Traditionally, senior faculty have been invited to academic institutions for grand rounds, invited talks and scientific programs. In contrast, junior faculty are rarely invited to these same programs until they have achieved a level of success and recognition. However, junior faculty could benefit from earlier opportunities to network, establish collaborations, observe experts in their field perform novel procedures and disseminate their research. As a component of the Michigan Promise, the Department of Surgery Office of Faculty & Resident Life is in a unique position to foster these experiences for junior faculty. The Junior Faculty Exchange was initiated between the University of Michigan and 9 peer institutions last year.
- Increase national visibility of our junior faculty
- Allow junior faculty to network and establish inter-institutional collaborations
- Develop/Observe new operative techniques, skills or interests
- Meet and learn from exceptional junior faculty from partner institutions
As this program has taken shape, we have had the opportunity to develop a network of peer institutions to jointly participate in the exchange. These include: Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dartmouth, Duke, Florida, Johns Hopkins, Massachusetts General Hospital, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Stanford and Vanderbilt. This year, we have expanded to include the University of Wisconsin.
How It Works
U-M and a peer institution exchange junior faculty members for 3-4 days. During this time, guest faculty meet with potential mentors and collaborators at the peer institution. Guest faculty also deliver an invited lecture to faculty and residents and discuss their research.
Expanding Opportunities for Junior Faculty: Early Success Stories
The Junior Faculty Exchange has been a tremendous opportunity for junior faculty to gain recognition and foster collaboration across institutions. These experiences have helped to spur new collaborations, including grants.
Matthew "Macky" Neal, MD, a faculty visitor from the University of Pittsburgh, described the experience:
“The Michigan Junior Faculty Exchange has been a highlight of my early career. The incredibly hospitable and gracious hosts in Acute Care Surgery, Vascular, and the Jobst labs have become immediate friends and colleagues. In keeping with the goal of building relationships, we have already designed a multi-center research project involving teams at Michigan and Pittsburgh to address a research question inspired by terrific conversation during the visit. This program clearly has the ability to rapidly establish and accelerate collaborations and has provided an unprecedented learning opportunity for which I am exceptionally grateful.”
Lesly Dossett, MD, a faculty member from Michigan Medicine's Department of Surgery, visited Stanford through the Junior Faculty Exchange Program and reflected:
"Visiting Stanford as part of the Junior Faculty Exchange Program was definitely one of the highlights of my academic year. The advantages of participating in this program were:
- Meeting or reconnecting with national leaders in surgery and surgical health services research. Some of these new connections have already led to further sponsorship at national meetings.
- Getting feedback on my research from a diverse group of high-level investigators who hadn’t previously seen my proposals. Much of this feedback was directly incorporated into a grant proposal.
- Visiting another surgical health services research group to learn about how teams and programs are being developed in a different environment.
- Meeting students and trainees from a different program and learning about their unique opportunities and challenges.
- Participating in another Department’s conferences and seminars to understand similarities and differences how these are approached.
This was a phenomenal opportunity, and I really can’t see why this shouldn’t be more widely implemented."
Fostering the development of Junior Faculty is a critical mission of the Office of Faculty & Resident Life and the Michigan Promise. The Faculty Exchange is just one part of this amazing program that truly makes Michigan Surgery the Leaders and Best.
Reach out to join the conversation or to learn more about how to implement the Michigan Promise. Connect with the Department of Surgery or our faculty on Twitter to share your ideas or get in touch with the Office of Faculty & Resident Life to schedule a Michigan Promise presentation at your institution. You can also fill out our Michigan Promise Inquiry Form with any questions or comments.
Department of Surgery
2210F Taubman Center
1500 E. Medical Center Dr.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109