Classroom at the School of Medicine and DentistryIt could be said that 2010 was a centennial anniversary year for the School of Medicine and Dentistry. In 1910, Abraham Flexner issued his report for the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching that severely criticized the quality of most American medical schools. Our School of Medicine and Dentistry grew out of Flexner’s report.

When our School of Medicine and Dentistry opened in 1925, all facilities were under one roof, providing opportunities for cooperation between the School and hospital and establishing clinical as well as academic settings where students could learn. The School maintained small classes and supported research. Through the decades, the School has followed Flexner’s model but also adapted and innovated to meet the needs of medicine and education.

Ten years after the Institute of Medicine’s 1999 report To Err Is Human found that 98,000 Americans die from preventable medical errors, hospitals and medical schools are working to address the issue of patient safety. In 2010, the School of Medicine and Dentistry developed new programs to immerse students in methods that improve patient safety and quality of care. In 2010, the School also expanded services for postdoctoral appointees, who play such an important role in research.

For the third consecutive year, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation awarded funding to the School of Nursing for scholarships to increase the number of students enrolled in the School’s accelerated baccalaureate and master’s programs for non-nurses. Enrollment in the accelerated program continues to grow, increasing 469 percent since the program was introduced in 2002. The School’s three-year-old Doctor of Nursing Practice program received five-year accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), the maximum length of accreditation given by the CCNE for a first-time accreditation. A record high 910 applicants worldwide sought one of 49 Eastman Institute for Oral Health’s post-graduate residency positions.

In May, Mark B. Taubman, M.D., was formally invested as the tenth dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry, though he officially had assumed the post in March. Medical Center CEO Bradford C. Berk, M.D., Ph.D., called the new dean “a skillful cardiologist, scientist and academic leader” — a combination Abraham Flexner would approve.