For Immediate Release

Contact: Andrea E. Garcia, Touro University California
Associate Vice President, University Advancement

W: (707) 638-5272
C: (707) 280-8771

Touro University Staff Educational Innovations Increase Graduate Medical Student Empathy

(Vallejo, CA – May 7, 2018) – Three times a charm for Dr. Tami Hendriksz, Touro University California’s Assistant Dean for Clinical Integration, who received her third “Innovation in the Development of Enduring Educational Materials Award” from the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine’s (AACOM’s) during their recent Annual Awards Banquet.

Dr. Hendriksz was honored for her innovation of using Patient Perspective Sessions to increase preclinical undergraduate medical student empathy, motivation to learn and ability to recall information. She manages 18 sessions that occur throughout the year inviting patients with Cystic Fibrosis, Multiple Sclerosis, congenital heart defects, leukemia, or brain tumors to speak to students about their experience.

Students learn first-hand about how these diseases affect patients’ lives. “It is so much more meaningful and impactful to be able to hear a patient’s story about living with a disease rather than just reading about it in a book,” says Dr. Hendriksz. “Having the opportunity to actually hear a patient describe their diagnosis and their treatment process, and then having the opportunity to ask that patient questions adds to the student’s ability to learn about the disease, to remember the disease process and also increases their empathy towards patients that have similar diseases.”

AACOM’s Society of Osteopathic Medical Educators (SOME) confers this national award annually recognizing how specific educational innovations have resulted in meaningful change at the institutions where they are being implemented. Founded in 1898, AACOM represents the 34 accredited colleges of osteopathic medicine in the United States and promotes excellence in medical education, research and service as well as fosters innovation and quality of education to improve the health of the American public. Osteopathic Medicine colleges are educating nearly 29,000 future physicians – more than 20 percent of all medical students in the country!

About the Touro College and University System:

Touro is a system of non-profit institutions of higher and professional education. Touro College was chartered in 1970 primarily to enrich the Jewish heritage, and to serve the larger American and global community. Approximately 18,000 students are currently enrolled in its various schools and divisions. Touro has 35 campuses and locations in New York, California, Nevada, Illinois, Berlin, Jerusalem and Moscow. New York Medical College; Touro University California and Touro University Nevada; Touro University Worldwide and its Touro College Los Angeles division; as well as Hebrew Theological College in Skokie, Ill. are separately accredited institutions within the Touro College and University System. For further information on Touro College, please go to: