Dr. Bruce Newton receives international 2016 Master Teacher award

LEIDEN, Holland – Dr. Bruce W. Newton, Professor and Chair of Anatomy, was bestowed the 2016 Master Teacher award by the International Association of Medical Science Educations (IAMSE) recently at the 2016 IAMSE Meeting in Leiden, The Netherlands.

The Master Teacher Award honors an IAMSE member who, over the course of many years, has consistently demonstrated extraordinary excellence in teaching, both at his/her institution and within IAMSE.   This is the first time an osteopathic medical educator has received the award from IAMSE – an international organization whose membership is comprised of medical educators from across the health professions and over forty countries across the world.  When receiving this award, Dr. Newton gratefully thanked all those IAMSE colleagues and friends who have helped him over the years to become a Master Teacher.

“It is with great pride that we extend congratulations to Dr. Bruce Newton for being named as the recipient of IAMSE’s prestigious Master Teacher Award,” said Stephen C. Shannon, President and CEO of the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM). “As the first representative from an osteopathic institution to receive this award, Dr. Newton represents the growing positive impact that our exceptional osteopathic medical educators are having on the rapidly changing health care landscape – both nationally and abroad.”

Bruce W. Newton earned his B.S. in Biology at Slippery Rock University in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. He obtained his PhD in Anatomy at the University of Kentucky in Lexington and subsequently spent four years in a Neuroscience Post-Doc at the University of Rochester, Rochester, New York.

He spent 25 years at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, Arkansas where he rose through the ranks to full professor of Neurobiology and Developmental Sciences as well as Educational Development. Dr. Newton was a course director for the Gross Anatomy and Neuroscience courses, Chair of the Medical School Curriculum Committee, and the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education for three years. He was awarded a Golden Apple Award by the freshmen class as well as receiving nine Red Sash awards given by senior students to those faculty members who had the greatest impact on their education. While in Arkansas, he co-wrote the book How to be an Effective Course Director with fellow IAMSE members Drs. Jay Menna and Patrick Tank and has presented the IAMSE faculty development course of the same name five times in the past 13 years.

Dr. Newton joined the Campbell University Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine faculty in 2013 as Professor of Anatomy. He is currently the Chair of the Anatomy and is the Block Leader for the musculoskeletal block and the Course Director for the Musculoskeletal and Gross Anatomy courses. Dr. Newton has presented the IAMSE Faculty Development course of the same name five times in the past 13 years.

In addition to his outstanding achievements as a professor of anatomy, Dr. Newton has ongoing research regarding affective and cognitive empathy and has received global attention for this work.

“The decline in empathy among students over the course of allopathic medical education is globally recognized,” said Newton.  “My research is being used to support recent studies which show a way to promote empathy is to practice mindfulness – relaxation, yoga, meditation, reflective journaling.  Implementing these practices in medical school helps reduce student stress and establishes a routine, which if maintained throughout their career, will decrease medical errors and increase good physician-patient communication skills.”

Dr. Newton’s current research examines changes in empathy among osteopathic medical students where these data will be compared to the allopathic data he has previously collected.

“We congratulate Dr. Newton on his receipt of this distinguished award,” said Dr. John M. Kauffman, dean of the medical school.  “His research on maintaining student empathy speaks to his passion for teaching and his strides for excellence are evident inside the anatomy lab and in his efforts toward the overall development of our students.”