University of Houston: UH Receives $1M Gift from Houston Methodist for Medical Education Professorship

A $1 million gift from Houston Methodist to the University of Houston will establish a new endowed professorship to be held by a nationally prominent thought leader in medical education. This first-of-its-kind role at UH will further propel the city of Houston and the region as global leaders in health care innovation.

The holder of the Houston Methodist Professorship of Medical Education will have a joint appointment in the UH College of Education and the UH College of Medicine, and an adjunct appointment at the Houston Methodist Academic Institute (HMAI), home to some of the world’s preeminent physician-scientists who are working collaboratively to translate discoveries in the lab into treatments for patients.

“Houston Methodist is delighted to collaborate with the University of Houston,” said Dr. H. Dirk Sostman, president of the Houston Methodist Academic Institute. “Because of University of Houston’s multi-college structure, we have the unique ability to collaborate on many fronts, especially in educating physicians and other health professionals. The Houston Methodist Professorship of Medical Education will help strengthen our efforts to continue developing an unparalleled learning environment for training future medical leaders in the art, science and humanism of clinical care, research and education here in Houston and beyond.”

As part of the University’s “$100 Million Challenge” for chairs and professorships, the gift will be matched one-to-one to create a $2 million endowment. The matching grant program is funded by an anonymous donor and encourages the UH community to contribute to the University’s bold future in research and scholarship around complex global issues, including health care innovation.

The learning scientist hired to hold the Houston Methodist Professorship of Medical Education will be expected to have a proven track record of impactful research and achievements recognized by membership in the National Academy of Science, National Academy of Medicine or another national academy related to the field of study.

“We are committed to building a faculty which will engage students in determining real-world solutions for today’s most prevalent health challenges,” said Paula Myrick Short, UH senior vice president for academic affairs and provost. “Thanks to Houston Methodist, we will hire an accomplished medical educator to help facilitate the evolving link between the two institutions for the purpose of designing, directing and overseeing projects that improve the teaching expertise at both.”

The University of Houston and Houston Methodist Academic Institute have a shared goal to train physicians and medical professionals of the future and deliver high-value care to their patients, according to Dr. Stephen Spann, vice president for medical affairs at UH and founding dean of the UH College of Medicine.

“Key to providing improved health care for future generations is the willingness of health professionals and institutions to work together for the betterment of patients and students,” said Spann. “By combining forces in research and education, the health care system becomes stronger and more cost-effective for everyone.”

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