By breaking down the complex cycle that allows mosquitoes, tsetse flies, ticks and other arthropods to transmit fatal disease, Yale scientists are providing new ammunition in the fight against malaria and other vector-borne illnesses.
Last July, something went very wrong in New York City’s crow population. Signs of trouble appeared first in the Bronx, where birds were observed flying erratically, staggering on the ground and suffering convulsions.
Ever since its implementation in the 1920s, the Yale System of medical education has been the point of common reference for alumni of the School of Medicine. Ralph I. Horwitz, M.D., chair of the Department of Internal Medicine, touched on its enduring qualities when he addressed faculty recently about the education-review process now under way. “I have not been able to find two people able to agree on exactly what the Yale System is, but there is a strong consensus on the essentials,” he said. It’s an approach to learning that is self-directed and collaborative, rather than competitive. The environment is that of a graduate school. Examinations are for self-assessment, not for grades or class ranking. Learning takes place in small groups rather than in large lectures. And the curriculum should allow free time for reading, independent research and reflection.Alumni have their own memories of how the Yale System shaped their careers in medicine. As the medical school takes an exceptionally thorough look at both how and what it teaches—all in the context of renewing the Yale System—we invited alumni to reminisce about what it meant to them. Their recollections follow.