Paths To Leadership

A School of Medicine Program
for Developing Faculty Leaders

Paths to Leadership (PTL) is a School of Medicine program designed to provide emerging faculty leaders with the knowledge and skills to be effective leaders and managers. The learning is built around a project conducted by the participants themselves that will deliver real value both to the participants and to OHSU. This program is offered by the OHSU Division of Management under the sponsorship of the School of Medicine. 

Who is this intended for?

Paths to Leadership is intended for School of Medicine faculty who are currently in--or taking on--early or mid-stage leadership roles within their departments, divisions, or elsewhere in the School of Medicine or OHSU. Individuals who are considering taking on such roles or wish to develop their individual leadership skills are also invited to apply.

What are the benefits?

Participants will benefit through:

  • New concepts, insights and perspectives leading to solutions for current issues
  • Learning that adapts to their daily reality
  • A deeper understanding of OHSU and the School of Medicine
  • Having greater personal impact in promoting change or new initiatives
  • A trusted group of colleagues and peers 

OHSU will benefit by:

  • Improving its leadership and management capacity
  • Leveraging participants' experience to address organizational issues
  • Promoting a learning culture
  • Developing and sustaining champions for change

Learning Overview

Paths to Leadership is organized around five learning themes:

  • Growing self and broadening perspectives.  Building on strengths, design thinking.
  • Understanding the environment.  Understanding systems and complexity; organizations and silos; OHSU and its role in the American healthcare system; understanding OHSU's financial drivers.
  • Leading organizations.  Managing projects, improving processes, building a business case; problem solving and decision making.
  • Building collaborations.  Collaboration and community; building effective teams.
  • Leading change.  Using conscious influence; building your political coalition.

Learning Modality

Learning will occur via content delivery sessions and a "learn-by-doing" application project. The content sessions will be sequenced to provide just-in-time learning for the application project.

  • Content sessions
    These sessions will be 90 minutes in duration and will focus on the learning themes identified above as well as on the knowledge, skills, and tools that will be needed in the application project—specifically, fundamentals and tools for managing projects; understanding and improving processes; building a business case, understanding OHSU finances. The 2015 schedule is currently in development but will be similar to the 2014 schedule.

  • Application project
    The goal of the application project is to provide a learn-by-doing experience that creates value both for the participants and OHSU. Participants will work in teams of 4 or 5 on a particular project throughout the duration of the program. The principal criteria for the projects are that they will be valuable learning experiences for participants and will add value to OHSU.

2010 Projects

  • System Approaches to Quality at OHSU
  • Building a Financially Stable Model for Continuing Medical Education at OHSU


2011 Projects

  • Integrating Integrative Medicine at OHSU
  • Optimization of Multi-Disciplinary Clinics: Models, Business plan, Assessment Tools, Telemedicine – the Future of Multi-D Clinics
  • Reducing Re-Admissions at OHSU
  • Promoting Interdisciplinary Research at OHSU
  • Communication in Action: The Surgical Pause

2012 Projects

  • Clinician Interest in Developing Outpatient Telehealth at OHSU
  • Operating Room Efficiency: 1st Case OR Start Times and Delays
  • Wait Time Assessment in OHSU Clinics
  • Faculty Development—Preparing New Faculty for Success

2013 Projects

  • Stories from the Trenches—A Snapshot of Work Life at OHSU
  • Identifying and Facilitating Research Collaborations at OHSU
  • Bottoms-Up Approach to Quality Improvement in Colorectal Surgery
  • Enhancing Learning & Productivity in EPIC
  • Knight Cancer Wellness Program for Patients and their Caregivers

2014 Projects

  • Residency Selection at OHSU - Informing Institutional Diversity Strategies
  • Faculty Development Experiment
  • Multi-Disciplinary Clinics at OHSU - Integrating the Preferred Provider
  • Hospital-wide Approach to Patient-Centered Inpatient Orientation

Comments from the Class of 2014

  • “The diversity of leadership skills was inspiring, there is no single path. The importance of having clear, short list goals that can be easily explained - was very helpful."
  • "I am fairly cynical and tend to have a negative knee jerk reaction - this class has helped me balance out that attitude in part due to the very healthy discussions with the participants. Learning I might not be alone in some approaches or being forced to clarify my position was very useful."
  • "Getting stakeholders involved is very important. Leadership at OHSU is very approachable. I learned navigational skills."
  • "A lot can be done by coming up with a plan and just executing it, provided you can come up with the resources. There are a lot of folks here willing to listen and to cooperate if you have an interesting and useful idea. There are also some who want to stick to the playbook, but by-and-large, there is a lot of goodwill, support and optimism here."


There is no dollar cost to participants or participants' departments for this program for the cohort beginning in January 2015. 

Schedule and Time Commitment

The 2015 program is scheduled to run from Tuesday, January 6, to Tuesday, June 9, on consecutive Tuesdays from 4:30-6:00 PM in Mackenzie Hall, Room 2201. Typically, participants will spend up to 4 hours per week in pre- and post-session reading and project work.

Further Information and to apply

Contact or 503-346-0365
Paths to Leadership Participants 2010-2014