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Benchmarks of Value

March 18, 2015

Hello Everyone:

Over the past couple of years, I’ve used this message several times to talk about the University’s Strategic Planning process, and the broad and deep level of engagement we have had across our University in shaping a roadmap for our progress over the next several years. Many of you will remember that the new Strategic Plan, “Transforming the Face of Health: Advancing Western University of Health Sciences,” was approved by our Board of Trustees last spring, and a Strategic Planning Implementation Steering Committee was assembled to track and review progress on approved Plan initiatives, and take input on new ones.

As part of the tracking process, starting today, I will use the Message from the President to update all of you on Plan initiatives, as developments warrant. This communication is one part of the University’s effort to make the Strategic Planning process as transparent as possible, but more important, to keep all of you engaged in the initiatives as they move forward.

One of these innovative ideas got its start in the IT department, where so many of our most creative minds tackle the challenges posed by rapidly changing technology. Over the past 10 years, IT’s programming team has been refining a web-based software application designed to facilitate the scheduling of student rotations or clerkship. This effort culminated in the creation of EduRotations – rotation management software designed for efficiency, and with the user experience in mind. Using the latest best-practices in software and user experience design, EduRotations stands as a unique piece of software engineering. Indeed, an independent study comparing existing rotation applications on the market concluded that EduRotations was more feature-rich, flexible, and user-friendly than equivalent commercial applications.

The distinctive features of EduRotations have led the University of Colorado’s Physician Assistant program to license the software from WesternU to manage PA student rotations. It has become an instrumental tool in enhancing students’ rotation experience by putting the rotation information they need at their fingertips. Using a mobile device, rotation schedules can be easily accessed through the application.

EduRotations embodies the creative spirit at WesternU, an institution driven by strategic vision and initiative. It demonstrates the University’s commitment to leveraging technology to be of best service to our own students, while at the same time extending that leverage into the education software marketplace, and building a WesternU brand. EduRotations is being marketed to additional PA programs, along with other programs at the University of Colorado. It demonstrates how one objective of the Strategic Plan – developing sources of nontuition revenue in order to lighten the burden of operational costs on tuition dollars – is already being met.

As always, I welcome your feedback on this topic and any others as we discuss WesternU’s Benchmarks of Value, and our plans. Please e-mail me with your thoughts at ppumerantz@westernu.edu, and feel free to share this message with your family and friends.

My best to you all,