University of Pittsburgh


"From Leaders' Worst to Panther's Pitt-falls: Unburdening Student Souls with Epic Tales of Faculty Failure"

Date: Friday, October 20, 2017
Time: 12 pm - 1 pm
Location: Scaife Hall Lecture Room 3

Presented by: James K Richardson, MD


Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

University of Michigan Medical School




About This Session

Dr. Richardson is active in patient care, education, and research.With regard to teaching, Dr. Richardson received the departmental teaching award, the Silver and Gold Crutch, sufficient number of times that he was disqualified a decade ago from receiving them further. He is increasingly active teaching at the medical student level, in their pre-clinical and clinical years. Dr. Richardson holds the distinction of being the only faculty member at the University of Michigan to provide two lectures annually to the entire M3 class during their weekly seminars on Friday afternoon. Additionally, he was one of three finalists for the Kaiser-Permanente Pre-Clinical Teaching Award in 2016 and has again been named one of the three finalists this year, 2017. He has received 10 national awards related to his research endeavors, and was voted, into the University of Michigan’s Leagues of Educational and Research Excellence.

Dr. Richardson’s latest teaching endeavor is outside of his usual academic offerings and serves to address medical student well-being. Highly publicized recent research findings suggest that approximately one in four medical students is depressed. To assist in addressing medical student stress, Dr. Richardson has for years discussed his absolute failure during his Surgical Rotation. The students so enjoyed this story that he expanded the concept by including four known faculty who each, in succession, described their own stories of failure in their early clinical years to the entire University of Michigan third year class. The lecture entitled “Leaders and Worst” a take off on the University of Michigan slogan, was by turns humorous and poignant as the faculty made themselves vulnerable, and the students’ comments extraordinarily appreciative:

“Leaders and Worst was amazing. I really felt connected with the faculty members who shared their stories.”

“The hardest part of the year has been feeling a bit alone in your feeling of incompetence, and feeling like you're just trying to hide it, so it was really, really cool to hear from faculty about how that is a normal part of development...”





Continuing Medical Education


The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Other health care professionals are awarded 0.10 continuing education units (CEUs) which are equal to 1.0 contact hours.

Suggest a Topic

We welcome topic or speaker suggestions for future sessions of Medical Education Grand Rounds.

Please e-mail JoAnn Reed, Executive Assistant to the Vice Dean, with a description of why the suggested person or topic is appropriate or timely. If suggesting a person, please include a CV, a short bio, and a link to his/her Web site.