PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Dr. Edward J. Wing, dean of medicine and biological sciences at Brown since 2008, will step down as dean on June 30, 2013, at the end of the current academic year.
“Dean Wing has led the Division of Biology and Medicine with confidence and vision during a remarkable period of growth and change,” said Brown President Christina Paxson. “Under his leadership, the Alpert Medical School has grown and expanded into a new home in the Jewelry District, closer to teaching hospitals, with the promise of new opportunities for community development, economic growth, and institutional collaboration.”
Wing intends to remain at Brown as a faculty member, following his interests in international health, medical education, writing and editing, and patient care. He will take a sabbatical after stepping down as dean.
The University will organize a national search for Wing’s successor under the direction of Provost Mark Schlissel, himself a physician. “This is a significant appointment in an area of great importance not just to the University, but also to our teaching hospital partners and for the quality of health care offered to the citizens of Providence and Rhode Island,” Schlissel said. “Through Ed’s vision, skill, and stewardship, Brown is well-positioned to attract another dynamic leader to continue the momentum we’ve established with the Alpert Medical School.”
Wing was appointed chair of the Department of Medicine and physician-in-chief at the University’s affiliated hospitals in 1998. He came to Brown from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, where he had been chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases. After 10 years of service as department chair, Wing was appointed dean of medicine and biological sciences in 2008, succeeding Dr. Eli Adashi.
During his years as dean, the biological sciences — particularly medical education — underwent a period of sustained growth and change:
- A reorganized Division of Biology and Medicine is able to undertake more efficient, productive planning aimed at higher levels of excellence in research and teaching for biological science, medicine, and public health.
- New affiliation agreements with Lifespan, Care New England, and other agencies are producing more strategically coordinated initiatives including shared research facilities and educational programs with increased support from hospitals for medical education.
- Sponsored research funding has increased 15 percent during a period of economic uncertainty, from $180 million in 2008 to $207 million in 2012.
- Alpert Medical School enrollment has increased from 96 to 120 for the entering class of 2016, the largest medical class ever.
- A new Global Health Initiative includes new international programs in Haiti and Ghana.
- Undergraduate enrollments in the biological sciences have increased by 15 percent, from 5,300 in 2008 to 6,100 in 2012.
- A significant investment in the Program in Public Health — with recruitment of additional faculty and the creation of four new academic departments — has positioned the program to move toward becoming a School of Public Health.
- Successful recruitment of key department chairs in medicine, pathology, neurosurgery, and neuorology is strengthening research, clinical care, and education in those fields.
- Successful fundraising in many biomedical areas and for the new medical education building, led by the earlier $100-million gift from the Warren Alpert Foundation, has supported the most profound period of change in medical education since the creation of the medical school in 1973.
“I have been privileged to serve The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University for the last 14 years, first as chair of medicine and for the last four-and-a-half years as dean,” Wing said. “The Alpert Medical School and the University have grown remarkably in all respects during that time and it has been wonderful to be part of the process. I predict even greater success for the school in future years. After a sabbatical, I will return to the faculty to pursue my deep interests in international health, writing and editing, teaching, and caring for patients.”