Joseph Kolars, MD, MACP

Senior Associate Dean for Education and Global Initiatives
Josiah Macy, Jr., Professor of Health Professions Education
Director, Global REACH
Professor of Internal Medicine
Countries of Interest: Brazil, China, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Nepal, Peru, Tanzania, Uganda, Vietnam, Zimbabwe

System-strengthening in global health; human resources for health in low-income settings; assessment of teaching quality; efficacy of medical learning venues; educational outcomes; measurement of learner competency; educating trainees to improve patient care.

Dr. Kolars has been on faculty at UMMS since 2009.   As Senior Associate Dean for Education and Global Initiatives, he oversees medical student, graduate, resident/fellow, and post-doctoral education as well as continuing medical education.

He has received numerous awards for education and teaching including the 2019 Abraham Flexner Award for Distinguished Service to Medical Education from the American Association of Medical Colleges.  Dr. Kolars has served as Program Director for Internal Medicine Residency and fellowship programs at UM and at Mayo Clinic.  His team at the UM is one of the leading schools in the American Medical Association Transforming Medical Education initiative.  A member of the Fogarty International Center Advisory Council, he is also Co-Principal Investigator on their Northern Pacific Global Health Research Fellows Training Consortium.

With the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Kolars lead their strategies for strengthening medical education in sub-Saharan Africa.  He played key roles in the sub-Saharan Africa Medical School Study (SAMSS) survey of medical schools in Africa and has been a regular participant in NIH’s Medical Education Partnership Initiative and AfreHealth Programs. Between 1996-99 he lived in Shanghai with his family to establish one of China’s first western health care systems.  Since 2010, he has been the co-director for the Joint Institute for Translational and Clinical Research with Peking University of Health Sciences.

A Consortium of Universities for Global Health (CUGH) Board Member since 2017, he will begin his term as Chair of the Board in 2022.  A practicing gastroenterologist, he obtained his M.D. degree in 1982 from the University of Minnesota Medical School and completed his post-graduate training at the University of Michigan.  His full C.V. can be viewed here.