Core Leadership Competencies


Pediatric Departments/Divisions which meet the demands of their academic mission while advancing continuing medical education and successfully training the next generation of academic physician leaders share the following attributes.

Attributes  |  Assessment Questions  |  FAQ  |  Pediatric Leadership Insights  |  Additional Resources


  • Protected time and salary support for faculty contributions to educational mission
  • Faculty rewards structure that encourages innovation and continuous improvement for all educational programs
  • Established efficacy measures and metrics of success for education initiatives and for program graduates
  • Established faculty and trainee development programs devoted to education
  • Diversity in trainees and educational leaders
  • Succession plan for educational leaders

Assessment Questions

  • Do you have a mission statement (include goals/importance) for your educational programs (including CME)?
  • How have you selected the educational leadership for your program(s)?
  • Do your faculty have “protected time”/effort support for their leadership of, and/or participation in educational programs?
  • Are there faculty development programs at your institution that are focused on faculty educators?
  • Are there clear expectations, track descriptions, performance measures, and promotion criteria for faculty clinician-educators?
  • What innovations have you initiated or supported in your educational programs?
  • How do you monitor the quality, the success of your education programs?
  • What initiatives do you utilize to improve retention of faculty educators? Of the best trainees as faculty?
  • Are your training program(s) highly rated by trainees?
  • Are you satisfied with the quality/diversity of training program applicants? If not, what measures can be taken to improve?



Pediatric Leadership Insight


Is a division chief role the likely next step for fellowship program directors?

Answer: Highly variable, depending primarily on the career aspirations of that program director, whether they are considering an internal vs. external chief position and on their strengths and weaknesses as a program director, especially related to the financial oversight of education programs.

What qualities do you look for in selecting new leaders for your educational programs?

Answer: With both external & internal candidates, look for evidence of leadership experience/skills (no matter the venue), commitment to medical education, contributions to educational scholarship and most important—desire to be a program director!

Several of my division chiefs also serve as their division’s fellowship program director. Do you recommend that?

Answer: Depends how successful these individuals are at both roles and how satisfied they are, which likely depends on the size (and growth?) of the division & training program.

Are there any organizations that residency and fellowship training program directors should be encouraged, supported to join, participate in?

Answer: Recommend both APPD (for residency program directors) and CoPS (for fellowship program directors)—good for career development and for continuous program improvements.

My medical school administration does not have a clinician-educator faculty track nor does it support protected time for faculty educators. While I continue to advocate for that, are there other ways I could provide support?

Answer: Consider supporting faculty educators’ application to institutional or national educator programs/conferences. Could also initiate awards that recognize faculty excellence as mentors or by their educational scholarship.

Additional Resources

  1. Uijtdehaage S Academies in health professions education: A scoping review. Academic Medicine 96: 1476-1483, 2021.
  2. Boucher D Early career development and graduate medical education leadership pathways. J Grad Med Ed 12(5): 644-46, 2020.
  3. Rees E, Guckian J & Fleming S. Fostering excellence in medical education career pathways. Ed Primary Care 32:2, 66-69, 2020.
  4. Mink R Council of Pediatric Subspecialties (CoPS): The first five years. Pediatr 130(2):335-341, 2012.
  5. Yager J What sustains residency program directors: Social and interpersonal factors that foster recruitment and support retention. Acad Medicine, 2022 (epub ahead of print) DOI: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000004887

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