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April 24, 2017

Ade Olomu: Role model

April 25, 2017

Ade Olomu is a physician, professor of medicine and vice chairperson of clinical research in the Department of Medicine in the College of Human Medicine. Her research is focused on development, dissemination and translation into clinical practice and community settings, evidence-based interventions to reduce racial disparities in cardiovascular disease care and outcomes in minority and low income-populations.

As a physician and a professor, I have done a lot in my career, but I have at least one more goal: I want to move into a leadership position and serve as a role model for other women in academic medicine.

I was excited when three of my colleagues – Henry Barry, physician and senior associate dean, Francesca Dwamena, physician and chairwoman of the Department of Medicine, and Norman Beauchamp, physician and dean, – nominated me for a fellowship with the Hedwig van American Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine Program for Women. I was even more thrilled when I was notified recently that I had been accepted into the year-long program.

I knew it was something I very much wanted to do. I’m thinking that at the end of this program, I’ll be well prepared to hold a leadership position.

While nearly half the students in medical schools are women, their numbers among the top administrative positions at academic health centers have lagged. It is a deficiency the ELAM program, based at the Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, was created to address.

Women enrolled in medical schools and those already teaching and practicing medicine have to know they can achieve leadership. Women bring a different perspective to leadership. They bring new ideas.

The fellowship will require a significant commitment of time over the coming year, including several hours each week and attendance at three week-long sessions in Philadelphia. It also depends upon the support of my College of Human Medicine leaders and colleagues.

It’s really an institutional commitment. I’m grateful to my colleagues for nominating me and I really appreciate their support. I feel really honored.