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Speakers at an Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine fellowship program at Drexel University College of Medicine.


To our ELAM Community:

It is with a heavy heart that we are letting you know of the passing of D. Walter Cohen, DDS, chancellor emeritus of Drexel University College of Medicine, and a co-founder of ELAM. Dr. Cohen had also served as the dean of the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine.

When Dr. Cohen designed ELAM, he recognized that transforming the face of academic medicine would require significant culture change and persistent efforts to sustain the success of women leaders. His early leadership and strong continued support have made the program the success that ELAM is today. Dr. Cohen recently told the class of 2017–18 that the ELAM program was his greatest achievement.

His loss will be deeply felt by the ELAM community. We extend our condolences to his family, friends and colleagues.

Dr. Cohen's obituary is available at

Yun Saksena, DMD, MMSc
Yun Saksena, DMD, MMSc

"I believe in ELAM's mission of increasing the representation of women in leadership roles in academic health institutions, which is still very much needed. I have personally gained immensely from my ELAM experience and treasure the community."
Yun Saksena, DMD, MMSc, ELAM Class of '16 - Read Yun's Story

"ELAM's impact is beyond measure. There are ELUMs engaged in leadership roles throughout our organization. I can’t imagine us functioning without them."
John S. Penn, PhD, Phyllis G. and William B. Snyder Endowed Professor and Vice Chairman, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, and Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

"How do you measure the inner strength that nudges you forward when the call comes to toss your hat in the ring or the true recognition that what you bring to the table is of great value? Listening, speaking up, and speaking out are the results of a conscious appreciation of one's own value, skills and knowledge … and these are the results of ELAM."
Anne Simpson, ELAM Class of '13

About ELAM

The Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine® (ELAM®) program is a year-long part-time fellowship for women faculty in schools of medicine, dentistry, public health and pharmacy. The program is dedicated to developing the professional and personal skills required to lead and manage in today's complex health care environment, with special attention to the unique challenges facing women in leadership positions. More than 1,000 ELAM alumnae hold leadership positions in institutions around the world.

Learn More About ELAM


Application to the 2019 – 2020 fellowship is now open.

Visit Application page for details

Nancy Spector, MD, is one of the authors of a study about underrepresentation of women as first authors of perspective-type articles. The work appeared in JAMA Network, and was also highlighted in Physician's Weekly.

Read the ELAM program's 2017 Annual Report [PDF] (March 2018)

ELAM is pleased to announce the graduation of the Class of 2018. Learn more.

ELAM announces selection of the 2018 – 2019 class. Learn more.

Contact Us

The ELAM Program
Drexel University College of Medicine
2900 W. Queen Lane
Philadelphia, PA 19129
215.991.8171 (Fax)


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ELAM is a core program of the Institute for Women's Health and Leadership at Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pa. The Institute continues the legacy of advancing women in medicine that began in 1850 with the founding of the Female Medical College of Pennsylvania, the nation's first women's medical school and a predecessor of today's Drexel University College of Medicine.