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New York Medical College Creates Intergenerational Community with New Benjamin Rush Institute Chapter

The NYMC chapter will serve as a model for other medical schools to evolve extra-curricular activities in a time of educational disruption.

Date: August 26, 2020
Benjamin Rush, M.D. (1745–1813) namesake of the Benjamin Rush Institute
Benjamin Rush, M.D. (1745–1813) namesake of the Benjamin Rush Institute
Media Contact:

Jennifer Riekert, M.B.A.
Vice President of Communications
New York Medical College
(914) 594-4552
jennifer_riekert@nymc.edu

Valhalla, New York – New York Medical College (NYMC) has created an intergenerational chapter of the Benjamin Rush Institute (BRI). This chapter, the first of its kind in any medical school, will provide opportunity for aspiring and experienced medical professionals of all different ages and backgrounds to connect in formal and informal settings to discuss the ethics of the patient-physician relationship as well as the political-economic implications of different health care provision models for the United States. The chapter, open to alumni, faculty, and students, will offer multiple online public sessions per term, with a thought leader leading discussion around a keynote idea. The chapter will also serve as a platform for alumni and current medical students to develop mentor-mentee relationships.

The innovative chapter transforms the traditional model of student-only clubs. Through the type of interaction fostered by the organization, ranging from online meetings to one-on-one remote mentoring conversations, students will learn from each other and experienced physicians looking to positively influence the next generation of physicians, while giving back to their alma mater. By facilitating engagement of members at all levels of medical experience, students will gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a professional in today’s complex healthcare environment.

The NYMC chapter will serve as a model for other medical schools to evolve extra-curricular activities in a time of educational disruption.

Peter Bentivegna, M.D. ’85, will be overseeing the alumni engagement of the chapter. “I am excited to be part of this most worthy initiative. Benjamin Rush M.D., a founding father, signer of the Declaration of Independence, prioritized the patient above all else,” said Dr. Bentivegna. “The unbreakable bond between the physician and patient must survive the stress of disease, natural disasters, war and politics. This new model of the Benjamin Rush Institute will serve to continually better the field and build up a great generation of new medical professionals.”

Ira J. Bedzow, Ph.D., director of the Biomedical Ethics and Humanities Program and faculty advisor for the new chapter, adds, “This is an exciting opportunity for New York Medical College to change the way students, faculty, and alumni engage in questions of medical and healthcare ethics. It emphasizes the communal nature of the medical profession and allows for present and future leaders to come together for the sake of improving the lives of patients.”

"This opportunity – to keep the importance of the doctor-patient relationship in the minds of the next generation of physicians – comes at a most critical time in healthcare,” says Rebecca Kiessling, BRI’s Director of Programs. “NYMC should be proud of their forward-thinking leaders, as this collaboration will serve as a model for how BRI moves forward with other medical schools, in the U.S. and internationally.”

About New York Medical College
Founded in 1860, New York Medical College (NYMC) is one of the oldest and largest health sciences colleges in the country with nearly 1,500 students and 330 residents and clinical fellows, more than 2,600 faculty members and 23,500 living alumni. The College, which joined the Touro College and University System in 2011, is located in Westchester County, New York, and offers degrees from the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Basic Medical Sciences, the School of Health Sciences and Practice, the Touro College of Dental Medicine at NYMC and the Touro College School of Health Sciences’ nursing program at NYMC. NYMC provides a wide variety of clinical training opportunities for students, residents, and practitioners.