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Manuel’s Dexterity: Case’s successor brings foresight, flexibility to role

Published on Thursday, January 15, 2015

By: Gary Pettus at 601-815-9266 or gpettus@umc.edu.

Published on January 15, 2015

Dr. R. Stephen Manuel, a national figure in medical school admissions, will help determine the future of health care in Mississippi as UMMC's new associate dean for admissions in the School of Medicine.

Manuel left his post as assistant dean of admissions at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in Ohio to take over for Dr. Steven Case, whose effective retirement date was Nov. 11. Manuel arrived at UMMC in mid-October.

Also appointed assistant professor of family medicine at UMMC, Manuel will lead UMMC in selecting the state's future physicians.

It's a dynamic time to arrive at UMMC, he said. "We have a brand-new School of Medicine coming.

"Dr. Keeton has talked about expanding the class. Over the next two or three years, we'll focus on recruiting quality students while enlarging the pool of candidates."

Under Manuel's guidance at the University of Cincinnati, the medical school became the first in the country to use multiple mini-interviews to select applicants. He has written and spoken considerably on this subject.

In fact, he met Case about three years ago at a workshop in Cincinnati, where Case was introduced to the mini-interview, a tool he then used at UMMC.

Case said his successors' reputation is well-known. "I believe he will take this process and make it more sophisticated."

For his part, Manuel said he has "big shoes to fill. Dr. Case has put UMMC in position as a national leader in admissions and the admissions process."

Dr. LouAnn Woodward, associate vice chancellor for health affairs and vice dean of the School of Medicine, said, "Trends in admissions are changing, and Dr. Manuel, like Dr. Case, has the ability to keep us ahead of the curve. He has the flexibility to see what's coming next."

Arriving at UMMC with Manuel was his wife, Dr. Nicole Borges, as professor of pediatrics and assistant dean for medical education research and scholarship.

At Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, she was assistant dean of medical education research and evaluation, and professor in the Department of Community Health at the Boonshoft School of Medicine.  Elected into Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society, she has more than 50 peer reviewed publications and has served on Association of American Medical Colleges and APA committees.

Before his stint in Cincinnati, Manuel was director of admissions at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine, Rootstown, Ohio.

He then joined Cincinnati's College of Medicine, where he distinguished himself as assistant dean of admissions for the past 9 ½ years. Manuel, who received his Doctor of Philosophy degree in educational administration from Indiana State University in 2001, also held leadership positions in admissions at ISU and at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Ind.