With the inaugural cohort of 25 first-year medical students set to matriculate this summer, excitement surrounding the UMass Chan–Lahey regional medical school campus in Burlington continues to grow. The new campus will leverage Lahey Hospital & Medical Center and UMass Chan Medical School’s strengths to create a pipeline of purpose-driven, compassionate, and diverse physician-leaders ready to meet the region’s evolving healthcare needs. A generous gift from a group of supporters directed to the campus’ educational programming has helped kick-off critical philanthropic efforts for this momentous partnership.

At UMass Chan–Lahey, students will follow the LEAD@Lahey track, an innovative program that emphasizes leadership development, early clinical experience, interprofessional education, and a focus on health systems science. Students are not just caring for the community, they are part of the community under the program’s structure. They will forge relationships with local leaders and Lahey healthcare executives working to address issues related to access, equity, and healthcare delivery. Early clinical learning, third-year clerkship rotations, and most students’ fourth-year rotations will be completed under Lahey faculty and clinical specialty clerkship site directors’ supervision.

“The partnership between UMass Chan Medical School and Lahey is an incredibly unique opportunity to leverage the ‘learning health system’,” says Lahey President Susan Moffatt-Bruce, MD, PhD. “The combination of UMass Chan’s education and academic acumen and Lahey’s clinical laboratory environment will help improve outcomes continuously.”

Lahey’s collaborative culture and multispecialty, holistic, patient-centered care model will be key elements of every student’s education and trainingmade possible in part thanks to a generous gift from Lahey supporters to establish the Lead@Lahey Education Fund in honor of Joseph C. Corkery, MD, former Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine and Chief Medical Officer for Philanthropy. As a representative for Lahey on the UMass Chan–Lahey admissions committee, Corkery stresses that UMass Chan–Lahey is different from other medical schools and will serve as a model going forward. “Our program will not only train great physicians but encourage their passion to take on some of the most pressing, complex challenges in medicine, providing the core competencies and skillset as leaders and experiential learners to do so,” says Corkery. “UMass Chan–Lahey is opening up the pathway to leadership and the breadth of opportunities available to early-career physicians through individual mentorship, hands-on training, and intensive leadership development programming.”

Looking ahead, training the community’s next generation of healthcare leaders is a critical and exciting need, and one which we are grateful that Lahey supporters have been eager to contribute to. For Lahey President’s Council Member and longtime Lahey supporter Chris Nelson, contributing to the LEAD@Lahey Education Fund was a natural fit. “Supporting the UMass Chan–Lahey regional medical school campus is an investment in the future and chance to help shape the future of care, continuing Lahey’s history of providing a positive patient experience and ensuring that open-minded, patient-driven model of care is part of students’ education,” says Nelson.

Philanthropic support is vital to ensure that UMass Chan–Lahey graduates are successful in today’s complex healthcare field. “When I walk into Lahey, even if I haven’t been there in a while, it always feels just like home to me,” says Nelson. “This program will allow Lahey to train the next generation and share its unique brand of care, so more people can feel this way. I am proud to do my part in helping pay it forward and to be a part of this effort.”

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