Member Spotlights

Melvania Briggs

Consulting Associate in the School of Nursing

Duke AHEAD role

  • Member

Tell us about yourself.

I am an Academic Coordinator at the Duke Physician Assistant Program. My primary role includes the coordination of the Diagnostic Methods courses which spans the first year of the didactic curriculum. I also provide clinical instruction in psychiatry and behavioral medicine.  In early 2015, I plan to practice as a behavioral health PA at Lincoln Community Health Center in Durham, NC. I have over 25 years of experience in behavioral health, clinical research, and primary care. I also earned Certification of Added Qualification (CAQ) in Psychiatry awarded by the National Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA).

My clinical and research interest include behavioral health and primary care integration among rural and underserved populations; Interprofessional Education curriculum development.

What do you hope to get out of Duke AHEAD?

I am thrilled to be a member of the Duke AHEAD community. Faculty development programs like the Writing Boot Camp provided the opportunity to challenge myself further. The Duke AHEAD Health Professional Education (HPE) curriculum committee promotes innovative teaching strategies across the health professions. I enjoy serving on this committee with such a diverse group of educators. I look forward to future Duke AHEAD programs, collaborations and networking opportunities.

Why did you join Duke AHEAD?

I joined Duke AHEAD because of the unique opportunity to collaborate and network with a diverse cohort of educators across Duke Health professions. Moreover, as a junior faculty member, the faculty development programs are immensely valuable.

Sarah Bean

Associate Professor of Pathology

Duke AHEAD role

  • Steering Committee Member

Tell us about yourself.

I am a board certified Cytopathologist and Breast and Gynecological Surgical Pathologist. I have been a member of the Duke Medicine community since 2006. Providing excellent patient care is a core value, and I am also a passionate medical educator. I am most involved in graduate medical education (GME) and continuing medical education (CME). At Duke, I am Chair of the Pathology Residency Clinical Competency Committee (CCC), Program Director of the Cytopathology Fellowship Program, and Program Director of the Surgical Pathology Fellowship Program. For CME, I am Vice-Chair of the Curriculum Committee of the College of American Pathologists (CAP), a committee charged with determining the medical education needs of pathologists nationwide and overseeing the development and maintenance of high quality educational products.

My current scholarly interests include GME, feedback, competence, milestones, professionalism and generational differences in learners.

What do you hope to get out of Duke AHEAD?

The path to academic success in health professions education can be isolating.   Duke AHEAD provides a forum for health professions educators and scholars at Duke University to learn and to benefit from one another. Duke AHEAD can provide assistance with professional development opportunities, educational portfolio development, mentoring, funding sources, and scholarship of health professions education.

Why did you join Duke AHEAD?

Duke AHEAD brings together an interprofessional community of talented health professions educators. Duke AHEAD provides a unique opportunity for its members to network, to learn and share best practices, and to foster professional development.

Alison Clay

Assistant Professor of Surgery

Duke AHEAD role

  • Steering Committee Member

Tell us about yourself.

I am the new Assistant Dean for clinical education in the School of Medicine and former Capstone course director.  I am lucky enough to work with several colleagues from other schools in the interprofessional education clinic and in collaborations that include high fidelity simulation, the room of horrors, the Haunted Hospital, patient safety collaborations and several humanities sessions. 

Outside of work, I LOVE to ride the rolling hills of North Carolina on my lime green, bike machine (road bike) and I enjoy gardening.  

What do you hope to get out of Duke AHEAD?

Faculty development, improved scholarly activity, and in general, encouragement in my day to day work.

What can Duke AHEAD do for you?

Help you network!  In my division, I am one of the only people whose research and career include medical education and Duke AHEAD has helped me to meet others with similar interests.  Those individuals encourage me in my scholarly pursuits, share their innovations in curricular design and inspire me to get better each day.

Why did you join Duke AHEAD?

All of the above.

Kyle Covington

Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery

Duke AHEAD role

  • Steering Committee Member

Tell us about yourself.

I’m in my seventh year on the DPT faculty, where my primary responsibilities include managing the first two years of our Clinical STEPs® program.  This is an integrated clinical education curriculum that places teams of students with clinical educators in practice.  The curriculum was built around our TBL didactic curriculum.   I also am a Duke DPT graduate myself and am in the candidacy phase of my PhD studies at North Carolina State University’s  Educational Research and Policy Analysis program.   Clinically I’m a board certified specialist in neurologic physical therapy and practice each week in the interdisciplinary Neuromuscular Disorders Clinic.  

What do you hope to get out of Duke AHEAD?

Collaboration, mentoring, and enhancement of best practices in health professions education.  We can learn so much from each other and we have a great deal to share with the world about the education things that are happening at Duke in the education of health professionals.   I see Duke AHEAD as a great avenue for mentoring each other in our vital roles as educators of future health professionals.  I hope Duke AHEAD will provide a structure and opportunities for educators to work together to produce high quality educational research that demonstrates the importance of best practice in education.    

What can Duke AHEAD do for you?

As  I complete my PhD work in the next year, Duke AHEAD will be a valuable organization to help me progress in the next phase of my career.  I have interests in educational research and assessment as they relate to physical therapist training, and inter professional education.  I see Duke AHEAD as a prime opportunity to connect me with fellow educational researchers across the institution.  Additionally, I am excited about the opportunities for furthered mentoring and support.  

Why did you join Duke AHEAD?

I joined Duke AHEAD because I saw it as an excellent opportunity to network with educators across the health system.  Our educational practices are so diverse and expansive here at Duke, that I am excited to have an organization like Duke AHEAD that will help those of us with passions in education to work with and learn from each other.  I think Duke AHEAD will provide these opportunities, and I wanted to be a part to that.