Academy Membership Application

The Academy’s annual membership application cycle begins in the spring and concludes with the induction ceremony in September.

Sara Whetstone, MD being inducted into the Academy, September 2018
Sara Whetstone, MD being inducted into the Academy, September 2018; photo by Elisabeth Fall

About The Haile T. Debas Academy of Medical Educators

The UCSF Haile T. Debas Academy of Medical Educators (AME) is an organization comprised of faculty from all health professions programs at the University of California, San Francisco. Our purpose is to support those people who advance the education mission of UCSF by fostering an organizational culture that values education and accelerates advances in teaching and learning to improve health with an emphasis on community, diversity, advocacy, service, and innovation.

The AME was founded in 2000 with the appointment of director Molly Cooke, MD, and the first members were inducted in 2001.

history of the Academy

186 Academy members represent 29 interprofessional, clinical, and basic science departments across seven core teaching sites in the Bay Area and Fresno.

Directory of Academy Members

Member Eligibility, Benefits, and Expectations

Member Eligibility

Eligible candidates must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Faculty member for three full years with at least two full years on faculty at UCSF as of July 1, 2021.
  • Outstanding educator of health professions students and/or residents, and/or a faculty developer focused on health professions educators, at UCSF. CME activities for educators about education are germane to an application to the Academy, but clinically-focused CME activities are not.
  • Demonstrates excellence in Teaching and one other domain (Educational Leadership, Learner Assessment, Curriculum Development and Instructional Design and Technology, or Mentoring and Advising).
Benefits of Membership
  • The Academy is a community of dedicated educators who work together to strengthen their own teaching and to promote excellence in teaching across UCSF.
  • Academy members are recognized as highly accomplished educators and are often consulted by colleagues and departmental leaders on questions of educational import.
  • Due to the rigor of the selection process, Academy membership is known to be a sign of outstanding performance by the committees that oversee UCSF's merit and promotion process.
  • Members are eligible to apply for the Academy endowed chairs program and for professional development, presentation travel support relating to the Academy and its mission. 
Expectations of Members

Academy members in good standing maintain the high level of work in education and teaching that qualified them for membership and contribute to advancing the Academy's mission.

Members fulfill minimum annual service expectations, e.g.:

  • Further faculty development and improve teaching through Academy co-sponsored activities
  • Contribute to an Academy action group or committee
  • Actively participate in Academy meetings and attend events such as the Celebration of New Members and UCSF Education Showcase (50% of activities over a 2-year period)
  • Document and reflect upon their participation and service

Academy members also contribute to a cyclical Membership Continuation Review process, for which they submit their current one-page Educator’s Portfolio Executive Summary in addition to their annual participation and service documentation and reflection.

Application to the Academy

2021 Application Timeline:

Dates, instructions, FAQs, and materials for the 2021 cycle will be updated in mid-May. Please check this page again or contact



May 28

Call for applications

July 26

Application deadline


Candidates notified

September 29, 3-4 pm

Celebration of New Members induction ceremony

Part 1: the Educator's Portfolio

The Educator’s Portfolio (EP) helps faculty make visible the most important contributions in education among five Roles of an educator: Teaching; Mentoring and Advising; Curriculum Development and Instructional Design and Technology; Educational Leadership, and Learner Assessment. There is a template for each Role. Applicants are encouraged to review examples of current AME members’ EPs to guide their EP development. Examples for each Role are available except for Teaching because that template has changed substantially for the 2021 cycle. See the section headed “Examples of Completed Templates” on the Educator’s Portfolio page.

What parts of the Educator’s Portfolio must be completed for application to the Academy?

  • The Executive Summary (one page) contains brief descriptions of up to five significant contributions to education. Teaching must be the first contribution listed. These contributions will be described in detail in the Teaching Role and the other Role Description selected by the applicant. 
  • ​​​Teaching and one other Role Description elaborate on contributions highlighted in the Executive Summary. The Teaching Role may be three pages maximum; the other Role is two pages maximum.

What time frame should be included for activities presented in the EP? Two years or more in any Role described in the Educator’s Portfolio is strongly encouraged. Activities described in the EP should have taken place within the past five years.

Which Detailed Role Descriptions should I complete? All applicants must apply in Teaching and in a second Role in which they can demonstrate excellence.

  • The Teaching Role has been updated for the 2021 application cycle as the Academy moves toward the holistic evaluation of teaching. Please refer to the Criteria and Indicators of Excellence for guidance on completing the Teaching Role.

Please be sure to read the Educator’s Portfolio FAQs section below for important additional information.

Educator's Portfolio FAQs

How should I determine if I can apply in Mentoring and Advising?
This Role is appropriate for applicants who can demonstrate impact in mentoring within a program, or as a Bridges Coach, beyond baseline expectations of faculty. 

Can my learner impact be from outside UCSF if I recently moved from another institution?
Demonstration of direct impact on UCSF learners is essential. Applicants must be on the UCSF faculty for at least two years before applying. Faculty who came to UCSF from other institutions within the past five years may also include a demonstration of impact at their previous institution.

Do I need to have disseminated my work beyond UCSF?
No, dissemination of work outside UCSF (e.g., through publications, presentations at conferences, etc.) is aspirational in each role. However, the strongest applicants demonstrate scope beyond their own departments.

Can I use my EP in Advance to apply to the Academy?
Yes, you may import content from your Educator Overview and Roles into the 2021 EP templates, with the exception of Teaching. The Teaching form in Advance is not compatible with the new Teaching Role template for application to the Academy. Please be sure to use the EP Teaching Role template from the Academy website.

Part 2: The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement, Statement of Planned Contributions to the Academy, and Letters of Support

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement: How have you committed yourself to understand and aid the pursuit of social justice including diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-oppression in your role as an educator? As you reflect on your past efforts, what are some specific opportunities for your own personal growth and for improving equity, inclusion, and anti-oppression in your learning environment(s)? (< 350 words). Please compose your statement in a Word document.

How will the DEI statement be evaluated by the Membership Committee?

  • Applicant describes work they’ve done and demonstrates knowledge and understanding of the terms equity, inclusion, and anti-oppression
  • Applicant is able to describe at least one concrete intervention to enhance DEI/anti-oppression in their local environment
  • Applicant identifies specific areas of learning (e.g., mentoring across differences, recruitment) and classes, tools, and resources to achieve the learning
  • Applicant describes specific opportunities and intervention(s) for improving DEI/anti-oppression in a local learning environment

Statement of Planned Contributions to the AME: Please briefly describe how you plan to contribute to the AME to help enhance its community of educators and/or how you would work through the AME to enhance the UCSF educational community at large. (< 200 words). This is also completed in a plain Word document. 

How will the AME statement be evaluated by the Membership Committee?

  • Applicant describes at least one realistic way they would contribute to the AME community or work with the AME community to support the UCSF education community at large

Letters of Support: Letters should specifically address the applicant’s ability to meet criteria for membership and the impact of their work in the educational Roles in which they are applying. 

  • Criteria for membership: applicant meets eligibility requirements, submit a complete application, and will be able to meet the member expectations. 
  • Department chair/division chief or dean’s letter (required): if the letter is written by the division chief, it should be endorsed and transmitted to the AME by the department chair.
  • Up to two additional letters may be requested. Letters by students are not recommended except to demonstrate impact in the Mentoring and Advising role.
  • Applicants should choose referees whose combined letters will address all the major contributions in their application. Applicants should consider sending their referees their EP or CV, and ensure their referees are aware of and can speak to their accomplishments in their educational Roles.
  • The Membership Committee recognizes that the Educator’s Portfolio page limitations may not allow applicants to include accomplishments and/or information about their trajectory as educators in their Role descriptions. Applicants are welcome to ask referees to include that information in their letters.

How do I obtain letters? Letters are requested by the candidate, addressed to the Academy Membership Committee, and transmitted by the author to the AME via email to

Checklist. The checklist includes the Roles in which the candidate is applying and lists the people from whom they are requesting letters of support.

Re-applicant statement. Individuals who have previously applied to the Academy are asked to address the feedback received from the Membership Committee, including how they’ve made any recommended changes, in a brief (two-paragraph) statement.

Part 3: Preparing and Submitting the Application

A strong membership application requires thoughtful advance planning and several iterations of review with the assigned coach.

Application Coaches: We offer a coaching program to support applicants through the process and maximize successful applications. Applicants are paired with Academy members from other departments to discuss and receive feedback on all aspects of the application. Our experience indicates that coached applicants submit stronger applications; we expect that applicants will request coaches. To be paired with an Application Coach, applicants should email


Administrative review of the Educator’s Portfolio (required): Applicants are asked to submit their EPs in draft mid-way through the process so they can be assessed for adherence to page limits and appropriate use of templates. We do not expect EPs to be complete at this stage, and this is not a content review. Email the Educator’s Portfolio to

Application submission: The Checklist template and application submission link are forwarded to applicants following the administrative review. Applicants upload their Checklist, Educator’s Portfolio, DEI and AME Statements, and Re-Applicant Statement (if applicable) to the application platform. Letters of support are transmitted directly to the Academy and are appended to the applicant’s application. Applications must be complete in order to be reviewed.

Letters of support grace period: Applicants will be advised of missing letters within one day of the application deadline. Referees have an additional two days to submit their letters to the AME. 

For help, contact: 1). Your coach; 2). Kathleen Land, AME Membership Lead,