Merchen named MCG assistant dean for clinical curriculum

Dr. Lee Ann Merchen, director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program at the Medical College of Georgia and Augusta University Health, has been named the medical school’s assistant dean for clinical curriculum, effective April 1.

As the MCG Office of Academic Affairs begins to streamline and redesign the medical school’s curriculum, Merchen will help ensure there is continuity between undergraduate and graduate medical education, including students’ possible earlier exposure to the clinical education that’s been traditionally reserved for students’ third and fourth-years.

“We are excited to know that Dr. Merchen will bring her long-standing commitment to medical education excellence and learner mentorship to the Office of Academic Affairs,” says Dr. D. Douglas Miller, MCG’s senior associate dean for medical education. “She has proven her commitment to both graduate and undergraduate medical education. I know she will bring considerable skills and enthusiasm to our undergraduate medical education program at an important juncture in its continued effort to become the best medical education program in the country.”

“As an experienced program director, she can help us enhance our curriculum in many ways, including preparing students for success in residency,” adds Dr. Renee Page, MCG’s associate dean for curriculum.

Merchen, a faculty member since 2007, has led the Internal Medicine Residency Program since 2013. Prior to that, she served as associate program director for four years and was chief of the Department of Medicine’s Division of Internal Medicine from 2009-14. She is co-creator and co-program director of the Internal Medicine Clinician Scientist Program, one of a few such programs nationally providing research and clinical training through a five-year curriculum to prepare internists for a career that focuses on research.

An honored educator, she received the Exemplary Teaching Award for Undergraduate Education in 2017 and 2019, the Attending of the Year Award in 2015 and the Exemplary Teaching Award for Medical Resident Education in 2014.

She is a member of the American College of Physicians Governor’s Advisory Council, the Southern Society of Clinical Investigation and Women in Philanthropy. Merchen is a 2000 graduate of Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine in Dayton, Ohio, and completed an internal medicine residency, including a year as chief resident, at the University of Cincinnati.

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