Mary Lee, MD, and Vivian Budnik, PhD, (center) were joined at by School of Medicine Dean Terence Flotte and Luanne Thorndyke, MD, at the ELAM graduation ceremonies in April.
UMass Medical School’s Vivian Budnik, PhD, and Mary Lee, MD, became ‘ELUMS’—graduates of the of the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) Program for Women at the Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia—at ceremonies held there last month.
The ceremonies marked the completion of a year-long fellowship in which Dr. Budnik, chair and professor of neurobiology, and Dr. Lee, chair and professor of pediatrics, professor of cell & developmental biology and physician-in-chief of the UMass Memorial Children’s Medical Center, were immersed in the skills, perspective and knowledge required to lead and manage effectively in today’s complex academic health center environment. They also made the most of the extensive networking and mentoring opportunities ELAM offers for women who have attained leadership roles in academic medicine.
The ELAM fellowship year culminates in a forum where the fellows, along with their deans and top experts, explore a new methodology or strategy for addressing a timely issue facing academic health center leadership. Budnik’s project focused on formalizing a sustainable mentoring program in the Department of Neurobiology to foster a scientific environment at the departmental level where in addition to excellence in science, the goal is also to create the synergism, mentoring and support required for doing science in this era. For her ELAM project, Lee strove to expand existing networks and leverage cross-departmental and regional collaborations to enhance the visibility and academic reputation of the Department of Pediatrics and the Children’s Medical Center.
Budnik and Lee are the latest in a growing core of women faculty leaders at UMMS to participate in ELAM. Others include: