Yale School of Medicine (YSM) Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine Dowin Boatright, MD, MBA, MHS, took on an additional role on July 1, 2021— YSM Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) faculty associate for diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) educator development. Boatright joins seven faculty associates, a role the TLC developed in 2014. These part-time positions focused on different areas of expertise are for faculty who lead a program or provide educator development, while maintaining an active role in their home department.
The TLC is dedicated to fostering excellence in education at YSM by supporting educators in all aspects of their teaching and medical education research and scholarship. A key component of excellent education is providing a safe and inclusive learning environment for learners at every level of their professional career —whether at a patient’s bedside, in a clinic, in a classroom, or working with a simulated patient.
A central element in creating a safe and inclusive learning environment is helping educators understand DEI-related issues. In 2020, recognizing the need for educator development in DEI, TLC Director and Associate Dean for Educational Scholarship Janet Hafler, EdD, proposed creating the TLC faculty associate for DEI educator development role to Deputy Dean for Education Jessica Illuzzi, MD, MS, who responded enthusiastically. The role launches as a two-year pilot.
Boatright was a natural choice to fill the new role, given his active involvement in DEI activities through his work on the Department of Emergency Medicine’s Diversity Committee and the Dean’s Advisory Council on LGBTQI+ Affairs. Additionally, his research focuses on such topics such as assessing the prevalence of medical student mistreatment by sex, race/ethnicity, and sexual orientation; understanding microaggressions experienced by URiM students; understanding the role that race/ethnicity plays in residents’ training; and racial disparities in medical student AOA membership. Gail D’Onofrio, MD, MS, chair and Albert E. Kent Professor of Emergency Medicine and professor of epidemiology, strongly supported Boatright taking on this role.
Boatright explains that he and Hafler share the goal of identifying evidence-based practices to ensure an equitable and inclusive learning environment in academic medicine, and that they seek to disseminate these practices to the medical community at Yale and nationally. Boatright is “excited about the opportunity to collaborate with Janet and so many thought leaders in medical education at the TLC.”
Hafler echoes this sentiment. “We are excited to work with Dowin as together we create and offer educator development sessions to address issues of DEI in medical education.” She adds that given his experience and success in medical education research related to DEI, “we also anticipate that Dowin will provide wonderful guidance to our community in their own medical education research projects.”
Hafler notes that the TLC faculty associate model has expanded the TLC’s reach and offers excellent training to faculty and residents who teach at YSM. The TLC website showcases the faculty associates and their significant work in medical education that includes educator development programs focused on clinical teaching, point-of-care ultrasound, and clinical reasoning, as well as learning through simulation and standardized patients, and team-based learning.