“Diversity is not only a numerical goal; there is a fluid progression that must be evaluated. Inclusion as a Strategy for Excellence, in the School of Medicine, is the recognition that the institution’s success is dependent on how well it values, engages, and includes diverse faculty, staff, students, patients, and suppliers. More than a short-term project or a narrow initiative, this comprehensive approach requires a fundamental transformation of the School’s culture by embedding and practicing inclusion in every effort, aspect, and level of the institution. The goal is to make inclusion a norm that is implemented and practiced.
The concept of Inclusion as a Strategy for Excellence within the School of Medicine is a departure from a simplistic definition of diversity to a more comprehensive, and omnipresent notion of inclusiveness that envelopes several ideologies. Inclusiveness and Excellence are interdependent, as opposed to the traditional perspective that separates the two concepts. To practice inclusiveness is a demonstration of excellence.
Our plan is to shift the responsibility for diversity and inclusiveness onto all administrators, faculty, staff,researchers, and students within the School of Medicine. This is in contrast to one unit or department shouldering the responsibility for diversity. A single department or person can guide the process, but every individual with the School, from the Dean to individual employees, assumes responsibility for change.
In effect, this will shift the School away from conceptualizing diversity solely as a numerical goal of diverse faculty, employees, vendors, and applicants to transforming the institution into a vibrant community that embeds the Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan throughout the institution in multiple ways.
Our Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan throughout the institution includes demographics, policies, research, financial resources, leadership, hiring, organizational learning, organizational structure, marketing, outreach, technology, performance management, communications, promotion, assessment, and evaluation. This Plan employs a broad and inclusive definition of diversity that includes disability, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, age, religion, disability, race/ethnicity, nationality, and other social dimensions that are important for the School and academic medicine. The magnitude of inclusivity will impact faculty, staff, and students alike, and we can embed a more Diverse outlook onto the School of Medicine.”
– Greg Townsend, MD
Associate Dean for Diversity
“I would say that the whole community, students, faculty, friends, made me feel like [Charlottesville] is my home. The entire community has been very welcoming and very accepting, even before I was naturalized.”
–Mouadh Benamar, a third-year graduate Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics student at UVA.
The University of Virginia received the 2016 Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education. As a recipient of the Health Professions HEED Award — a national honor recognizing U.S. medical, dental, pharmacy, osteopathic, nursing, and allied health schools that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion — The University of Virginia’s School of Medicine will be featured, along with 30 other recipients, in the December 2016 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine.
“Our plan is to shift the responsibility for diversity and inclusiveness onto all administrators, faculty, staff, researchers, and students within the School of Medicine.”
– Greg Townsend, MD
Associate Dean for Diversity
INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine selected UVA’s School of Medicine based on the institution’s success on how it values, engages, and includes diverse faculty, staff, students, patients, and suppliers. More than a short-term project or a narrow initiative, UVA’s School of Medicine has a comprehensive approach that requires fundamental transformation of the School’s culture by embedding and practicing inclusion in every effort, aspect, and level of the institution.
“The Health Professions HEED Award process consists of a comprehensive and rigorous application that includes questions relating to the recruitment and retention of students and employees — and best practices for both — continued leadership support for diversity, and other aspects of campus diversity and inclusion. We take a holistic approach to reviewing each application in deciding who will be named a HEED Award recipient. Our standards are high, and we look for institutions where diversity and inclusion are woven into the work being accomplished every day across their campus,” said Lenore Pearlstein, publisher of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine.
For more information about the 2016 Health Professions HEED Award, click here.
Jordan Hall to be renamed in honor of
Dr. Vivian Pinn
Last week, the Board of Visitors voted to rename Jordan Hall in honor of Dr. Vivian Pinn, a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Medicine, Class of 1967. Having recognized the service of Dean Harvey Jordan for more than 45 years – and as we refurbish our central research facility – this is an opportune time to create a new representation of UVA’s inspiring medical education and research. Along with the renaming of Jordan Hall, we will also commission a Nobel Atrium to honor the Nobel laureates in medicine who did pioneering work at UVA.
Our goal is to provide a shining light into our bright future, reflecting the accomplishments of modern day luminaries who provide us with stellar examples of what persistence, diligence, teamwork and creativity can achieve. As a group of School of Medicine leaders discussed for whom Jordan Hall should be renamed as part of this effort, Dr. Pinn was the consensus choice.
Honored for her work as a physician, scientist, researcher and scholar, Dr. Pinn embodies the values, character and skills of a leader whom we want our students and faculty to emulate as we strive to improve the human condition. She was the sole female and minority member of the Class of 1967 at the UVA School of Medicine. She had an illustrious career at both Tufts Medical School and at Howard University College of Medicine, where she became the first African-American woman to chair Howard’s Department of Pathology. Dr. Pinn served as the first director of the NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health, and during her time at NIH instituted a national project to re-examine priorities for the women’s health research agenda in the U.S.
She was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 1995 and received special recognition from the American Association of Medical Colleges in 2011 for her exceptional leadership to improve health and career opportunities for women and minorities. In 2012, she earned the first Bernadine Healy Award for Visionary Leadership in Women’s Health from the Congress on Women’s Health. Earlier this year, she was named to Modern Healthcare’s Health Care Hall of Fame.
Dr. Pinn has been honored on multiple occasions by UVA. In 2005 she became the first African-American woman to give the University’s Commencement Address, and in 2010 the School of Medicine named one of its advisory colleges for medical students in her honor.