Category Alumni
Author Karen Blum

MEHP alumni Michael Banks, MD (MEHP ’19); Rachel Salas, MD (MEHP ’18); and Mike Ryan, MD (MEHP ’15), were honored at Johns Hopkins University’s 2023 Commencement. Banks received the Distinguished Alumnus Award, Salus received the Distinguished Alumna Award, and Ryan received the Outstanding Recent Graduate Award. MEHP alumni received three of the four university alumni awards for the School of Education.

Banks, an assistant professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, is vice chair of diversity, equity, and inclusion for his department and the assistant residency director and director of resident education in critical care. He has created several programs, including Pathways to Medicine Discovery Lab, a program designed to encourage underrepresented minorities, women, LGBTQ+ people, and people with disabilities to pursue academic medicine.

Banks is also committed to interprofessional education (IPE) and interprofessional collaboration in the burn intensive care unit. He completed a capstone project to promote IPE for post-licensure trainees and has created a tool to assess attitudes of learners toward IPE and collaboration. During the 2022-2023 academic year, he was selected to be an IPE faculty exemplar for the School of Medicine to serve as a role model for over 200 medical, nursing, and pharmacy students.

According to a nomination letter, Banks “has shown initiative, creativity, and determination in the many improvements he has brought to our training of learners and his peers.”

Salas, a professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins Medicine with a joint appointment in the School of Nursing, has been recognized as a distinguished teacher locally and nationally. In 2020, she received the Excellence in Teaching Award from the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association; she also has been recognized by the Johns Hopkins Institute for Excellence in Education, receiving its teaching award in 2018 and its educational scholarship award in 2021. She is an inductee of the Johns Hopkins Distinguished Teaching Society. Additionally, Salas received the 2015 Academy of Neurology Clerkship Director Innovation and 2018 Clerkship Director Teaching awards.

She also is the founder and co-director of the Johns Hopkins Osler Apprenticeship Program (in neurology), a medical education research program for senior medical students, and the Johns Hopkins PreDoc Program, a pipeline premedical college program. Salas is a certified professional life coach and certified strengths coach and uses a strength-based approach and coaching to connect to, support, and develop those involved with her educational mission and clinical practice.

Salas is a 2019-2021 Josiah Macy Scholar, a 2019-2020 American Medical Association (AMA) Health Systems Science Scholar, and a 2021 Alpha Omega Alpha Leadership Fellow. She has been invited to speak on her medical education career nationally.

“Dr. Salas has become an education exemplar and has been remarkably industrious in her career, contributing significantly to the training of health professions learners and faculty,” her nomination letter reads. “To call [her] a dynamo would be an understatement.”

Ryan, a tenured professor of pediatrics; associate dean for assessment, evaluation, research and scholarly innovation; and inaugural director of the Academy for Excellence in Education at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, is transforming how doctors are trained by coupling the health profession with formal principles of adult education.

Throughout a 13-year career in his prior position at the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Medicine, Ryan served in a variety of educational leadership positions including clerkship director, associate program director, vice chair of education, and assistant dean for clinical medical education. Translating what he learned at Johns Hopkins, he led major curriculum reforms at VCU’s School of Medicine and beyond.

He was a steering committee member for the Association of American Medical Colleges’ (AAMC) Core Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs) pilot for its duration, served as chair of the competency-based medical education (CBME) workgroup for the AMA’s Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium, and is a member of the International CBME collaborative. The purpose of his work involves progress in the realization of CBME across the continuum of training. The results of this endeavor have identified ongoing challenges associated with CBME and early lessons in terms of validity and reliability of assessment. Future work includes building upon early lessons through future collaboration with leaders across the country and major organizational stakeholders.

Ryan is a reviewer for nine journals and volunteers for the AAMC, the American Pediatric Association (APA), and the Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics (COMSEP). He also serves as an adjunct faculty member for the MEHP program, where he teaches educational scholarship and is faculty for the APA/Pediatric Hospital Medicine Advancing Pediatric Educator eXcellence, or APEX, program.

Ryan received the APA junior faculty teaching award in 2016. He has published more than 60 peer‐reviewed publications on medical education topics including CBME, EPAs, and faculty/learner development. He has received educational grant funding from the AMA, COMSEP, and Southern Group on Educational Affairs.

According to his nomination letter, Ryan “has achieved an incredible amount in terms of mentoring, volunteerism, and service; he is a role model for others in the importance of giving back and paying forward to the next generation.”

“We’re so proud of what they’ve accomplished,” says MEHP Program Director Toni Ungaretti, PhD, of all the MEHP alumni award winners. “Their success reflects positively on the MEHP degree and adds to its value. They are truly meeting our mission, which is to transform health professions education globally.”

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