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Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine® Fast Facts

About ELAM

The Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine® (ELAM) Program for Women is the only in-depth national program dedicated to preparing senior women faculty at schools of medicine, dentistry, and public health to effect sustained positive change as institutional leaders. ELAM's intensive one-year fellowship program of executive education, personal leadership assessments and coaching, and networking and mentoring activities supports ELAM fellows as they:

  • Develop a broader vision of their role within their academic health centers.
  • Enhance their leadership effectiveness, understanding of strategic finance, and ability to lead organizational change.
  • Become part of an active resource network of women leaders.

ELAM is part of the International Center for Executive Leadership in Academics (ICELA at Drexel®), a core program of the Institute for Women's Health and Leadership® at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pa.

ELAM was established in 1995 to carry on the legacy of advancing women in medicine begun by the Female Medical College of Pennsylvania, the nation's first women's medical school and predecessor of today's Drexel University College of Medicine.

ELAM continues to support the leadership development of alumnae through face-to-face and virtual outlets and events. These include a biweekly e-newsletter, alumnae gatherings at national meetings, and regional events. In 2011, ELAM held its first professional development program for alumnae, with over 80 attendees.

ELAM has received national recognition, including the following awards and honors:

  • 1999 American Council on Education's Office of Women in Higher Education Network Leadership Award
  • 2004 American Dental Association's Dr. Edward B. Shils Entrepreneurial Education Fund Award
  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant (2001-2006) to evaluate impact of program and develop a theory for how women learn leadership
  • NIH grant (2009-2013) to study barriers to success for women in academic medicine
  • 2010 Association of American Medical Colleges' Women in Medicine Leadership Development Award

Support for ELAM fellowship program and alumnae activities comes from:

  • Program fees
  • Drexel University College of Medicine
  • The Hedwig van Ameringen/Patricia Kind Endowment
  • Academic Sustaining Memberships
  • WMC-MCP Alumnae/i Trust Fund
  • Corporate and private contributors
  • Individual and class gifts to ELAM's Innovation and Legacy Funds

ELAM's Outcomes and Impact on Graduates, Organizations, and the Nation

Since the program's inception, approximately 16% of participants identified themselves as racial or ethnic minorities (African American, Asian American/Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latina, Native American/Alaskan Native).

Since the program's inception, 88% of accredited U.S. medical schools and more than 63% of accredited U.S. dental schools have sponsored fellows. 70 schools have had 5 or more fellows, and of those, 31 have had 10 or more fellows. Since the program opened to schools of public health in 2006, 16 public health faculty have completed the program.

ELAM graduates now number nearly 900, and serve in numerous leadership positions – department head through university president – at over 210 academic health centers and organizations internationally. Currently, ELAM graduates number:

  • 14 of the 26 women deans at U.S. accredited medical schools, 7 of the 11 women deans at U.S. dental schools, and 1 of the 13 women deans at U.S. public health schools. In addition, 4 ELAM graduates are deans of U.S. graduate schools.
  • 127 department chairs at medical schools, 11 at dental schools, and 9 at public health schools.
  • 105 center directors at medical schools, 2 at dental schools, and 7 at public health schools.
  • 143 associate, senior associate and vice deans at medical schools, 18 at dental schools, and 10 at public health schools.
  • 48 chief executive or academic officers (presidents and chief executive officers, provosts).
  • 21 associate/vice/senior associate provosts.
  • 38 vice presidents.

In addition to a wide range of descriptive papers that have established ELAM's leadership development as a model for other programs, ELAM-based research shows that:

  • Deans at medical and dental schools in the U.S. and Canada reported positive impact of ELAM alumnae on their schools and the alumnae themselves, including increased eligibility for promotion.
  • Compared to other mid-level and senior women faculty, ELAM participants scored higher on 16 leadership indicators including administrative leadership attainment, full professor academic rank, leadership competencies and readiness, and leadership aspirations and education.
  • Self-efficacy is increased by participation in the ELAM program.

Fellows develop IAPs, in collaboration with their deans or other senior officials, that address needs and priorities of home institutions and promote organizational change. In the past two years, fellows have developed clinical, research, educational and administrative initiatives that address a broad range of organizational challenges. These initiatives have resulted in:

  • New medical and dental curricula design and implementation.
  • Comprehensive faculty mentoring and career development program development.
  • Translational centers for biomedical research, clinical innovation, and community engagement creation.
  • New recruitment and retention policies for faculty.
  • Global health research and outreach strategies.
  • Faculty performance and compensation standards design and implementation.
  • New approaches to grant procurement and philanthropy.
  • Clinical quality improvement program design and implementation.

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ELAM is a core program of the Institute for Women's Health and Leadership at Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pa. The Institute continues the legacy of advancing women in medicine that began in 1850 with the founding of the Female Medical College of Pennsylvania, the nation's first women's medical school and a predecessor of today's Drexel University College of Medicine.

ELAM is part of the International Center for Executive Leadership in Academics (ICELA at Drexel®) at Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pa.