This is the time for the traditional New Year’s resolutions. Let me take this one step further.
What do you want to be when you grow up? This is a question I was asked many times in my formative years. This question may not be so personally relevant today, as there are clear signs that my personal “growing up” is not as much of a distant and long term future destiny. However, I think the question still has value – for us individually, and for the organizations we are committed to work within.
Over the holidays, many institutions send their greetings and wishes our way, using the opportunity to brag about themselves and their accomplishments over the last year. To their credit, there are some really good things happening in academic medicine across the country.
We have also realized that it is important to speak about all of the positive accomplishments that are ours to celebrate over the year. It remains an exciting and positive environment for me to have the privilege of leading. These accomplishments are really too numerous to catalog here within the blog, and many, if not all, of these have been acknowledged separately.
We can acknowledge that we have never existed in such highly competitive environments as some of the institutions across the nation. This competition, at the national level, may fuel the need to loudly advertise any advantage that can be perceived in what may be called the “medical marketplace.” Brody’s own Annual Report is linked to the academic calendar and rarely gushes with immodesty. We need to understand that the level of competition in the future will inevitably increase and will occur at the national level. Our benchmarks for performance are no longer measured at the local level.
Our own approach in reporting our performance will continue to be as realistic as possible. This does not preclude championing the positive accomplishments, but we will also fully acknowledge the challenges we must face. To me, this sets the stage for the work that will be necessary to take advantage of the opportunities that we can imagine and see.
One has to work within a strong foundation of reality.
This is why the question – “What do you want to be when you grow up?” – is so relevant. The dynamic of this question focuses attention on the present, and at the same time, projects into the future with anticipation of something rewarding. The future aspiration is what we can become excited about, and is inherently energizing and motivational. The future state is worth the effort as we work towards the goals.
We can all take stock of our many accomplishments over the past several months. Our clinicians have risen to the challenge of increasing access for our patients. This has been close to a “double digit” response over the last six months.
There are success stories from every component of the enterprise. They include our students presenting research, faculty attaining tenure and promotion and staff demonstrating their leadership and loyalty to the mission of the school.
With these in mind, we can commit to working energetically now with a positive vision of the future. Some of our work will consist of “must do’s” and some will be based on our own creativity and imagination.
When the Brody School of Medicine “grows up,” we will be broadly acknowledged as the most effective medical school in North Carolina dedicated to the health and wellness of its region’s citizens. We will be fully recognized as contributing to the economic health of eastern North Carolina in even more meaningful ways. We will be seen as a valuable partner within the state and in all that pertains to the provision of medical care and service and the health maintenance.
I am excited by this continuing work and look forward to all that can be seen as opportunity in the New Year.
I wish you all the very best for 2015!