The Stuart O. Bondurant, MD, Dean Emeritus Memorial Lecture took place on March 14, 2019, honoring Bondurant’s countless contributions to medicine and his service to the UNC School of Medicine as Dean and CEO for over 15 years. Dr. Andrew Greganti paid homage to Bondurant’s memory with a lecture called “Lifelong Learning.”
“Stuart Bondurant was a giant in academic medicine and a remarkable human,” said Dr. Ron Falk, Chair of the UNC Department of Medicine. “But what we want to do today is focus on what he meant to this institution. He was deeply committed to the best scientific research, and to making that research integral to everything we do. I had the good fortune to know Stuart as a young faculty member, and his lifelong commitment to education was exemplified by his presence in this room.
“Today, we’ve asked someone who has also spent a lifetime of learning to present Medicine Grand Rounds. Andrew Greganti is truly the physician’s physician. There’s also no one in our institution who has spent more time thinking about how to teach and learn.”
Dr. Andrew Greganti joined UNC in 1977 and has been a faculty member for over 40 years, welcoming many guest speakers to the Grand Rounds podium.
“I have vivid memories of looking to my right and seeing Stuart, and I must say I miss him a great deal,” said Greganti. “Preparing for this topic has been especially challenging, but I have found great solace in the fact that I am presenting this in honor of Stuart Bondurant who was a model of lifelong learning.”
Greganti’s lecture emphasized the importance of self-reflection and self-directed learning, with a commitment to maintaining a very high level of competency. Recognizing the inherent barriers to success, he encouraged residents to find their own comfortable and productive way to learn on a regular basis.
“The half-life of medical knowledge is about 2 to 5 years and continues to decrease,” Greganti said as he identified his top sources for news. “We have to commit to lifelong learning or education for life. Our patients, students and peer physicians expect nothing less.”
Greganti recognized six learning takeaways:
1.) Lifelong self-directed learning requires that you accept that you will never complete the course hours required;
2.) The short half-life of medical knowledge makes it essential;
3.) It must be self-directed based on self-reflection — a careful analysis of what you don’t know;
4.) You must develop an individualized approach, utilizing an increasing number of options;
5.) Case-based learning is one of the most effective approaches; and
6.) You must set aside the time to do it.
The lecture concluded with Dr. Jeffrey Houpt–who served as Dean of the UNC School of Medicine after Bondurant–fondly recalling the transfer of leadership.
“Stuart had a remarkable skill for listening and having people walk away feeling comforted,” Houpt said, who became Dean in 1997. “I remember talking with him about medicine and the challenges at the time, some of the most delightful conversations I’ve ever had. It’s that kind of human warmth and interaction that people related to when it came to Stuart Bondurant. Therefore, with his passing, let’s carry forth a few of those traits into the future.”
To find an archived recording of this lecture, visit Medicine Grand Rounds Lecture.
Dr. Stuart Bondurant died on May 26, 2018, and his achievements as a physician, scholar, and administrator have been recognized internationally. He served with distinction in the highest leadership positions of some of the country’s most distinguished professional and scientific organizations. Visit Remembering Stuart Bondurant to learn more.