Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MU-COM) welcomed medical students and their physician mentors to the inaugural Meaningful Medicine Mentoring Symposium on Saturday, August 15. Focusing on humanistic patient care, the keynote address—Compassion in Healing: A Perspective on Humanism in Medicine from Burundi—was given by Deogratias Niyizonkiza, founder and CEO of Village Health Works and the protagonist of Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy Kidder’s New York Times Bestseller Strength in What Remains.
The keynote address was followed by an interactive presentation, Values in Humanistic Medical Practice given by MU-COM’s Semler Endowed Chair of Medical Ethics, Dr. Jason Eberl. Dr. Jill Helphinstine, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine delivered a working session for attendees that focused on physician burn-out.
The symposium concluded by recognizing four outstanding mentors in the community identified by a medical student nomination process. The following physicians were recognized for roles models of humanism in medicine:
- Mentor of the Year – Dr. James Lemons
- Distinguished Mentor – Dr. Marin Behrad
- Distinguished Mentor – Dr. Craig Nadleson
- Distinguished Mentor – Dr. Ayaz Shaikh
Dr. James Lemons was awarded Mentor of the Year and nominated by Saajidha Rizvydeen, OMS II (Class of 2018). She described him this way in her narrative, “Whether he was taking extra time to walk a patient to their appointment or to ask the family of a premature baby if they needed a place to sleep for the weekend, Dr. Lemons embodies all the traits that I consider primal in a physician. He is empathetic, knowledgeable, hard-working, and passionate.”
In remarks he provided in the video of finalists Dr. Lemons said, “This is the first time I think that I have formally received recognition as a mentor and I had no idea Marian was looking at this perspective. I applaud the leadership at Marian for doing this.” Dr. Lemons is a renowned neonatologist, researcher and professor who advocates worldwide to help vulnerable women and children. He is responsible for raising more than $3 million to build the Riley Mother Baby Hospital in Eldoret, Kenya.
The Meaningful Medicine Mentoring Program at MU-COM began in September 2014 and is made possible by a grant from the Arnold P. Gold Foundation. The program team consists of co-directors Dr. Sherry Jimenez, Assistant Dean for Educational Development and Dr. Emily Young, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Board Certified in Pediatrics and Internal Medicine and Mrs. Erika Sauer, Clinical Affairs Administrative Assistant.