Curriculum Ambassador Program

History and Overview

Launched in the summer of 2001, the Curriculum Ambassador program is one of the great hallmarks of curricular change and enhancement at UCSF, and an exciting example of the way in which medical students can play an integral role in shaping the evolution of School of Medicine curriculum. Over the past 20 years, over 300 students have participated in this funded summer fellowship program, partnering with faculty mentors to identify high-priority areas for improvement within the curriculum, and designing and implementing curricular innovations. In total, the Curriculum Ambassadors have developed over 250 curriculum projects, which have shaped the educational experience of UCSF medical students over the past two decades. Students selected for this program will partner with educational leaders to learn core skills in curriculum development, identify and explore top-priority areas for curriculum improvement and innovation, and design and implement high-impact curriculum projects.

As specific project descriptions and mentors are finalized, they will be hosted on this website.

Summer 2021 Information:
Students selected for the Summer 2021 Curriculum Ambassador Program will be partnered with faculty mentors to work on specific projects related to the following three Top Curriculum Priority areas:

1.    Anti-Oppression Curriculum Mapping: Students will partner with faculty mentors to perform “curriculum mapping” -- a systematic, detailed review of when/where/how the SOM curriculum currently covers a specific anti-oppression topic (i.e. Anti-Black racism), in order to identify specific opportunities to reorganize, enhance, integrate, and expand this topic across the scope of the Bridges Curriculum.

The following 2 Curriculum Priority areas relate to The UCSF 49, a group of core syndromes and disorders which will serve as a curriculum framework to anchor and organize the educational content of the Bridges Curriculum. The syndromes and disorders that comprise The UCSF 49 are clustered into related clinical conditions. Organized in this way, The UCSF 49 will help students build robust neural networks for clinical decision making, which requires comparing and contrasting similar clinical presentations.

2.    UCSF 49 Patient Case Development: Students will work with faculty mentors to write a detailed and robust patient case for one of The UCSF 49 syndromes (ex: a patient presenting with headache, or with chest pain, or with altered mental status). Once fully developed, these “UCSF 49 Patient Cases” will be used across multiple different lectures, small group sessions, and even courses, thus providing continuity as students build, revisit, and refine their understanding of these core clinical syndromes over the course of medical school.

3.    UCSF 49 Curriculum Mapping: Students will partner with faculty mentors to perform “curriculum mapping” – a systematic, detailed review of when/where/how the SOM curriculum currently covers one of The UCSF 49 clinical syndromes, in order to identify specific opportunities to reorganize, enhance, integrate, and expand this topic across the scope of the Bridges Curriculum.

Important dates and information for 2022

  • Applications: Will be updated in Winter 2022
  • Program runs for 8 weeks starting June 13th and ending on Friday, August 5th
  • You can choose to take vacation time and work 7 weeks
  • Classes begin Monday, August 8th
  • Full time stipend is $4,500.
  • We have capacity for a maximum of 8 students for this Summer (may be updated)

Workshops and Weekly sessions

The first week of the Summer, all students will engage in a 3 day Curriculum Development Workshop which will include interactive sessions:

  • Framework for approach to Curriculum Development utilizing the foundational text, “Curriculum Development for Medical Education” by Thomas, Kern, et al (3rd edition).
  • Making the Most of a Mentoring Relationship
  • Literature Review for Medical Education
  • Disseminating your Medical Education projects

We will also hold a weekly, 3 hour Works in Progress session where students will gather to present their projects and get feedback from their peers and program faculty.

Program Leadership

John Davis, MD, PhD
Associate Dean for Curriculum, School of Medicine
Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine
Division of Infectious Diseases

Patricia O'Sullivan, EdD
Professor in the Department of Medicine
Director of Research and Development in Medical Education in the Center for Faculty Educators

Jenny Mandal, MD
Curriculum Ambassador Program Director
Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine
Division of Rheumatology

Contact:
David Rachleff, Program Coordinator