Dear KPSOM Students, Faculty, and Staff,
Over the past few months, I have been reflecting on our KPSOM community and what we have all done together to create and launch our school—it is remarkable how much everyone as a team has accomplished! In particular, we have made impressive progress on the school’s goal to help transform medical education.
It is with great pride in our school, but also with mixed emotions, that I share with you that I have informed the KPSOM Board of Directors that I will step down as Founding Dean and CEO in June 2024, after our inaugural class graduates and heads off into residency. I have concluded it will be the right time for a new leader to take KPSOM into our next phase of growth while providing the Board ample time to conduct a nationwide search for my successor.
I am incredibly humbled and appreciative to have had the opportunity to serve as the inaugural Dean at KPSOM—a place dedicated to the values that I hold dear, both personally and professionally. And I am honored to have been part of the phenomenal team that contributed to helping build one of the nation’s most innovative medical schools. As a result of a global pandemic, we launched in a time of great challenge and uncertainty, and our success in doing this speaks to the commitment of our entire community. My sincere gratitude goes to all of you I have had the chance to work with on this journey—our faculty, staff, students, leadership, community partners, Board of Directors, the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals, and the Permanente Medical Groups.
In a few short years of operation, we have made great progress in setting the course for the future. We have established a novel case-based core curriculum from scratch that integrates biomedical, clinical, and health systems science, and made critical steps towards accreditation. I will be here through our LCME site visit in February 2024 and am confident that we are on a solid path toward full accreditation. Further, I am grateful that our leadership has the talent, capabilities, and commitment to lead the school in continuing to build on KPSOM’s positive momentum moving forward.
The Kaiser Permanente Bernard J. Tyson School of Medicine is unlike any medical school that came before it, and we are well-positioned to achieve the next phases of our mission to educate a diverse community of compassionate healers, lifelong learners, and courageous leaders of change within the profession and society.
I am committed to supporting KPSOM’s next dean through a smooth leadership transition while we conduct the important work that lies ahead, and I plan to remain at the school as faculty after I step down as Dean. In the meantime, I look forward to continuing to work with all of you as KPSOM transitions from a start-up school and enters its exciting next phase.
Announcement from the KPSOM Board of Directors
February 21, 2023
Dear Members of the Medical School Community,
Earlier today, Mark Schuster, MD, PhD, Founding Dean and CEO, announced his decision to step down from his role in June 2024. On behalf of the board of directors, I would like to acknowledge and offer deep appreciation for the many successes Dean Schuster has led our school to achieve. His countless contributions since he arrived have set the foundation from which we will enter the next phase of growth and development for our school. His tenure is marked by extraordinary accomplishments, not the least of which includes the formidable task of opening a school in the middle of a global pandemic.
We are grateful to Dean Schuster for his commitment and impact in the development of our school since his arrival in 2017. His leadership and legacy touches all areas of our school, including:
- Leaders, Faculty, and Staff – Dean Schuster was essential to building the school with more than 1,000 faculty and staff, and a leadership team who are providing a remarkable experience for our students and who reflect the diversity that is integral to our school’s mission. We are proud that 22% of our faculty are from groups underrepresented in medicine (URiM) which is more than double the national average among medical schools.
- Accreditation – We are making great progress toward full accreditation, with provisional accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME); provisional approval from the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE); and achieving candidate status from the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), passing all standards with five commendations.
- Admissions and Student Body – Dean Schuster helped establish and implement an admissions process using a holistic review model, which yielded the highest ratio of applicants to spots of any medical school in the country. Our three classes have one of the highest percentages (41%) of students underrepresented in medicine and our school is ranked the sixth most diverse medical school in the country.
- Innovative Curriculum and Building Design – KPSOM offers innovative curriculum and teaching tools used by our faculty and students. This learning is taking place in a state-of-the-art facility that was designed to promote the collaboration and teamwork vital in the delivery of quality health and healthcare.
We will plan a time in the future to gather to thank Dean Schuster for his leadership in launching our school and navigating this first chapter in our school’s history.
The Board of Directors will now begin the process for a comprehensive search to identify our next leader. It is vital that this search include all voices of our school community. Over the next few weeks, we will come together to design the search process. We will use this as an opportunity to shape the next chapter of our school’s growth and evolution consistent with our mission, vision, and values.
As an educational institution, we are driven by the belief that we all must continually learn and grow. We have put this belief into action since before we opened our doors in July 2020 to now, and we will continue to do so. We remain committed to changing medicine for the better and improving the health and well-being of our patients and our communities.
Holly J. Humphrey, MD
On behalf of the Board of Directors
Andrew B. Bindman, MD
Ronald L. Copeland, MD
Ramin Davidoff, MD
Glenn M. Hackbarth, JD, MA
Mary M. Hentges
Richard S. Isaacs, MD
Anthony B. Iton, MD, JD, MPH
Peter Lee, PhD
Julie K. Miller-Phipps, MHA
David G. Nichols, MD, MBA
Marc A. Nivet, EdD, MBA
Carol Raphael, MPA, Med
Gilbert Salinas, MPA
Maria S. Salinas, CPA
Anne E. Wojcicki