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For Release: March 22, 2012
Contact: Derik Hertel, 603-348-5919

Dartmouth Medical School Names Richard Simons Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education

Richard J. Simons, MD

Hanover, N.H.—Dartmouth Medical School (DMS) Dean Wiley "Chip" Souba, MD, ScD, MBA, announced today that Richard J. Simons, MD, an internationally recognized leader in academic medicine, has been named DMS Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education and Associate Vice President for Health Affairs at Dartmouth.

Simons, presently the Vice Dean for Educational Affairs for Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, brings to Dartmouth extensive experience overseeing undergraduate (MD) and graduate (residency) medical education programs. While at Penn State, he also spearheaded the creation of major curricular innovations at both the medical student and resident level. He begins at Dartmouth on June 1.

"We're delighted to have recruited one of the top medical education leaders in the nation in Rich Simons," said Souba, vice president for health affairs at Dartmouth. "Dr. Simons brings the deep experience I was looking for—not only in student and resident education, but also in curriculum innovation, national accreditation preparation, and the seamless integration of all medical education programs."

"Rich is a great fit for our focus on creating physician leaders who will help solve our most vexing problems in health care. He's passionate about medical education and will play a leading role in our curriculum reform efforts, managing how we integrate new content—such as health care delivery science and global health—into a curricular design that best serves society," added Souba.

"I'm looking forward to being a part of Chip's strong vision for Dartmouth Medical School, which is an institution that is committed to core values of respect, trust and integrity," said Simons. "I sense a real momentum at the school: Dartmouth President Jim Kim has committed to raising the prominence of DMS, top medical students and excellent faculty members are choosing to come to Dartmouth, and there is a special opportunity to work with Dartmouth Medical School faculty on a curriculum that will prepare students to be the future leaders of the nation's health care system. There's a unique genuineness, enthusiasm and commitment for the new vision among DMS medical education leaders."

After receiving his medical degree from the Penn State College of Medicine in May 1981, Simons completed his residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan Hospital in June 1984. He then served as Chief Resident and Instructor in the Department of Medicine at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. He also completed a Geriatrics Fellowship at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC. While Simons' clinical role is general internal medicine, his major focus has been on medical education, having served as a Clerkship Director and Director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.

Simons was instrumental in establishing the College of Medicine's formal system for clinical skills evaluation by developing the standardized patient program and objective structured clinical examinations. In his role of Vice Dean for Educational Affairs at Penn State, he organized and developed novel approaches for teaching the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education core competencies, initiated the Clinical Skills and Advisory Program for the College of Medicine, and led several major curricular changes for the College of Medicine. He also coordinated the medical school's self study for the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) accreditation process that resulted in a very favorable LCME report and final 8-year accreditation.

Playing a prominent professional role nationally, Simons has served on test-writing committees for the National Board of Medical Examiners, the In-Service Training Exam for Internal Medicine (past Chair) and recently completed his term on the question writing committee for the American Board of Internal Medicine. He was the former President of the Clerkship Directors of Internal Medicine and recently completed his term serving as a member of the RRC for Internal Medicine. His work in medical education has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine, The Journal of General Internal Medicine and the American Journal of Medicine.

Recently elected to Mastership in the American College of Physicians—recognition that will be presented to him at the annual meeting of the ACP in New Orleans in April 2012—Simons is certified in the practice of Internal Medicine and Geriatrics by the American Board of Internal Medicine. He continues to practice general internal medicine in both the ambulatory and inpatient setting, and continues to have major teaching responsibilities for both students and residents.

"We're looking forward to working with Dr. Simons at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center to strengthen the continuum of education—from predoctoral to graduate to continuing medical education," said James N. Weinstein, DO, CEO and President of Dartmouth-Hitchcock.

David Nierenberg, MD, the Edward Tulloh Krumm Professor of Medicine and of Pharmacology and Toxicology at DMS and current Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education, will turn his focus to developing the medical school's clinical education partnership with California Pacific Medical Center, while continuing to teach medical students, conduct research and treat patients.

"I am deeply indebted to David for his conscientiousness and commitment in leading medical education at Dartmouth for the past 15 years," said Souba. "Under his leadership, our students have thrived, the breadth of their educational experiences has grown, and the quality of our applicants has never been better. Given David's judiciousness and experience, he will be an enormously valuable asset during this leadership transition. He will continue to teach and help us further develop our partnership with California Pacific Medical Center. I have also asked him to serve as a Senior Advising Dean so that we have the benefit of his wisdom."

Dartmouth Medical School, founded in 1797, strives to improve the lives of the people it serves: students, patients and local and global communities. The School builds healthier communities through innovations in research, education, and patient care. The nation’s fourth-oldest medical school, DMS has been home to many firsts in medical education and practice, including creating the first clinical X-ray in America, the first multispecialty intensive care unit, the first comprehensive examination of variations in U.S. health care costs (The Dartmouth Atlas), and the first Center for Health Care Delivery Science, which launched in 2010. As one of America’s top medical schools, DMS is committed to creating a new breed of physician leaders who will help solve our most vexing challenges in health care.


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