OUWB Stephan Sharf Interim Dean Duane Mezwa, M.D., recently joined more than 20 other new medical school deans at a conference aimed at orienting them to their respective positions — and generally furthering medical education throughout the U.S.
‘Deans’ Charm School’: OUWB’s Mezwa caps year of learning in D.C.
Deans' Charm School 1
OUWB Stephan Sharf Interim Dean Duane Mezwa, M.D., recently joined more than 20 other new medical school deans at the Executive Development Seminar for Deans (EDD). The conference is designed for new permanent, interim, or acting deans.

OUWB Stephan Sharf Interim Dean Duane Mezwa, M.D., recently joined more than 20 other new medical school deans at a conference aimed at orienting them to their respective positions — and generally furthering medical education throughout the U.S.

Led by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the Executive Development Seminar for Deans (EDD) is held annually during January or February in Washington, D.C. It is designed for new permanent, interim, or acting deans.

Mezwa — who said the three-day event is affectionately known as “Deans’ Charm School” — spent time learning and networking with his counterparts from medical schools at Yale University, New York University, George Washington University, University of Southern California-Davis, Michigan State University, Wayne State University, and more.

It’s the latest example in what has been a year-long learning experience for Mezwa on what it means to be a dean. (He was appointed interim dean at OUWB in February of last year.)

“This has been the best year of my career,” he said. “Learning to be a dean is a challenge every single day, but I’m fortunate to be surrounded by great advisors, associate and assistant deans, and clinical faculty.”

Mezwa said participation in events such as EDD bolster his daily on-the-job learning.

The “Deans’ Charm School” was an intensive three-day event that covered a wide range of topics that apply to all medical schools, from working with university legal counsel and recruiting and training talent to dealing with the media and academic medicine’s federal policy priorities.

Mixed in with the sessions were plenty of networking and socializing opportunities, too, said Mezwa. That included a dinner with AAMC President and CEO David Skorton, M.D.

“Even though the different medical schools compete for students, we’re here to help each other,” he said. “We put the competitive differences aside when trying to do what’s best for our students, and ultimately, patients.”

Deans' Charm School 2Mezwa added that he believes the group (in picture) will “stay together as a cadre of this class of deans where we will all serve as great resources for each other, and almost always be a phone call away.”

The EDD is by no means the only learning experience Mezwa has engaged in during the last year.

He also has attended conferences hosted by AAMC’s Group on Student Affairs, and Group on Women in Medicine.

Mezwa also attended AAMC’s Annual Meeting, and a Council of Deans meeting.

Though attending AAMC events in his role of interim dean is new, Mezwa said he has an extensive history with the organization that stretches back to the beginning of his career.

His introduction to AAMC occurred while attending medical school at Wayne State University School of Medicine, where he graduated from in 1979 before completing his residency at Beaumont Health.

Mezwa became an attending radiologist in 1983 and served as program director for 15 years followed by vice chair and eventually Beaumont Health System Chair and physician executive for Diagnostic Radiology and Molecular Imaging.

Mezwa has been involved in OUWB since its inception. He was on the inaugural admissions committee and served as vice chair. He has also served on the Deans Executive Committee and previously chaired the Student Performance Review Committee.

He was the chair of the Department of Diagnostic Radiology and Molecular Imaging at OUWB until he was appointed Stephan Sharf Interim Dean.

Immediately prior to his role as interim dean, it was through OUWB that Mezwa became associated with AAMC another way: representing clinical faculty to the AAMC as a member of the Council of Faculty and Academic Societies.

“It’s been excellent in that it’s the only association that has in common all of the medical schools in the country…it’s the voice of the academic world,” Mezwa said.

For more information, contact Andrew Dietderich, marketing writer, OUWB, at adietderich@oakland.edu

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