10 COMMUNIQU FALL 2015 STUDENTS GROW PERSONALLY learning leadership and compassionate care STUDENTS by Pat Grauer During the last days of August when most of their classmates were resting up for the start of fall semester a group of MSUCOM students were in retreat for the weekend in Fee Hall. The agenda was eclectic medical empathy as expressed in 19th-century art self-care what a physician learned from his patients mindful movement and physical therapy lessons from Yukon the therapy dog the student as presenter transformational health and stress and self-care. It was the annual welcome back meeting for students in MSUCOMs Leadership Academy for Compassionate Care an initiative which is rapidly growing in depth and scope. Established in 2012 by faculty John Meulendyk Celia Guro and Jason Beckrow the Academy addresses the lack of compassionate care in our medical system and the need for leadership development among medical students. The LACC has been a wonderful experience for me as a medical student said Arpon Shahed Class of 2017. It helps us learn about different perspectives on the healing processes of the body and gives us new tools to further develop our training beyond textbook medicine. Their approach rests on four pillars 1 arts in medicine as a vehicle to learn and express compassion 2 the importance of self-care for medical students and physicians 3 enhancing the patient-doctor relationship and 4 addressing the economic and ethical issues of compassionate care. The spectrum of LACCs 10 core values extends from the components of suffering to the importance of a physicians involvement in public policy. In addition the LACC is building a community of physicians who share its values and support one another and the Academy. To me the Academy teaches the essence of being an excellent physician said Guro. We work with the students to enable them to be comfortable in examining various aspects of themselves. It is through this compassion and knowing themselves that our students will really listen to their patients with their hearts. Also we experiment with many new kinds of activities and subjects that are not always in the curriculum. The Academy has expanded both in scope from seven to nearly 40 students and widened its array of programming. Each student enrolled in LACC is required to take Transforming the Doctor-Patient Relationship a weekend-long workshop open to all students faculty and staff. Sponsored by the MSU Federal Credit Union Institute for Arts Creativity at the Wharton Center nationally recognized consultants Stuart Pimsler and Suzanne Costello from Minneapolis use the full spectrum of artistic experience to teach ways to enhance communication and to help participants be more aware of themselves. During 2014-2015 members of the Academy heard presentations from MSUCOM alumnus David Grimshaw on empathy in practice from former Lansing mayor and State Rep. David Hollister on the politics of compassion and from alumna Pat Schmidt and two courageous patients on best practices for end-of-life care. Meulendyk presented a full elective in nutrition based on the principles of functional medicine. Students practiced hand massage learned meditation skills made masks showing their inner and outer faces and nished the year giving presentations using the Pecha Kucha 20 20-second slides method. The LACC program leads the way in reclaiming the compassionate roots of osteopathic medicine as founded by Andrew Taylor Still noted Meulendyk. It also accentuates the heart and philosophy promoted by truly creative thinkers at Michigan State University. The LACC emphasizes knowing oneself before knowing the patient he said. Todays students attempt to nd out about themselves by mining data on cellphones and laptops. Personal eye contact touch and bodily awareness are often missing. These are the basic tools for showing compassion. Based on both the positive responses from students and the importance of the LACCs mission the Planning Committee comprising Meulendyk Guro Arlene Sierra Terry McNamara Pat Grauer Perry Parkhurst and Marcy Schlinger is seeking grant funding to enhance and enlarge the effort. The ultimate long-range vision includes working with faculty and staff to integrate the principles of the LACC at all levels of education in the college including preadmission programs predoctoral education graduate medical education and continuing medical education developing an advanced degree program in compassionate care and creating community programs to assist patients and caregivers. For more information on LACC see httpcom.msu.edulacc.