Medical Curriculum Leader Joins VP&S

Rosa Lee, MD

Rosa Lee. Photo: City University of New York.

Rosa Lee, MD, who led the implementation of a new mission-driven curriculum at the City University of New York School of Medicine, has been named senior associate dean for curricular affairs at the Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. Her appointment, effective Aug. 1, 2022, was announced by Monica Lypson, MD, vice dean for education at VP&S.

At VP&S, Lee will work to strengthen the development of a curriculum that ensures a student-centered approach to learning and builds on inclusivity and anti-racism efforts that reflect societal and patient needs as well as strong scientific foundations. “Our coordinated efforts to strengthen the curriculum to further our development of leaders in science and medicine will be championed under Dr. Lee’s leadership,” says Lypson.

A board-certified internist and primary care physician, Lee received her MD degree from Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine at UCSF. She held hospital appointments at Saint Barnabas Hospital in the Bronx, Montefiore Medical Center, and Rhode Island Hospital. Before joining the CUNY faculty, she held academic appointments at Brown University and Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Lee joined CUNY in 2011 as a faculty member and became assistant dean for the clinical science curriculum at the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education (now CUNY School of Medicine) in 2015. In 2018, she became associate dean for curriculum and assessment.

She worked with faculty across disciplines to create a curriculum for a new, mission-driven BS/MD program that integrates basic sciences, clinical skills, and population health across the seven-year program. She oversaw implementation of the new curriculum and led the school’s curriculum evaluation processes through academic phase reviews, comprehensive program evaluations, and continuous quality improvement initiatives. She also developed a novel student champions program to inform and guide curriculum improvement and innovation through student engagement.

She developed and oversaw the medical school’s first program evaluation, which utilized outcome data from the first two graduating classes that followed the curriculum. The program evaluation, which included data from internally constructed assessments, student performance on national standardized examinations, and data from residency program directors, met compliance with LCME accreditation standards and also demonstrated that the initial cohorts of graduates had successfully met the school’s educational program objectives.

“Columbia and VP&S are fortunate to have identified a candidate with a student-centered approach to learning,” says Lypson. “Her expertise in ensuring outreach to our local communities as we build the curricular content will be beneficial, and as we move to ensure that we cover the breadth of the basic sciences throughout the MD program her prior experience of ensuring that content over a seven-year program will add value to our work.”

“We are fortunate indeed to have Dr. Lee coming to join our leadership team at this pivotal point in our curricular development,” says Michael J. Devlin, MD, professor of psychiatry at CUMC and chair of the search committee for the curricular affairs position. “Her background, values, and skills are ideally aligned with our goal of shaping the scientifically grounded, clinically skilled, community-minded, anti-racist VP&S graduates who will distinguish themselves as the guiding lights of the next generation of physicians.”

Lee cites the opportunity to work with VP&S faculty members to uphold the excellence and rigor of a renowned medical education program and to advance curricular innovation and equity. “I am particularly excited by the opportunity to work with the medical school’s leadership team and faculty to align curricular affairs with student performance and success and to address a pressing national need to build an anti-racist medical education program that can effectively produce physicians who are prepared to become national leaders in improving health and health equity.”