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Michael Hirsh appointed assistant vice provost for wellness and health promotion

UMass Medical School Communications

July 29, 2019
Michael P. Hirsh, MD

Michael P. Hirsh, MD, professor of surgery, chief of the Division of Pediatric Surgery and surgeon-in-chief for the UMass Memorial Children’s Medical Center, has been appointed to a newly created position of assistant vice provost for wellness and health promotion, according to Terence R. Flotte, MD, the Celia and Isaac Haidak Professor of Medical Education, executive deputy chancellor, provost and dean of the School of Medicine, and Sonia Chimienti, MD, vice provost of student affairs and enrollment management. As assistant vice provost, Dr. Hirsh will report to Dr. Chimienti and work closely across the academic enterprise as a member of the Office of Student Life, as of Oct. 1.

“We and our learners will benefit greatly from Dr. Hirsh’s expertise, compassion and track record of leadership in many realms, including as an outstanding clinician, advocate, mentor, community partner, role model and colleague,” said Dr. Flotte and Chimienti, in announcing the new role. “The health and well-being of our students is a high priority, and UMMS has long worked to ensure that our learners benefit from a supportive, respectful and inclusive learning environment, with access to a wide variety of health and support services. As you know, caregiver burnout and resilience are critical issues being addressed by many health systems and we endeavor to equip our graduates in all three schools with the tools they will need to lead successful, fulfilling careers.”

Dr. Hirsh will continue to have a role in the Division of Pediatric Surgery, which he has led for the past 19 years, and he will maintain his positions in pediatric trauma and critical care, and as co-director of the Injury Free Coalition for Kids. Soon, Demetrius Litwin, MD, chair of the Department of Surgery, will share his choice for the next chief of the Division of Pediatric Surgery.

The scope of the assistant vice provost’s role includes serving as chair of a newly created Committee on Student Well-Being. This committee will include student and faculty representation from each school, along with representatives from the student body and the Office of Student Life. Its mission will be to work collaboratively to create and support extracurricular programs and events that foster a sense of community and learner well-being at UMMS. The assistant vice provost will lead planning of an annual “wellness week” each fall and will serve as a liaison to the clinical system’s new wellness officer and graduate medical education wellness initiatives.

Hirsh said he is “humbled and grateful for the opportunity to lead a major effort to keep our wonderful learners in all three schools moving forward feeling supported, interconnected and fulfilled.”