Enhancing MSU’s health sciences programs: transitions, strategic roles and collaborations

June 14, 2024


president Guskiewicz headshot in a regal room.

Dear Spartans,

With the pending transition of Dr. Norman Beauchamp to Georgetown University as its executive vice president of Health Sciences, I write today with updates on the structure at MSU to support our excellent and rising focus on our leadership in health science. As the only Big Ten university that is home to two medical schools and a nationally recognized college of nursing, and as we continue to advance our commitment to excellence in health care education, research and community engagement, it is imperative that we have a strategic structure underpinning our programs. This structure not only supports our academic and research objectives but also fortifies our external partnerships and business strategies.

When the current executive vice president for Health Sciences position was created in 2019, it unlocked important synergies across our three human health colleges and provided, in part, a framework for pursuing bold new partnerships like the one we now enjoy with Henry Ford Health, along with our continuing relationships with Corewell Health, McLaren, Sparrow and many others across the state. At the same time, there are key academic and research components within our health colleges that benefit from closer alignment with the traditional academic structure of the university. Times of transition provide an opportunity to assess our structures to ensure we maximize our strengths and the opportunities that lie ahead.

Given the complexity of modern-day health care, both internally at the university and as it relates to external partners, I also believe it is vital to not rush a final decision on long-term structures in a condensed timeframe. Therefore, for the next six months, a modified Health Sciences structure will be followed as outlined below.

Effective July 1, 2024, the colleges of Human Medicine, Osteopathic Medicine and Nursing will report up through the Office of the Provost instead of the Office of Health Sciences. Norm Hubbard is being elevated to senior vice president for Health Sciences and will report directly to me. Norm will be responsible for our faculty-led clinical operations, MSU Health Care, external clinical partnerships and the Henry Ford Health + Michigan State University Health Sciences. College of Human Medicine Dean Aron Sousa will take on the additional title of executive dean and be responsible, under the direction of the provost, for overseeing and coordinating across the three health colleges. Norm and Aron will collaborate and coordinate closely to ensure alignment between our academic mission and external relationships. They will jointly oversee the Office of Health Sciences and will work closely with the College of Nursing Dean Leigh Small and College of Osteopathic Medicine Dean Joyce deJong to establish a Health Sciences Council to explore, plan and develop opportunities to advance the university’s collective efforts in teaching and research. The council will support collaboration on curriculum and interprofessional education and will develop a strategy for improving our performance in biomedical and public health research.

The Board of Trustees will review these positions at the June 28 public meeting. This multifaceted approach ensures our students receive the highest quality education, preparing them for the dynamic demands of the health care industry. The role of executive dean recognizes the value and synergy between the three health colleges in coordinating efforts and keeps all MSU academic programs aligned under the Office of the Provost. As senior vice president for Health Sciences, Norm will complement our academic work with a focus on strategic partners, enhancing our programs’ outreach and impact. These partnerships are essential for providing students with internships, residency opportunities and job placement as well as securing external funding and resources for research and development. By engaging with external partners, we are maximizing opportunities for collaborative research, technological advancements and innovative health care solutions. This ensures our MSU programs stay at the forefront of health care trends and technologies.

Collaboration between the Office of the Provost, executive dean and senior vice president for Health Sciences will be pivotal to our collective success. This coordination ensures that our health sciences programs are both academically robust and also practically relevant and economically viable. By working together, we will leverage academic excellence and strategic partnerships to create a holistic and impactful health care education ecosystem.

Our commitment to enhancing health care education and services is unwavering, and I know both Senior Vice President Hubbard and Executive Dean Sousa share that mission and commitment and will continue the outstanding work started by Norm Beauchamp. Although there will certainly be additional questions that arise as a different structure takes effect during this interim period, I have every confidence in our faculty, staff and deans in the colleges of Human Medicine, Osteopathic Medicine and Nursing to look toward a bright future and to work as partners with one another and with myself and Interim Provost Thomas Jeitschko to ensure the collective success of Health Sciences at MSU. Simultaneously, I will continue to work with each of them, and will continue to listen to feedback and input from a cross section of stakeholders as final decisions are made on the most effective long-term structure within the next six months.

Thank you for your dedication and support as we embark on this exciting journey. I look forward to working closely with Norm Hubbard, Aron Sousa and the entire MSU Health Sciences team as we look to the future. And please join me in again in thanking Dr. Beauchamp, a dedicated Spartan, for his commitment to MSU as he finishes up his remaining weeks at the university.


president Guskiewicz signature

Kevin M. Guskiewicz, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Kinesiology