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Drivers of Change

It is important to the future that we not just respond to changes of practice, but that we drive them. Interprofessional education is key because the long-term success of the University depends on friction-free collaboration and a wider understanding of the work of others. We need to climb out of the narrow chutes of our fields of study and develop a shared language. This will also be important in serving our community. If we learn true interdependence, we can make better research and treatment decisions for our patients.

Last February we broke ground on a tangible vision of our future, the Health Science Education Center (HSEC). The center will allow the concept of “adjacent possible” to flourish as concepts transfer from one field to another. It is a space for creativity and growth, a hub for developing interprofessional relationships, and a place where all components of knowledge are seen as an interrelated whole. All of these factors will help transcend the boundaries of academic silos. By removing the artificial boundaries of professions as imposed by history, students and faculty will be challenged to own and to think about concepts across health in new and imaginative ways.

By preparing ourselves and our students for the future, we can have a significant impact on our state, our communities, and our personal and professional growth, all of which are closely aligned with our responsibility as a land grant University. We can develop new collective values, a shared recognition of the importance of diversity, new strengths in problem-solving, and a system that rewards courage above conformity.

As part of this, the new HSEC will challenge many of us to develop teaching skills that will truly fit the space and provide the best learning experience for our students. In partnership with the Center for Educational Innovation, we have created and planned a wide variety of resources to help us learn more about shaping our curriculum and teaching for the future:

Online: Visit the Active Learning Classroom website: z.umn.edu/ahcactiveand find excellent resources about teaching in active learning classrooms and active learning at this site.

Class: “Space Matters: Supporting Active Learning” Learn from expert Adam Finkelstein about teaching in active learning classrooms on September 27, 10:00-11:30 a.m. in the Mayo Auditorium. Please read about him and register for the event here.

Observation: See an experienced instructor effectively use an active-learning space as they teach a class. Sign up here.

Shared experience: Attend one hour workshops offered throughout the 2018–19 academic year to address how to successfully teach in active learning classrooms. These workshops will be face-to-face and online.

Individual support: Schedule a one-to-one consultation with an education specialist from the Center for Educational Innovation to provide you with suggestions and ideas to effectively incorporate active learning into your teaching.

I strongly urge you to take advantage of one or more of these excellent resources to help you prepare for a future that will be both exciting and challenging.

It is important to the future that we not just respond to changes of practice, but that we drive them.

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