Dear Colleagues,

Sally Santen, M.D., Ph.D.


I am delighted to announce the appointment of Sally Santen, M.D., Ph.D., who will serve as the medical school’s senior associate dean for evaluation, assessment and scholarship of learning.

She has an enthusiasm for helping other faculty advance their skills as well as for the use of evaluation and assessment in the area of medical education and health. This will be a great benefit to the medical school, and we are looking forward to her energy and new ideas.

Leading the Office of Evaluation, Assessment and Scholarship of Learning in Health Care, Dr. Santen will advance and improve our commitment to lifelong learning, which is a core tenet in the medical field. In her role, she will provide leadership and support to our faculty and programs by bringing creative assessment, evaluation and new approaches to medical education, research development and health care across the continuum – from medical students to practicing physicians.

Dr. Santen brings a wealth of experience, having most recently served as the University of Michigan’s assistant dean for educational research and quality improvement since 2011. With the support of a five-year $1.1 million grant from the American Medical Association, she was co-principal investigator on an initiative to transform the medical school curriculum.

She has published extensively on medical education innovations and research. Her publications include responsible and trustworthy trainee handovers from medical school to residency, moving the national Step 1 medical licensing exam to after clerkships, and the assessment of medical students and residents.

An emergency medicine physician by training, Dr. Santen also was associate chair of education in the Department of Emergency Medicine at U-M. In 2016, she was nationally recognized with the Hal Jayne Excellence in Education Award from the Society of Academic Emergency Medicine for her outstanding contributions to emergency medicine through the teaching of others and the improvement of pedagogy.

Prior to joining U-M, Dr. Santen was on faculty at Emory University and at Vanderbilt University. She earned her M.D. from the George Washington University School of Medicine, her Ph.D. from the Vanderbilt Peabody School of Education and completed a residency in emergency medicine at the George Washington/Georgetown hospitals.

A special thank you to School of Medicine academic leaders Susan Digiovanni, M.D., Betsy Ripley, M.D., and Paul Mazmanian, Ph.D., for their good work in recruiting Dr. Santen onto our team.

Please join me in welcoming Dr. Santen to our medical school!

Warm regards,

Peter F. Buckley, M.D.
Dean, VCU School of Medicine
Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, VCU Health System