The School of Medicine has recently been reorganised – adopting a new structure to establish clearer leadership and strengthen links with academic departments and the NHS.
Mr Martin Lupton (previously one of the Deputy Directors of Education) has been appointed as Head of Undergraduate School of Medicine. Martin took some time to speak to us about his new role, what the reorganisation means for medical students and how he believes the university education experience will evolve in the coming years.
Q: Congratulations on your appointment as the Head of Undergraduate School of Medicine. Can you describe this new role, as well as your main aims and objectives?
Thank you. I think the best way to describe this new role is as a facilitator and communicator. As the Chair of the School Board, my primary responsibilities are to facilitate the new leadership team in their work to improve the quality of our educational offering and to ensure that at every level the School listens to and is responsive to its students and staff (both those in our academic departments and in NHS settings).
Q: The School of Medicine has recently been reorganised with a new structure. How will these changes provide benefits to the educational offering and student experience?
Imperial College School of Medicine is a great and very large organisation, requiring collaboration across North West London. To ensure that the School can build on its success at a time of enormous change both in the University sector and the NHS, we have developed a new structure. The new structure will allow us to concentrate on the twin challenges of strategy and delivery.
Q: Which aspects of the role are you most looking forward to, and what do you envisage your greatest challenges to be?
The aspect of the role I most look forward to is also the greatest challenge. The changes in the NHS are going to require significant parallel changes in our curriculum. This is undoubtedly going to be difficult to achieve, but provides us with amazing opportunities to refresh and improve the content of our course.
Q: With the rise of online learning and social media, how do you think the higher education experience will change at Imperial over the coming years?
Imperial College Medical School is in a state of permanent evolution. We have already introduced iPads to the senior clinical years and have been developing high quality learning materials to populate an information spine that runs in parallel with our curriculum map. I think that in time more of the factual content of our course will be delivered through on line learning, which will be fantastic as it will allow us to use our human resource to concentrate on the ancient and unchanging need for apprenticeship and interaction in clinical medicine. The new and the old will work with increasing synergy.
Q: What do you see as the greatest benefits and opportunities for medical students studying at Imperial?
Where to begin? The two outstanding opportunities for our students are science and medical excellence. Imperial is a world class scientific institution and our students have a unique opportunity to be exposed to medical science in its evolution, from bench to bedside. Furthermore the Academic Health Partnership gathers together a stable of some of the most famous hospitals in the world, which care for probably the most diverse population in the world, in arguably the greatest city in the world and our students study in this environment! Why would you want to go anywhere else?