant professor of Medicine;

• Gabbe College – Ban Mishu Allos, M.D., assistant professor of Medicine (Infectious Diseases) and Preventive Medicine, and Amy Fleming, M.D., assistant professor of Pediatrics; and

• Robinson College – Sandi Moutsios, M.D., assistant professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, and Michael Pilla, M.D., associate professor of Clinical Anesthesiology.