Undergradate Medical Education (Ume) Leadership Curriculum

The University of Ottawa UME Leadership Curriculum (LC) is a multifaceted, longitudinal curriculum that was launched in 2009. The LC continues to evolve based on new information in healthcare leadership and student feedback. It is based upon the five pillars of Leadership in Healthcare as described by Leaders for Life ©, a paradigm also currently utilized by the Canadian Medical Association (CMA).

The goals of the LC are:

  1. To provide all undergraduate medical students at the University of Ottawa with foundational knowledge and skills in Healthcare Leadership.
  2. To provide opportunities for enhanced leadership development for undergraduate medical students that demonstrate particular interest and/or aptitude in Healthcare Leadership.
  3. To highlight the importance of Leadership in Healthcare early in a physician’s training.

The five pillars of Leadership in Healthcare as described by Leaders for Life © include:

  1. Leads Self
  2. Engages Others
  3. Develop Coalitions
  4. Achieve Results
  5. System Transformation

All elements of the University of Ottawa UME LC can be mapped to these five pillars.  At the University of Ottawa, it is our belief that leadership knowledge and skills should be continually developed and utilized throughout a physician’s career.  Thus, the LC has purposely been aligned with the leadership framework utilized by the CMA to allow the student to have continuity in their leadership framework throughout his/her journey in medicine.

The LC consists of elements explicitly developed for the LC itself.  However, throughout the UME curriculum, there are skills taught than may also develop leadership potential (e.g. team based learning)—these are not explicitly described in the curriculum but can be mapped to the leadership pillars as necessary.

The pillar of “Leads Self” includes:

  • Self-awareness
  • Developing self
  • Managing self
  • Demonstrating character. 

The pillar of “Engaging Others” includes:

  • Building Effective Teams
  • Fostering the Development of Others
  • Communicating Effectively
  • Contributing to Healthy Organizations.

The pillar of “Developing Coalitions” includes strategies to:

  • Mobilize Knowledge
  • Navigate Socio-Political Environments
  • Purposefully Build Networks to Facilitate Change

The pillar of “Achieving Results” includes:

  • Strategically aligning vision, values and evidence
  • Implementing Decisions
  • Assessing Programs

The pillar of “System Transformation” includes:

  • Critical Thinking
  • Encouraging and Supporting Innovation
  • Championing and Orchestrating Change

The LC is a four-year longitudinal curriculum.  Its explicit elements, and their mapping to the Leaders for Life © pillars include:

Leadership Certificate Of Achievement: This is awarded at graduation to students who have successfully completed all of the elements of the LC, including the Leadership Elective.

Dr. Moineau Leadership Award: This $1000 prize is awarded at graduation to a student who best demonstrates effective leadership and growth in leadership skills in his/her time in the Undergraduate Medical Education program at the University of Ottawa.

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