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May 27, 1968

Role of the Dean and Faculty in Governance of the Medical School

Author Affiliations

From the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle. Read before the 64th annual Congress on Medical Education, sponsored by the AMA Council on Medical Education, Chicago, Feb 12, 1968.

JAMA. 1968;204(9):785-788. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140220033009

We need only look at the turnover rate of deans of medical schools to realize that something is amiss. The average dean is not totally happy in his job. This is in part because of the pressures put on him from many sources, but it is also because he is usually untrained for the role he must play. Further, as soon as he leaves the fold of the faculty and assumes the mantle of dean, he is invested in the eyes of the faculty with a strange and wonderful aura. Edward Rosenheim, Jr., professor of English at the University of Chicago, has written a classic "Letter to a New Dean."1 Addressing his friend Fats, the new Dean of Floodwater State University, Rosenheim comments,

You are, of course, an amiable and humble man; beware, however, the illusion that the deanship involves a subtle, special expertise, the mastery of a craft whose