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John Francis, MD, PhD, Appointed Associate Dean for Student Affairs

August 25, 2021
by Abigail Roth

John Francis, MD, PhD, has been appointed associate dean for student affairs at Yale School of Medicine (YSM), effective November 1, 2021. YSM Dean Nancy J. Brown, MD, and YSM Deputy Dean for Education Jessica Illuzzi, MD, MS, stated they were “delighted” to make this announcement in an August 25, 2021 communication to the YSM community.

Francis is a highly respected medical education leader with over 11 years of experience in student affairs. Illuzzi says, “John brings to this role significant knowledge of and insight into the experiences, concerns, and challenges of medical students. He has a deep familiarity with Yale School of Medicine and the Yale System of Medical Education.”

Since late 2014, Francis has served as campus associate dean for student and multicultural affairs at the Athens Campus of the Medical College of Georgia. During this time, he also has been an associate professor in the Department of Internal Medicine at the school.

Francis was an intern and resident in Internal Medicine at Yale New Haven Hospital (YNHH) from 2000 to 2003. He then completed a three-year fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Johns Hopkins Hospital before returning to Yale, first as a clinical instructor for two years and then as assistant professor for six years in the AIDS Program, Section of Infectious Diseases.

During his time at Yale, he served as a course director in Microbiology and Infectious Diseases for the Yale Physician Associate Program and a director of the Infectious Diseases Clinical Elective. Additionally, he was a medical student academic advisor for the Office of Student Affairs for five years, providing him with the valuable experience of advising 125 medical students yearly throughout their training. For three years during his time at Yale, he served as chief of Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control for the Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System.

Francis received several awards at Yale including, among others: the Admired Physician, Teacher and Role Model Award—AIDS Program, Section of Infectious Diseases; the Edwin Cadman Teacher of the Year Award—Internal Medicine Department, Primary Care Residency Program; and the Didactic Instruction Teacher of the Year Award-for Dedication and Excellence in the Classroom—Physician Associate Program. Francis also has multiple awards from the Medical College of Georgia, including the Commencement Award of Appreciation from the class of 2019. Additionally, the Athens Campus Gold Humanism Honor Society created a student award in his honor.

In the associate dean role, Francis will be a member of the senior education leadership team and will lead the school’s Office of Student Affairs. He will be responsible for overseeing the creation and provision of services and activities that support the academic, personal, and professional development of students throughout their time at YSM. Working with students, faculty, staff, and other stakeholder groups, he will promote values and implement activities that foster a welcoming, diverse, and inclusive community where all students can thrive.

In their message to the YSM community, Brown and Illuzzi thanked the search committee, co-chaired by Oluwatosin Adeyemo, MD, MPH, and Andrea Asnes, MD, MSW, “for their diligence and thoughtfulness, which has led to this outstanding appointment.” Committee members included Sarwat Chaudhry, MD; Alexandria Garino, PhD, PA-C; Fred Gorelick, MD; N’Kenge Haines; and Linda Jackson, as well as student members Amber Acquaye, Adrian Acuna Higaki, Abner Arias-Olson, Mariana Budge, Carrie Flynn, John Havlik, Ragini Luthra, and Autumn Nobles.

Brown and Illuzzi also expressed their gratitude to Nancy Angoff, MD ’90, MPH ’81, MEd, for her willingness to extend her time as associate dean for student affairs through October 31, 2021, and then serve in an advisory capacity to Francis through December 31, 2021.

Submitted by Abigail Roth on August 24, 2021