(UPDATE May 25, 2022) — The University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine Fresno regional campus is the 30th institution of higher education to join the Central Valley Higher Education Consortium.
UCSF Fresno’s application for membership was formally accepted by the CVHEC Board of Directors at its quarterly meeting May 5 at the DoubleTree Hotel in Fresno as part of the annual CVHEC Higher Education Policy and Legislative Summit.
Michael W. Peterson, MD/MACP, associate dean for Undergraduate Medical Education and Research at the UCSF Fresno Campus, was seated on the consortium board which is made up of the presidents and chancellors of 30 colleges and universities in the nine-county region from San Joaquin to Kern counties.
Dr. Benjamín Durán, CVHEC executive director, said the consortium is delighted to welcome Dr. Peterson onto the board representing UCSF Fresno as one of two medical schools holding membership.
“The success of the consortium the past two decades and its growth to 30 members demonstrate the capable leadership of the valley’s college and university chief executives working together as one voice for the benefit of all our residents seeking a higher education,” Duran said. “UCSF Fresno will strengthen that voice and service to our region.”
The non-profit CVHEC, which was incorporated in November 2002 with 23 member institutions under founding president, Dr. John Welty, now president-emeritus of Fresno State, observed its 20th anniversary at the summit to kick off a year-long observance of the milestone.
The consortium provides a unified voice to address the Central Valley’s higher education needs relevant to CVHEC’s mission: increase access, persistence and certificate and degree completions for residents of the region.
UCSF Fresno expressed their support of this concept in its letter of application co-signed by Dr. Peterson and Lori Weichenthal, MD, FACEP who is UCSF Fresno associate dean of Graduate Medical Education and Clinical Affairs: “We hope to be included in the Central Valley Higher Education Consortium so that we may join you in speaking with one voice on increasing educational attainment and advocating for policy issues that affect our region.”
Established in 1975, UCSF Fresno is focused on improving health in California’s San Joaquin Valley and central California through excellence in teaching and patient care, innovative clinical research and community partnerships. Each year, UCSF Fresno trains more than 300 physicians and 300 rotating medical students, including those in the new UCSF San Joaquin Valley Program in Medical Education (SJV PRIME).
“Roughly 50% of the physicians trained at UCSF Fresno stay in the Valley to provide UCSF care,” Peterson said.
“As a regional campus of the consistently top-ranked UCSF School of Medicine, we look forward to partnering with consortium member institutions to increase awareness, preparedness and matriculation of students from the Valley into medical school and other health professional schools with the goal of seeing them graduate and ultimately, serve our region.”
Presently, UCSF Fresno partners with its sister campus UC Merced, also a consortium member, in the SJV PRIME and is gearing up for SJV PRIME+, a BS-to-MD program.
In addition, the medical school partners with CVHEC-member Fresno State on various programs, including research and pathway programs aimed at providing undergraduate students with experiences that foster interest and preparedness for careers in medicine.
UCSF Fresno also helps prepare middle, high school and college students for careers in health and medicine through a variety of pathway programs.
Peterson said pathways in the Valley from high schools, to community colleges, to four-year universities, to medical school, and through residency are desperately needed to help prepare, recruit, train, and retain future health care professionals from underrepresented racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds within the region.
“Diversity, equity and inclusion are at the very heart of UCSF,” Peterson wrote. “Equitable and inclusive environments are essential to effective learning, high-quality patient care and cutting-edge research.”
CVHEC BOARD ACTION – MAY 5, 2022
(May 5, 2022) — The University of California San Francisco – Fresno Campus became the 30th institution of higher education to join the Central Valley Higher Education Consortium today.
UCSF’s application for membership was formally accepted by the CVHEC Board of Directors at its quarterly meeting this afternoon at the DoubleTree Hotel in Fresno, the first in-person meeting of the board since the pandemic shutdown two years ago.
Michael W. Peterson, MD/MACP, associate dean for Undergraduate Medical Education and Research at the UCSF-Fresno Campus, was seated on the board which is made up of the presidents and chancellors of now 30 colleges and universities in the nine-county region from San Joaquin to Kern counties.
Today’s board meeting precedes resumption of the annual CVHEC Higher Education Policy and Legislative Summit that will be held tomorrow (May 6) also at the DoubleTree from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. with the theme “Post Pandemic World: Recovering with Equity and Inclusion in the Central Valley.”
– See the CVHEC Summit Event Website for the agenda and breakdown of panels.
– Original summit press release: CVHEC Founder Welty Returns for Summit and 20th Anniversary
– For more summit details: CVHEC April e-Newsletter.
MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Uribes 559.348.3278 (firstname.lastname@example.org)