Seismic Activity: Recruiting New Leaders for Medical Schools
Joyce De Leo

Joyce De Leo

Medical education is undergoing a much-needed major transformation, believes Joyce De Leo, Ph.D., a consultant in Witt/Kieffer’s Academic Medicine and Health Sciences practice who has more than 20 years of experience in academic and medical school administration. For more than a century, she notes, the standard medical school curriculum was relatively unchanged, comprising two years of lectures and two years of clinical rotations. “Change is coming quickly,” she notes. Med Ed is undergoing “a seismic shift in how classes are taught, what subjects are included in the four-year curriculum, who has the expertise and skills to teach and, finally, how schools can navigate these necessary changes to educate the physicians of tomorrow.”

The above is from “Medical Education’s Seismic Shift (and What It Means for Leadership),” published recently on the evoLLLution, a website dedicated to encouraging change in U.S. higher education. (The three L’s in the publication’s name refer to “life long learning.”) To explore the topic more, the evoLLLution followed up with Joyce for a Q&A about the development and recruitment of the next generation of leaders for medical education. This conversation is published in “Medical Education’s Seismic Shift: Implications for Recruiting New Leaders.”

Most importantly, Joyce points out, a dramatically new curricular landscape in medical schools requires a different sort of leader than was typical in the past. “The typical career path for medical school leaders is being challenged,” she explains. “The usual step-wise progression from resident or post-doctoral fellow to junior faculty as an assistant professor and then promotion through the ranks until a leadership role is obtained may not yield the type of innovator required to navigate and succeed in these demanding times.”

Rather, she says, a broad mix of development inside and outside of academic medicine will be required for these leaders. In other words, academic medical centers will be looking to recruiting leaders with traditional credentials yet with multiple and varied career experiences. It seems simple but, in light of medical education’s history, it is seismic, Joyce believes.

For another recent article from Joyce De Leo, please read: “Your Next Leadership Position: Dive Deep Before Signing On

By Paul Thomas, Strategic Communications Leader

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