Pathologist selected as associate medical dean (1/16/98)
C. Nanette Clare, MD, has been named associate dean for academic affairs in the Medical School of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.
Dr. James Young, dean of the Medical School, states, "I know of no better person than Dr. Nan Clare to meet the challenges of medical student education in the context of a rapidly changing health care environment. She brings to her tasks a deep commitment to students; exceptional academic skills; the respect and recognition of her colleagues; a profound understanding of the roles, challenges, and needs of faculty; and an abounding enthusiasm for implementing and leading our curriculum change."
"Students and student performance are very important to me," says Dr. Clare. "Teaching medical students to be good physicians is my personal priority.
"I was Dr. Pestana's student," Dr. Clare says, referring to Dr. Carlos Pestana, her predecessor in the associate dean's position who stepped down following a 23-year tenure as associate dean. "He is extremely well respected. It is an honor to be appointed to follow in his footsteps. I'm very humbled, but I'll do my best."
Dr. Clare, a 1975 Health Science Center Medical School graduate, completed an internship in pathology in 1976 and a residency in pathology in 1979, both at University Hospital (then called Bexar County Hospital). She has been a staff pathologist of the South Texas Veterans Health Care System since 1980; is currently professor in the department of pathology and is director of the MS II pathology course; is previous co-director and now director of the pathology department's Bone Marrow Cytogentics Laboratory; and was director of the Health Science Center's pathology residency training program from 1986 to 1991. She is currently chair of the pathology test development committee for the United States Medical Licensing Exam (USMLE) and is a member of the USMLE Step 1 committee. In addition, Dr. Clare has been named outstanding professor by 13 graduating medical school classes and received the Presidential Teaching Award in 1985 and 1996.
As associate dean, Dr. Clare says her primary goal will be to put the new direction of the curriculum in place. "Most of the work on the curriculum has been done by a task force," Dr. Clare says, "They have put together an excellent plan."
She says the main changes are going to be implemented for second year medical students, although some changes will take place during the freshman year. "The plan is to have an integrated curriculum, instead of independent courses with little correlation," Dr. Clare says. "For example, we'll have a cardiovascular module where pediatrics will present information about a cyanotic newborn, which means he probably has congenital heart disease, and pathology will teach the pathologic basis of congenital heart diseases and have actual specimens that students can examine. Then surgery will explain correction techniques for congenital heart disease and pharmacology will discuss medications.
"This will be a much better teaching method and students will be able to understand the information they receive, not just memorize it so they can pass a test," the new associate dean says. The curriculum has always been evolving here at the Health Science Center -- there have been continual changes -- but the time is now right for a major change for the faculty, the departments and the course directors."
Dr. Clare explains that the changes in medicine are nationwide, not just in Texas. Many medical schools have already integrated their curricula, and others are talking about it.
"Certainly there is a push all over the country for primary care specialties," she says, "and medical schools must keep abreast of changes in medicine. Students have to be prepared for the things that will happen, once they get out of medical school.
"So implementing the new curriculum with the faculty and course directors is my primary goal, but maintaining the function of the office as Dr. Pestana has, throughout the years, will be my secondary goal," Dr. Clare says. "That office takes care of many student issues."
Dr. Pestana will remain in the department of surgery at the Health Science Center. "I'm fortunate in that," Dr. Clare says. "I know I'll be calling him frequently."
The new associate dean is a third generation physician and a second generation Health Science Center employee. Dr. Clare's father, Dr. Louis Manhoff, was hired in 1974 by Dr. Frank Townsend, then chair of pathology, to be chief of laboratory service at the Audie Murphy Veterans Administration Hospital (now the South Texas Veterans Health Care System.) Dr. Manhoff retired about 12 years ago. Her grandfather, Dr. Louis Manhoff, Sr., was a family practitioner in San Antonio and her uncle, Dr. Charles Manhoff, is a retired San Antonio general medicine internist.
Dr. Clare is married to Nelson Clare, head of the legal department at City Public Service. "My husband is very supportive," she says, "and I am proud of him because he has also had to expand his horizons recently. He was previously in environmental law at CPS and only became head of the department during this past year."
The Clares have two sons, Samuel Anthony and Benjamin Joseph. Sam, a second lieutenant, is a West Point graduate who will join the Rangers, an elite military corps, this month. Ben will graduate from St. Anthony High School in 1998, where he is a member of the varsity football and basketball teams. He plans to become an engineer and to attend either Georgia Tech or Texas A&M.
Contact: Jan Elkins (210) 567-2570