MedEdMorphosis 2021

Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact


Realizing the Exceptional Learning Experience

In response to internal and external opportunities for growth, and as part of the OneU Strategy Refresh, UUSOM leadership announces MedEdMorphosis 2021: a comprehensive campaign to refresh and unify the medical education program




Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Rationale for MedEdMorphosis: UUSOM has a long history of excellence in its medical education program as manifested by its reputation, legislative support, and achievements of graduates. However, at the start of 2021, a convergence of factors calls for an urgent course correction. These factors include:

  1. Vulnerabilities exposed by COVID pandemic in our current systems of education
  2. Health disparities throughout Utah associated with racism, lack of diversity, inclusion and equity
  3. Persistent, challenges in the learning environment resulting in undesired outcomes, including mistreatment
  4. Increasingly competitive residency match
  5. Workforce demands for more physicians, especially in rural and underserved areas
  6. Burden of debt on graduates, constraining career choices
  7. Opportunities afforded by a new medical school building
  8. Opportunities afforded by Step 1 scores being reported as P/F only after January, 2022
  9. Philanthropy providing new resources
  10. Advancements of digital technologies


Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

MedEdMorphosis Vision Statement: Through MedEdMorphosis, we will optimize health in Utah and the intermountain region through more explicit and coordinated attention to:

  1. Anti-racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion
  2. Learning partnerships with providers and health systems, including in rural and underserved areas
  3. Value-driven, science-based, technology-enhanced, exceptional learning experiences
  4. Flexible, mastery-based advancement which fosters professional identity development and ensures readiness for successful careers


Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Guiding principles. Building on the momentum well established by core educators under the OneU banner of the Exceptional Learning Experience, MedEdMorphosis will establish and identify and follow a core set of guiding principles. These principles reflect our commitment to:

  1. Relationships
  2. Community
  3. Diversity
  4. Partnerships
  5. Rural/underserved primary care
  6. Professionalism
  7. Excellence
  8. Continuous improvement
  9. Learning-centeredness


Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Alignment with OneU Strategy Refresh: MedEdMorphosis will advance health in Utah by aligning guiding principles, resources, and activities with UHealth and the University at large



Envisioned State

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Envisioned State of Medical Education Program as a result of MedEdMorphosis

This a summary of components of the medical student education program as they currently exist and as they are envisioned as a result of MedEdMorphosis 2021. Please consider items in bold text as nonnegotiable ‘givens.’ These items were decided upon by Dr. Michael Good, Dean SOM, and Dr. Wayne Samuelson, Vice Dean for Education, with input from the Associate Deans for Admissions, Curriculum, HEDI, Finance, Graduate Medical Education, and Student Affairs. (See below, for recent events which informed the selection of these givens.) Space is added in each section (with ?’s) for additional components not yet included.

Current Vs Envisioned Medical Education Program



Last updated: 2/23/2021  /  Click here for page content contact


Guiding coalition:


1. We will engage students, residents, staff, faculty, and school leaders in an inclusive, open process, including focus groups, town halls, task forces, and frequent large group 'check-ins'

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2. With a small leadership team at the core, we will organize larger, intersecting groups to ensure representation of perspective, delegation of responsibility, and division of labor, thus allowing us to optimize our most valuable resource – time






Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact



1. Due to the importance/urgency of the situation, as described in the rationale and stemming from a desire to link MedEdMorphosis with the new building to open in 2023, our goal is to begin a first phase of implementation as early as 2022


2. This figure visualizes the timeline of MedEdMorphosis past, present, and future, including important factors that have informed the initiative





Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Goals/outcomes for Retreat Monday, January 25th: At the conclusion of the Retreat, participants will understand:

  1. The vision for MedEdMorphosis
  2. How university leadership shares in and supports the vision, including Ruth Watkins, Michael Good, Wayne Samuelson, associate and assistant deans, department chairs, etc.
  3. The why and the urgency for change
  4. How ongoing initiatives inform, feed into, or become part of MedEdMorphosis
  5. Current “givens”  and their rationale 
  6. When and how students, residents, staff and faculty will have opportunity to share reactions,  give input, and get involved
  7. The work ahead and how progress will be monitored, communicated and adjusted

Action Items

Last updated: 3/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Post Retreat Action Items:


Exceptional Learning Experience

Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Strategically Transforming Medical Eduction

As medicine and health care continue to evolve, the nature of medical education is also changing. Medical schools have an obligation, rooted in their missions, to train students and educators to be prepared for this changing landscape.

The School of Medicine (SOM) is undertaking a strategic transformation process in education starting in 2019 to emphasize community, relationships, and professionalism in the learning culture. The initiative is called the Exceptional Learning Experience (ELE) and will be linked to University of Utah’s Exceptional Education Experience.

Click here to learn more about the ELE

2021 Core Educator Retreat Content

Last updated: 2/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact

Dr Michael L Good, CEO of University of Utah Health, Dean of the University of Utah School of Medicine, and Senior Vice President of Health Sciences: 

Welcoming Remarks and Introduction to MedEdMorphosis:



Dr Wayne M SamuelsonVice Dean for Education School of Medicine:

The Launch of MedEdMorphosis: a comprehensive review and refresh of the School’s Medical Student Education Program:



Dr Sara M Lamb, Associate Dean of Education, Curriculum:

Next Steps for MedEdMorphosis:



James A Agutter, Director of the Spark Design Initiative and the Director of the Bachelor of University Studies in the Office of Undergraduate Studies:

Innovation and Creativity with MedEdMorphosis:



Dr Sara M Lamb, Associate Dean of Education, Curriculum:

2021 Core Educator Annual Awards:



Last updated: 3/18/2021  /  Click here for page content contact
Contact Shari Veverka about attending any upcoming events


Planned Upcoming Events:




  • Staff Retreat – Tuesday, March 2nd from 1:00 – 3:00 pm
  • Student Retreat – Tuesday, March 9th from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
  • Faculty/Community Partner/Resident Retreats
    • Monday, March 8th from 4:00 – 5:00 pm
    • Tuesday, March 23rd from 12:00 – 1:00 pm
    • Friday, March 26th from 8:00 – 9:00 am

Topical Needs Assessment Discussions: