July 10, 2012
Happy summer. Hope things are cool with you as it certainly is heating up with our weather and with all the activity at the College of Medicine. We are busy preparing for the August 6 White Coat ceremony for our fourth class – the class of 2016 – and the beginning of the academic year with 100 new medical students. We continue to be very appreciative of the “team effort” that all of you bring to the college and its successes. In a very short time since the inaugural White Coat ceremony in August 2009, our enrollment has gone from 40 to 280 students – a seven-fold increase in just three years.
The halls at our medical education building at Lake Nona will be bustling soon, and with the increased number of students, we need to identify more preceptors for our M-1 and M-2 students. We welcome your recommendations for physicians to serve as preceptors for our 180 students in the Community of Practice aspect of the Practice of Medicine modules. Students spend eleven, four-hour sessions with their preceptors during the first year and eight in the second.
Preceptors play an incredibly important role in helping students form their identity as physicians-in-training and in adopting the values of the profession. You can see how students view their preceptors in some of their recent evaluations. One student described a preceptor as “a wonderful physician, and a remarkable teacher. He has made me more confident, pushed me to do my very best, and helped me hone my skills as an examiner, reporter, diagnostician and physician. He will remain one of my role models, and my idea of the ‘good doctor’ for the rest of my career.” Another student thanked the preceptor for the opportunity to have hands-on interactions with patients of different backgrounds. “His greatest teaching strength was his ability to convey empathy and teach not only how to diagnose and treat disease, but also how to connect with human beings,” the student wrote.
We are seeking preceptors who are passionate about teaching, are credentialed in their specialty and work in a clinic or hospital setting. Our goal is to provide students with opportunities to observe a variety of patients and to follow them through their treatment plans. To that end, we are particularly seeking preceptors in the areas of family practice, general internal medicine, pediatrics, infectious disease, emergency medicine, nephrology, cardiology, general surgery and obstetrics/gynecology. If you are interested in participating as a preceptor, please contact Morayma Cubero at 407-266-1119 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send your most recent CV to email@example.com. We will determine a student match in late July/early August. New preceptors will be contacted to schedule a 20-30 minute orientation at their clinic/office.
Your service is invaluable as we train students to be knowledgeable, compassionate physicians. Our second-year students recently completed their Step 1 exam. Their average score was 7 points above the national average and more than 50 percent of our students scored above the national average. The results from the Step 2, USMLE Clinical Knowledge (CK) and Clinical Skills (CS) exams are coming in weekly. Students are scoring extremely high (270’s, 260’s and 250’s) in CK. Over 80 percent of the students have taken CS and all have passed based on the results received so far. I’ll keep you posted on the final tallies. This is a strong performance, especially for a new medical school, and I want to thank all of you for helping prepare our students to be the health leaders of tomorrow. Your service and partnership is invaluable.
In other news, we are preparing for this month’s mock LCME visit, where outside experts will come in and do a mock evaluation of our progress. This is in preparation for our October LCME site visit, where a survey team will meet with faculty members, students, staff and our community partners in preparation for a recommendation to the LCME on full accreditation.
We have already set May 17, 2013 as the date for our first graduation. We hope you can attend this celebration as the members of our charter class begin another chapter of their lives. Of course, we are all excited to learn of their Match results in late March 2013. It’s sometimes hard to fathom that our charter class will soon be on to their residencies. It seems like just yesterday that these bright young people – with full, four-year scholarships thanks to our community’s support – were beginning medical school. The other day, a staff member told me, “I can’t believe how these students have developed – so confident, mature, knowledgeable.” Yes they have, through all of your efforts.