Nancy Jane Shelby, Ph.D., professor and director of the Alaska WWAMI School of Medical Education, has been named to the Louis L. Kralick, M.D. Alaska WWAMI Professorship. Dr. Shelby will serve as the Kralick Professor for a term of three years.
Established in 2011 with a generous gift by longtime Anchorage neurosurgeon Dr. Louis Kralick, the professorship seeks to advance Dr. Kralick’s desire to ensure that UAA’s WWAMI program provides high-quality teaching to educate the next generation of Alaska doctors.
Dr. Shelby was selected for the Kralick professorship because of her long history as a medical researcher and educator of medical students and surgical residents. Her background has prepared her well for leading the Alaska WWAMI program to its next major growth milestone of implementing new curriculum that is currently being designed in collaboration with the University of Washington School of Medicine.
During her three-year term as Kralick Professor, Dr. Shelby will lead the Alaska WWAMI program through a curriculum reform process that will result in the equivalent of both the first and second years of medical school––the Foundations phase––being offered at UAA beginning in fall 2015. The new curriculum will include moving from a traditional lecture-based delivery to a greater level of active learning, incorporating more meaningful evidence-based case studies and early clinical training. Implementation of this new curriculum will require strategic planning to bring new faculty into the program, including clinicians and others with needed expertise.
“The next three years will be challenging and exciting,” says Dr. Shelby. “It’s a great time to be associated with the WWAMI program, with dynamic changes that will enhance the program to better prepare medical students for the future.”
She adds, “Alaska WWAMI has excellent basic and clinical science faculty, and very solid support from the medical community and university leadership. We are very well positioned to implement the new curriculum and grow the program, continuing to play a major role in meeting the physician workforce needs to Alaska.”
Dr. Shelby moved from Bozeman, Montana in July 2012 to join UAA’s faculty. In addition to her role at UAA, she serves as interim executive director of Montana State University’s (MSU) Division of Health Sciences, home to the Montana WWAMI Medical Education program. Prior to her time at MSU, Dr. Shelby was a tenured professor of surgery at the University of Utah School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Salt Lake City. Read more about Dr. Shelby in her I AM UAA profile.
WWAMI is a collaborative medical school among universities in five northwestern states: Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho and the University of Washington School of Medicine. The Alaska WWAMI School of Medical Education accepts 20 students into the program each year. Learn more about Alaska WWAMI program.