It is hard to believe I’ve passed the two-year mark as dean of the Boonshoft School of Medicine (BSOM)! When I arrived in November 2020, the school was enduring the depths of the coronavirus pandemic. The vaccines hadn’t yet been rolled out, our Foundations classes were still occurring remotely, and our clinical students, faculty, and researchers were being challenged to carry out their work under the difficulties posed by the need for social distancing and masking. Undaunted, our community rose to the challenges, and here we are, two years later, experiencing fully in-person activities in a much safer environment. I am so proud of the BSOM faculty, staff, and students who kept their laser focus on our mission to create the next generation of physicians and scientists to serve our region, state, and world and to advance research and patient care.
During the challenges of the last few years, we’ve continued to look forward. The next five years will be an exciting time as BSOM will reach its milestone 50th anniversary in 2026! With this in mind, we began a strategic planning process in 2021 which engaged a broad segment of the BSOM community. In this issue of Vital Signs, we are pleased to share with you a summary document of our Strategic Plan, which outlines our vision for the next five years at BSOM. Building on the school’s original vision, we look to the future while remaining true to our mission of creating outstanding physicians to serve our region and beyond and embracing continuous improvement and innovation. We also retain our dedication to be a welcoming “school of opportunity” where we strive to create a diverse physician workforce dedicated to improving health outcomes in our region.
We feature the activities of our research department, which continues to remain a core of our foundation and plan for the future with over $16 million in program funds. BSOM’s commitment to research was demonstrated this year with our first annual research symposium, organized by our new associate dean for research affairs, Paul J. Hershberger, Ph.D., where faculty and staff shared numerous posters and presentations.
We recognize and celebrate the match results of all 107 of our amazing students, 33 percent of which are staying in Raider country. In addition, we continue the BSOM tradition of having over 37 percent of students match in primary care fields.
Since the inception of BSOM, our alumni have excelled in their careers all over the world. We celebrate and recognize these accomplishments in Alumni Notes.
Student scholarships remain a top priority for us, as the average BSOM student incurs over $210,000 in debt during their years in school. As always, we thank our generous alumni, friends, and donors who continue to support us.