As we approach the College of Medicine’s 65th commencement, I am reminded of my own graduation from Einstein more than 40 years ago, which launched my career in academic medicine and is the reason for any successes that I have enjoyed.
Since my return to Einstein, we’ve faced enormous challenges, mostly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But we have also experienced tremendous success—hitting record numbers in National Institutes of Health funding, hiring more than 40 faculty members to staff the Montefiore Einstein Cancer Center, and, just this year, receiving the second-largest gift in the College of Medicine’s long and distinguished history. Additionally, Einstein became a fully accredited and independent degree-granting medical school, revamped the medical school curriculum, recruited outstanding people to key leadership positions, and reorganized its basic science departments. (See highlights, here.)
In yet another success story, this issue’s cover article, “Healing Child and Teen Mental Health,” describes the many research and community programs that Einstein and Montefiore have launched to address mental-health challenges in the Bronx.
Drug development is another area where we’re making important advances. Four Einstein scientists, working in tandem with our office of biotechnology and business development, have developed treatments for conditions including Ebola, osteoarthritis, and cancer that are now in clinical trials (see “Translating Discoveries Into Therapies”).
For me, the successful end of this academic year is bittersweet because it will be my last as Einstein’s dean. I am extremely proud of the College of Medicine’s accomplishments during the past five years, due to the efforts of our outstanding faculty, students, and staff, as well as our excellent Board of Trustees.
The essence of Einstein and its people hasn’t changed since my time here as a student. I remain strongly committed to the College of Medicine and will continue to support Einstein as I enter the next phase of my career. It has been the honor of a lifetime to serve as your dean, and I thank you all for this amazing privilege.