As 2016 comes to a close, I want to recognize this year’s achievements and acknowledge the many individuals throughout our community who have made them possible.
We are in a great position to continue our mission in 2017: to provide an excellent medical education to qualified students of diverse backgrounds in an atmosphere of academic integrity and scholarship.
Looking Back at 2016
The year began with the addition of several new leaders across AUC. Dr. William Owen joined as Dean of Medical Sciences, Dr. Pranaya Mishra as Interim Associate Dean of Student Affairs, Dr. Robert Hecht as Associate Clinical Dean in the US, and Dr. Mark Quirk as Senior Associate Dean of Curriculum and Faculty Development. Their expertise, talent, and vision have already helped to take our university in bold and strategic new directions.
We saw renewed commitments from the Accreditation Commission on Colleges of Medicine (ACCM) and the New York State Education Department’s (NYSED) Board of Regents. ACCM granted AUC six more years of unconditional accreditation while NYSED approved our students for long-term clinical clerkships through 2022. These announcements—the culmination of many individuals’ hard work—reaffirmed our university’s competitive standards and recognized the high-quality of our academic programs.
Our high standards and strong outcomes were perhaps most evident in this year’s residency match. Our graduates’ residency attainment rate reached 86.4 percent (and growing), surpassing the rates of US citizen international medical graduates (53.9%), non-US citizen international medical graduates (50.5%), and osteopathic medical school graduate (80.3%). We finally bested the first-time residency attainment rate of 2012—a major milestone as 2012 graduates matched before the “all in” rule, which took away our graduates’ opportunity to sign outside of the match. AUC’s Match Madness events continue to be one of my favorite activities of the year.
It was also a year of evaluating our current educational technology platforms and investing in new systems and solutions to deliver a better experience. Lectures are now recorded and made accessible to students, grades and schedules are available on a mobile app, students can now access the library virtually, and the AUC portal was revamped with enhanced functionality. This momentum will continue in 2017 as we move towards a new learning management system that can better support our course and curriculum needs.
All of these accomplishments occurred in an environment where students and AUC colleagues are supported and empowered, and where safety and wellbeing is of the utmost importance. This year’s new interpersonal violence prevention training and SIREN emergency system are examples of this ongoing commitment.
This was also a year for bittersweet goodbyes. We lost an incredible teacher and mentor in Professor Lance Nash and said goodbye to a handful of wonderful educators and leaders, many who spent the last decade or more with AUC.
Looking Ahead to 2017
As 2017 edges closer, I can say with confidence that it will be another transformative year for AUC.
Under the leadership of Dr. Mark Quirk, AUC is undergoing a full curriculum review. We are now in a position to embrace changes in medicine and medical education and make important strategic decisions about our own curriculum. I appreciate the many colleagues who are participating in this work and look forward to seeing the Curriculum Review and Recommendations Task Force report in the Spring.
Based on the recommendations of the Academic Support Task Force, we will be adding more academic support to strengthen our programs, we are actively recruiting for a Director of Academic Support to provide additional learning skills support for students and strengthen the advisor system and new student orientation. With more resources and technology in place, we can continue to build our educational offerings.
This year we also expect to complete the transition from Jenzabar to Banner, to rebuild a marketing team within AUC, and to successfully deploy Blackboard on campus. The campus renovations that are currently underway will wrap up in early 2017 and will offer students increased study space. The renovation includes a new designated office space for AUC’s clinical coordinators and residency advisors. Meanwhile, clinical sciences students will benefit from more clinical sites, especially those that are full-core programs, as we continue towards our goal of having more than 90 percent of clinical students in tracked programs.
Congratulations to everyone on an outstanding 2016. I believe 2017 will be another fabulous year for AUC. Thank you to each and every colleague for all that you do for our students and for AUC, and a special thank you to AUC’s leadership team: Dr. Julie Taylor, Dr. William Owen, Dr. Mark Quirk, and Tiffany Ciolek.
Wishing everyone happy and healthy holidays,
Heidi Chumley, MD
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Posted December 28, 2016 05:29 PM