University of Virginia physician Eugene C. Corbett, Jr., has been awarded one of the nation’s highest teaching honors for physicians. Corbett, the Anne L. & Bernard B. Brodie Professor of Medicine, was recently presented the Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Award for his work in teaching young physicians at UVA and developing national curriculum models for all medical students.
“Gene Corbett is a model teacher and educator who has dedicated his life to modeling behaviors to train physicians to excel in the science, art and practice of medicine,” said Steven T. DeKosky, MD, vice president and dean of the UVA School of Medicine.
A nationally recognized expert on competency-based education, Dr. Corbett has been involved with almost every major advance in UVA’s undergraduate medical education curriculum, in addition to resident training and faculty development. In his new role as assistant dean for clinical skills education, he leads the integration of two key programs-the Clinical Skills Training and Assessment Program and the Medical Simulation Center-to create the Clinical Performance Education Center (CPEC). The center will enable students and health care professionals to gain and demonstrate competency in clinical skills in simulated settings. It also will allow medical students to practice upon and receive feedback from standardized patients about clinical skills such as patient interviewing, physical examinations, and professionalism.
“At heart, I’m just a country doctor. I’m just trying to model what I consider the best behavior for our students to become outstanding physicians,” Corbett said.
Before joining the faculty at UVA, Corbett was a general practitioner in central Virginia and provided UVA students and residents an opportunity to learn in his community practice. He continued this example upon joining the faculty, and third-year medical students at UVA spend four weeks of their clerkships in community-based rural and urban outpatient practices.
“Even though we have made great advances in our medical technology, I believe we have to make sure all the doctors we teach have the skills to be complete physicians,” Corbett says.
In addition to his expertise in primary care, Dr. Corbett is also recognized for his contributions to nursing education in the realm of pathophysiology, a combination that has served him well in advancing interprofessional collaboration. He was involved early on in developing a nurse practitioner program at UVA, and today is a key participant in the School of Medicine and School of Nursing Interprofessional Education Initiative.