December 2011 President’s Corner

December 9, 2011

Office of the President and
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs
208 Joe H. Reynolds Medical Building
College Station, TX 77843-1114

December 12, 2011

Dear TAMHSC Community,

I, along with my leadership team, travel the state and country telling all who will listen (and a few who might rather not!) about excellence within the Texas A&M Health Science Center. Every few years, we have the opportunity to prove that excellence through the accreditation process at both the TAMHSC level with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and at the college level as each has an accrediting body. When we get a chance to show others how great we are, we always measure up!HSC President Dr. Nancy W. Dickey

Congratulations to the School of Rural Public Health and Dr. Craig Blakely’s team. They completed their Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) accreditation visit and received high marks. They received a full 7-year accreditation, and I know that everyone is marking their calendars way into the future.

Baylor College of Dentistry just completed their Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) accreditation visit, and the team left with NO recommendations, a couple of suggestions and a long list of recognitions of exemplary performances. I am sure the paperwork that follows will be a full cycle of accreditation as well. Work well done, Dr. Lawrence Wolinsky and his team!

Now, we have only the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) for the Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy, Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) for the College of Medicine and SACS for the TAMHSC. Our first couple of schools certainly set the bar high, and I am sure that the remainder will meet the mark.

The entire TAMHSC is working diligently to prepare for the SACS visit in March 2012. One of the exciting areas of preparation is the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) process. The QEP process was developed by SACS to encourage universities to identify an opportunity, create a plan and implement the plan for quality enhancement.

The TAMHSC’s QEP is designed to improve the critical thinking skills of students across the institution. The topic of our QEP is CARECritically Appraise Relevant Evidence. Through CARE, our students will learn to apply evidence-based decision-making and critical thinking skills in their chosen field. (But most of you already know this – it has been a TAMHSC-wide project from the start!)

As the QEP is developed over the next few months, the following goals will be used as the basis for curriculum development and implementation plans:

Goal 1 – Develop students’ skills in critical thinking.

Goal 2 – Develop students’ skills in evidence-based decision-making.

Goal 3 – Develop capacity and resources to teach critical thinking and evidence- based decision-making.

Over the next few months, the QEP will continue to develop, and special attention will be given to CARE at the upcoming TAMHSC Convocation on Jan. 20, 2012. It goes without saying that a university committed to teaching the health professions must care, and I am confident we will excel at CARE as well. I challenge each of you to get on board with this ambitious project – we will all benefit!

Until next time, best regards. You can always reach me at I value your ideas, learn from your concerns and believe in your commitment.

Best regards,
Nancy W. Dickey, M.D.
President, Texas A&M Health Science Center
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs, The Texas A&M University System

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