Priti Parikh, Ph.D., professor and vice chair of research education and professional development in the Department of Surgery in the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine, received the Reed Williams Excellence in Innovation in Surgical Education Award at the Association for Surgical Education annual conference in San Diego on April 14.
The award recognizes exemplary performance by surgical educators who advance innovations to improve teaching, learning and collaboration in surgical education.
In her current role, Parikh is responsible for teaching all the what’s, why’s and how’s of research to medical students and residents, organizing faculty development programs, developing curriculum, creating professional development opportunities for surgery residents, and championing diversity, equity and inclusion and resident well-being initiatives.
Parikh was honored by the Association for Surgical Education for reinvigorating the scholarly output of the Department of Surgery by developing and implementing a structured research curriculum and assisting medical students, residents and faculty with their research ideas.
The curriculum includes educational seminars on the conduct of research for entering interns, the process of study thesis generation, and an assessment plan to track the progress of scholarly activities through annual research milestones. The innovative curriculum has made research projects by medical students and residents more manageable while enhancing their experience and engagement in research.
Many residents and medical students have benefited from Parikh’s curricular changes, receiving consistent invitations to regional and national meetings to present their scholarly work. The number of presentations has increased for residents by 820%, students by 4,600% and faculty by 488%. The number of publications also increased for residents by 59%, medical students by 225% and faculty by 130%.
“Similar to any innovation, curriculum development and education is a team effort,” Parikh said.
She recognized the support she received from her team, Mary McCarthy, M.D., professor of surgery and former department chair, and Randy Woods, M.D., associate professor and chair of the Department of Surgery and associate dean of graduate medical education.
“It’s all about working with amazing teammates and nothing would have been possible without the support from Drs. McCarthy and Woods,” Parikh said.
After serving as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Wright State, Parikh joined the faculty of the Department of Surgery in the Boonshoft School of Medicine in 2012.
She received her Ph.D. in food microbiology from Virginia Tech and her master’s degree in microbiology and bachelor’s degree in microbiology from Sardar Patel University in India.
The mission of the Association for Surgical Education is to lead innovation, scholarship and professional development in surgical education.
Parikh is an active member of the association, serving as the vice chair of the Surgical Education Research Committee and as a member of the Academic Advancement Committee and the Assessment, Curriculum and Evaluation Committee.