School of Medicine Honored for Excellence in Faculty Development

The UCSF School of Medicine has been recognized for its achievements in education by a leading international organization.

The school will be presented with the ASPIRE to Excellence in Faculty Development Award in August at the Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE) 2016 International Conference in Barcelona, Spain. The conference brings together more than 3,500 teachers, researchers and leaders in health professions education from around the world.

The ASPIRE initiative, under the auspices of AMEE (the leading international association for medical education) aims to promote excellence in education, alongside research, as a measure of quality in medical, dental and veterinary schools. ASPIRE recognizes schools that excel in four areas: assessment of students, student engagement, social accountability of the school, and faculty development.

Portrait of Patricia O'Sullivan
Patricia O’Sullivan, EdD

“These are highly coveted awards that are extremely difficult to receive because of the high standards and stringent peer review process,” says David Irby, PhD, UCSF professor of medicine, who serves on the ASPIRE board and chairs the faculty development panel.

“I was privileged to chair the international committee that established the criteria for excellence in faculty development and oversaw the review process for this award,” says Irby. “While I was not involved in the review of the UCSF application, I am pleased to report that UCSF is the first and only medical school in the world to receive this award. This reflects Dr. Patricia O’Sullivan’s amazing work in creating an exemplary and comprehensive faculty development program, which now serves as the standard for excellence worldwide.” O'Sullivan, EdD, is a professor of medicine and surgery and director of faculty development.

The ASPIRE award for faculty development is given this year for the first time ever. UCSF was the first recipient chosen from medical school applicants, along with the Royal Veterinary College at the University of London.

The award letter from the review committee stated: “In our opinion this is an example of an excellent faculty development program against which others can be benchmarked. It sets the ‘gold standard’ for faculty development!”

The award is yet another external recognition of the exceptional educational programs at UCSF School of Medicine. Catherine Lucey, MD, Vice Dean for Education and professor of medicine, along with Irby and O’Sullivan, will accept the award on behalf of the school in Barcelona.