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Associate residency program director named; recognized by AAO

Education and teaching are central to an academic medical center’s mission and have long been a cornerstone to the ophthalmology residency program at the University of Iowa. The department of ophthalmology and visual sciences recently affirmed its commitment to education with the addition of an associate residency program director.

Pavlina Kemp, MDPavlina Kemp, MD, clinical assistant professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences, was named to the new position in August. She joined the department faculty in 2015 after completing a pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus fellowship at Boston Children’s Hospital, seeking to return to UI where she completed residency and medical school training.

Kemp currently serves as director of medical student education and shares a love of teaching among the department’s faculty. Over the past four years in this position, she has improved the standing of the medical student clerkship rotation, and more recently adapted the curriculum for virtual learning. In her new role, Kemp will assist the current program director and help further innovate resident and medical student teaching.

The transformation of residents into competent and confident ophthalmologists over the years they spend in our department has always impressed me, and I am excited to contribute to this experience,” shares Kemp.

Ophthalmic teaching in the clinic and operating room, like so many things, has changed and evolved over the last several months due to the coronavirus 2019 pandemic. Programs have needed to adjust to new norms in teaching necessary skills and recruiting medical students into the specialty.

The past year has seen our department and our residency program adapt to unprecedented changes in medicine and education. Virtual learning and simulation have taken on new importance, and resident recruitment and interviewing is very different than it has ever been,” Kemp explains.

Also shifting in the field of ophthalmology is the greater need and role for diversity in the profession. As a junior faculty member directly involved in medical student and residency education, Kemp understands that she is in a position to address the issue with ophthalmologists in training and those transitioning into practice.

We continue to strive for increased diversity in the field of ophthalmology to reflect the patients we serve, and we hope to continue to foster the Iowa culture of excellence and teamwork among our ophthalmology team.”

The American Academy of Ophthalmology recognized Kemp’s dedication to education with the awarding of a 2020 AAO Secretariat Award, an annual award recognizing special contributions to the Academy and ophthalmology. Her committee involvement with editing and updating of educational materials for the AAO earned her the nomination and acknowledgment.

I am so honored to receive the AAO Secretariat Award, especially to be in the company of such influential leaders in our field who have received the award previously. I am glad to be able to contribute to the education of future primary care providers and eye care specialists,” reflects Kemp.

More information about the residency program: http://bit.ly/2u2oYHy

Dr. Pavlina Kemp (left) trains residents on different surgical tools and techniques through a variety of simulations and other teaching methods.

Thursday, October 8, 2020