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Leadership and Collaboration in a New Era: A Personal Message from the Dean

Enjoying a unique location in the nation’s capital, building on its remarkable history of generating outstanding physicians and health professionals, and with a profound commitment to service and to the expansion of biomedical and clinical knowledge, the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences is embarking on a historic campaign that will position the school among the world’s great academic medical centers.

I have had the privilege of experiencing SMHS as a medical student, a resident in the psychiatry program, a member of the faculty, and, as of October 2013, as vice president for health affairs and dean.  It was SMHS’s very special and well-recognized culture that fosters personal and professional development that enabled me to become a leading national voice on the psychological aspects of HIV/AIDS during the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the 1980s and 90s. SMHS has a history of adopting a posture of leadership during challenges, and we have the opportunity to become an international leader among academic medical institutions as we enter our third century.

Our faculty members speak of goals no less than curing HIV/AIDS. They are meeting the task of laying the foundation for a medical field totally altered by genomics. They are leveraging incredible new technology to transform the way we think of surgery. They are revising medical curricula to prepare students and residents for a new world of medical and health care delivery. The members of SMHS’s faculty are dedicated to increasing the sum of medical knowledge globally, improving the level of care we give our patients, and mentoring the next generation of physicians and health care providers.

The purpose of our campaign is to ensure that we have the resources to match our ambition. Great institutions have great philanthropy, and our goals will only be achieved with the support of the entire extended community of SMHS. Our professorships and scholarships, our research and clinical care, our facilities and centers are made possible by the generosity of philanthropists and by gifts of all sizes. This will be true in the years to come more than ever.

We look to improve our main campus building, and in addition, we hold among our fondest hopes a plan to construct a new building for SMHS within the decade. This will further enhance our ability to teach, heal, discover and serve in a new era of medicine.

This campaign is about making great things possible. We invite you to be part of our vision. Now is the time to make an impact with a generous gift.

Thank you,

Jeffrey S. Akman, M.D. '81. RESD '85
Walter A. Bloedorn Professor of Administrative Medicine
Vice President for Health Affairs and Dean, School of Medicine and Health Sciences