Health sciences Forward with Integrity update
The Daily News is providing updates about how each of McMaster's Faculties is advancing the FWI priorities. Today, Dean and VP of Health Sciences John Kelton provides this update.
The President’s Forward with Integrity letter is serving as a welcome stimulus for innovation within the Faculty of Health Sciences, says Dean and Vice-President John Kelton.
“These priorities fit the culture of our Faculty,” said Kelton, noting that since the beginning of the nursing school in the 1940s, and more recently with the founding of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine in the 1960s, all the health professional students of the Faculty have spent half of their learning in community health settings.
“Every year we have students in many communities in Ontario as well as across Canada and abroad, and the experience they gain is essential to their learning to be health professionals.”
The President’s letter has been discussed at all levels of the Faculty, starting with the Faculty Executive Council during discussions earlier this year, which led to the renewal of its strategic plan. Faculty members have participated on the advisory panel and each of the task forces created by the University for dialogue on the letter’s directions.
The Faculty’s new strategic planning themes are: Committing to innovation in learning and discovery; sustaining an enabling culture consistent with the Faculty’s tenets; advancing FHS influence and leadership profile locally and globally, and ensuring fiscal strength and stability.
Strategic partnerships have been added to the Faculty’s tenets of interprofessional collaboration; commitment to our communities; accountability and responsibility; innovation; excellence; integrity and respect and optimism.
Recent developments in the Faculty have also reinforced an active response to the President’s priorities for the student experience, community engagement, research and internationalization.
The School of Nursing has a Health in the Hubs initiative, working with three north-end Hamilton communities to address priority health issues. The school also established a new community site at the Homestead Christian Care’s Dr. John M. Perkins Centre, allowing nursing students to learn in the community.
The Mac-OBESITY research program has been established, pulling together a wide group from basic scientists to clinicians across several disciplines to tackle the issue of the childhood obesity epidemic.
Accomplishments in these areas are also being recognized. For example: Last month the Faculty’s team behind PIPER, the Program for Interprofessional Practice, Education and Research, was awarded the Alan Blizzard Award, the top national award of the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.
“President Deane’s Forward with Integrity letter is igniting initiatives at both the Faculty Executive and the school, program and department levels, which is an excellent approach,” said Kelton.