American Council of Academic Plastic Surgeons (ACAPS)
December 2022
Message From the President

Arun Gosain, ACAPS President
Arun Gosain
ACAPS President

ACAPS has made numerous steps forward since the October Bulletin Brief. Some of these steps include the first Strategic Planning Meeting in the last 11 years, held during PSTM2022. The essence of activities were summarized through ACAPS commitment to 1) Membership; 2) Education; 3) Medical Student and Resident Support; 4) Global Health. These priorities, and the respective charges by each committee to achieve these priorities, are outlined in a newly created Operations Manual that will be continually updated on the ACAPS website. In essence, ACAPS wishes to become more inclusive of educators at all levels rather than solely representing “academic plastic surgeons.” In this spirit, ACAPS seeks to become much more inclusive of those involved in plastic surgery education, including surgeons practicing in non-academic settings, international members, residents (both domestic and international), and medical students – all of whom are significant contributors to education in plastic surgery. Consistent with this mission of expanding the educational network in plastic surgery, ACAPS is happy to announce the launch of "Sponsor a Student" in which a yearly contribution can be made to send one student to attend the annual ACAPS Winter Meeting and/or PREPPED Course focused on providing an educational forum for students who are underrepresented in medicine (URIM). You may donate to sponsor a student for the upcoming 2023 Winter Meeting in New Orleans at the following site:

This month, we are highlighting the work of the DEI Committee and the Mentoring Committee. In addition, we will highlight the role of the ACAPS Liaison to the Council of Faculty and Academic Societies (CFAS) program within the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).


Arun Gosain
ACAPS President

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee:

Ash Patel, MBChB FACS
Ash Patel, MBChB FACS

Chair: Ash Patel
Co-Chair: Kerri Woodberry

The DEI Committee shall develop programs to promote and support Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Plastic Surgery and shall recommend future improvements in that process.

Specific goals for the year
1 – The Plastic Surgery Residency Information Network is ready for a closed evaluation prior to a full roll-out. The data fields have been selected to provide a clear and uniform resource about both independent and integrated programs for applicants and their mentors. For medical students, data fields include links to research opportunities, contacts for mentoring unaffiliated students and visiting rotation scholarships.
The committee will collect feedback on the database from students and programs to determine if revisions are necessary.

2 – The committee identified a lack of diversity in the PSF visiting professors for the current term. Committee leaders engaged with ASPS/PSF leaders in a discussion to develop mechanisms to increase diversity in future years. The committee resolved to supply a nominee each year, and encourage/support colleagues potentially interested in participating.

3 – The Committee recognizes the multiple challenges that unaffiliated students/those without a home program face, and that these students are frequently from minoritized groups. We have decided to prioritize initiatives to assist these students.

a – Development of webinars providing introductory information about plastic surgery to unaffiliated students. This is an exciting collaborative initiative approved by the respective leadership of ACAPS and ASPS, and pending discussion with the AAPS leadership. The goal is to provide geographically focused sessions, aimed specifically at students early in their UME. We plan to launch these webinars in the Spring of 2023.

b – Engage with Medical Student Outreach Committee to develop a guide for “best practices” for mentoring unaffiliated students, particularly regarding distance mentoring.

c – Develop a structured mentoring program (similar to PROPEL) specifically directed at minoritized and unaffiliated students. Mentoring teams would include residents and faculty members. Implementation of this program would require development of guidance material and student resources (such as a research handbook).

d – Despite the increase in availability of scholarships for visiting rotations, this continues to be a significant financial burden. We have discussed creating a clearinghouse to connect prospective visiting students with residents and students affiliated with programs who are available to assist with housing/accommodation.

Mentoring Committee

Adeyiza Momoh, MD, Chair
Adeyiza Momoh, MD

Chair: Adeyiza Momoh
Co-Chair: Gregory Evans

The mentoring committee organized a mentoring session at Plastic Surgery the Meeting this past fall. It was a 2-hour long session entitled “Practical and Cutting-Edge Concepts in Effective Mentoring”. A diverse panel of experienced speakers from institutions across the country were invited and delivered excellent presentations on purposefully selected topics. Topics presented in the first hour included- Building effective mentor-mentee relationships, mentoring across differences, sponsorship and helping mentees craft their career trajectories. In the second hour speakers presented on Team-Based Mentorship in Resident and Faculty Development. After each of the panel presentations time was spent in discussion on the topics based on questions from the audience.
The Goldwyn Visiting Professor selection will be performed by the committee for the next cycle.
The committee plans to work on three key initiatives over the course of the next year.

  • The first initiative will involve organizing a mentoring network/connection event at the upcoming winter meeting in New Orleans. Interest in participation will be sought out in advance with mentor-mentee pairings made ahead of the meeting. Connections made that this event can be further developed and can provide components of a mentoring team organized within the structure outlined in the second initiative.
  • The second initiative will be to encourage ACAPS member involvement with the ASPS PROPEL (Professional Resource Opportunities in PRS Education and Leadership) program. The PROPEL program is a successful mentorship program that brings together teams of surgeons consisting of senior and mid to early career surgeons and senior and junior plastic surgery residents. Specific mentorship groups with interests in education can be formed within the existing PROPEL infrastructure. All ACAPS members are encouraged to join PROPEL, as this is the group with the greatest experience and interest focused on education in plastic surgery. For more information on PROPEL click here.
    PROPEL will accept applications to begin in June for the new PROPEL teams to be initiated this fall.
  • The third initiative will be to organize a series of interactive webinars led by faculty mentors on topics of relevance to students, residents and faculty, that will be scheduled over the course of the year. These webinars will be of educational benefit and will also serve as an opportunity make connections with individuals that might benefit from mentoring relationships that the committee can help facilitate.

ACAPS Liaison to the Council of Faculty and Academic Societies of the AAMC (CFAS/AAMC)

Richard Korentager, MD
Richard Korentager, MD

The Council of Faculty and Academic Societies (CFAS) is one of three councils within the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) that include CFAS, Council of Deans and Council of Teaching Hospitals and Health Systems. The Council includes 170 accredited US and Canadian Medical Schools, 400 + teaching hospital and health systems including the VA Medical Center and 70 + faculty and academic societies. Those groups represent 191,000 full time faculty members, 149,000 residents and 95,000 medical students. CFAS has a large number of committees that include:

  • Advocacy, Communication, Diversity and Inclusion, Biomedical Research and Education, Program, Mission Alignment and Impact of Faculty Educators, Nominating and Engagement, Faculty Resilience
CFAS has two meetings a year, AAMC-Learn/Serve/Lead in the fall and stand along CFAS meeting in the winter. I attended the AAMC-LSL meeting in Nashville this fall and I was able to attend the Biomedical Research and Education committee and the Faculty Resilience committee. Major topics covered at AAMC-LSL and CFAS fall meeting included:
  1. Signaling in Residency Applications-geographic and program signal, varies among groups from dermatology 3 signal up to orthopedics 30 signals. Some use one for “reach” program and rest where they think they have better chance. Programs used as screening tool, tie breaker to decide if interview. 75% of programs felt signaling encouraged them to look at applicants they might otherwise have overlooked. 25% of programs received >50% of the signals. Signaling was much less exclusive in orthopedic surgery, and in some programs 80% of their applicants had signaled. Overall with dermatology, general surgery and internal medicine, signaling significantly increased the likelihood of interview offer rate; however, it doesn’t change rates of interview offers with women or URIMs. Programs still need to clearly define if they want an individual to signal their home institution or institutions for which they did an away rotation. Dermatology, internal medicine, and plastic surgery specifically said not to signal home or away rotations.
  2. Climate Action and the Future of Medicine multiple sessions and keynote speakers
  3. Role of Technology in Addressing DEI in Med Ed-video series and AI based tools are starting to be used.
  4. Compensation Models for Medical Educators. There are a variety of compensation models used. ACAPS may consider a survey to look at the range of compensation models used among member institutions and “best practice” options, and the effect of different models of compensation on faculty retention and engagement.