GU Professor Enjoys UW Medical School Role
By Cindy Hval
SPOKANE, Wash. — Kevin Measor is an admitted college geek.
“I love college and everything about it,” he said.
So, serving on the faculty of two universities suits him perfectly. Measor has been part of the University of Washington School of Medicine-Gonzaga University Regional Health Partnership since the two universities joined forces to train the next generation of physicians nearly three years ago.
“As a college geek, it’s amazing to be part of this partnership between a private Jesuit university and a public research university,” Measor said.
He teaches two courses that are part of an integrated curriculum that combines basic science and clinical material — molecular and cellular basis of disease for first-year med students and mind, brain and behavior for second-year med students. Measor enjoys seeing the change that occurs in the students’ knowledge base and confidence level between year one and two, and this year he’s been delighted to see some familiar faces.
This year 10 of the 120 first- and second-year students are Gonzaga graduates.
“It’s really great for me to see them here,” he said.
Measor, who teaches advanced physiology: neurophysiology, 300-level special topics in biology and introduction to microbiology, along with other courses at Gonzaga, also serves as a GU pre-health adviser. His experience in teaching for UWSOM has been helpful when he talks with students about their education and career track.
“I'm a science prof, but you don’t have to be a science major to get into medical school,” said Measor. “Medical schools like to see students who are passionate about something and that something doesn’t have to be science.”
His role as a pre-health adviser allows him to work with many different offices on campus with which he ordinarily wouldn’t connect. He’s leveraged those connections as a way to further help his students interact with the community.
Measor regularly conducts STEM outreach events throughout Spokane, and he never has a shortage of both undergraduate and medical school students eager to help.
In November, Gonzaga’s Center for Community Engagement hosted a STEM Fair on campus at the Hemmingson Center and UWSOM students helped staff six tables of activities.
“Both UW and GU students are passionate about service,” Measor said. “When the medical students put on a program for our pre-health undergraduates, the medical students reached out to graduates to talk about their programs, and organized panels and break-out sessions about health and career options.”
When a local high school teacher reached out to him because of his role as pre-health adviser, he was able to get four medical school students to talk to the high school group.
“It was a great experience,” he said. “The med school students love doing stuff like this.”
As a former student affairs officer, Measor’s passion is mentoring students, and his dual roles have expanded his opportunities for interaction.
He’s especially excited about a new project that was created because of his connection to the UWSOM-GU partnership.
Before entering medical school, students are required to job-shadow a physician. Students from rural or underserved areas can have a hard time connecting with physicians.
“Because I have the resource of working with the medical school and GU, there’s access to medical faculty who can help develop a rural shadowing program,” said Measor. “This partnership has enabled us do more things to help undergrads.”
His dual roles did present a dilemma recently when the UW and GU basketball teams played against each other.
“Some of the faculty talked about getting UW and GU shirts, cutting them in half and sewing them together before the game, but none of us sews,” he said. “That’s OK because it would be the ugliest shirt in the world!”
With a solid foundation in place, the two universities are leveraging their strengths and momentum to support the success of students, and Measor is thrilled to see how UW students are enjoying Gonzaga’s campus.
“The students haven’t waited for us to figure everything out,” Measor said. “The UW students have full access to everything GU students have, so I’ll see med school students hanging out at Hemmingson and participating on intramural teams. They’ve plunged right in.”
For him that's a sign of how the partnership has blossomed.
“It’s not just about academics, but about all these peripheral opportunities to help our students,” he said. “This blending of resources benefits all students and gives them the best education possible. And having undergrads and medical school students work together is beneficial to the community, as well.”