News and Commentary Leadership in Health Professions Education

David Irby, PhD, University of California, San Francisco, is a member of Macy’s National Advisory Committee which guides the Foundation’s Faculty Scholars Program.

The Macy Faculty Scholars program stands alone in offering a boost to the careers of a highly select group of future leaders, innovators and scholars in health professions education.

I have been a member of Macy’s National Advisory Committee since its inception as both a member of the Committee and a mentor to one of the Scholars. Over the years, I have observed the growing cohorts of Macy Faculty Scholars ascend leadership roles in medical education and health professions education nationally.

Through watching presentations, consulting with Scholars on conference calls, and observing them in action at national meetings, I have seen firsthand the impact that the sponsorship has on the educators it supports. The boost to their careers provided by the program is evident in their expanded professional networks and their emerging leadership nationally in specialty and interprofessional organizations and in scholarly publications. Macy Scholars are the envy of their colleagues.

As the mentor to Macy Faculty Scholar Dr. Sandrijn van Schaik, I have been privileged to see her career growth over the past several years. At the time of her application, I knew her to be an energetic, talented educator, who had started to develop into an astute medical researcher and an increasingly recognized leader of innovations at UCSF. It has been a source of pleasure and pride to see how Dr. van Schaik has developed over the past two years due to her involvement with the Macy Faculty Scholars program. She has completed several important research studies that greatly inform how we approach interprofessional feedback across professions, and is establishing herself as an expert in an important area of work that has received little attention thus far. It is clear that Dr. van Schaik, like other Macy Scholars, benefit greatly from the program, in terms of developing research expertise, leadership abilities and a national network of fellow scholars.

I continue to be amazed by the vision of the Macy Foundation in launching this signature program, which is transforming medical and nursing education for the better.

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