Over the past several months, I’ve been meeting with and listening to community members across Kansas talk about what they’d like to see from us here at Kansas Health Science Center (KHSC). I’ve met with the Wichita Chamber of Commerce, had conversations with the mayor’s office, discussed business with executives in the community, and developed connections with health care professionals across the state.

I feel energized from these conversations and am looking forward to all the things we can accomplish together. As we continue to get settled here in Wichita, I wanted to share the values that folks want from KHSC as a community partner:

1. Advance innovation.

It’s beyond a buzzword. It’s clear that in Wichita, the organizations that thrive are ones leading the charge with disruptive technology—who are trailblazers no matter the field. Kansas Health Sciences Center is devoted to exploring all the ways medical technology is changing the health care field like telemedicine and being on the forefront of ways that precision medicine and machine learning can enhance future medicine.

2. Impact the community.

Wichita should be a destination for prominent medical solutions. There’s an opportunity to create a place that is world-renowned for the ways that we’re challenging medical conventions and addressing the physician shortage for all of Kansas. We’re up for the challenge.

3. Train future leaders.

We know interpersonal skills are key to great health care professionals, and we learned that in Wichita, you don’t just share a city—you share your lives. KHSC is dedicated to providing training in interpersonal skills. This includes great listening and communication skills to create a well-rounded health professional—the kind of person you want to see and know, whether delivering some news about an illness or watching the Wichita Wingnuts play ball.

4. Integrate mental health treatment.

With a physician shortage and only 120 psychologists in the state, Kansas needs mental health solutions. As a health hub, KHSC seeks to be a valuable partner in helping address mental health problems in the community as well. I plan to address this with a focus on integrated mental and physical health.

5. Invest in Wichita.

Kansans are proud of their state. I am dedicated to digging in and making sure that KHSC students, faculty, and staff are also proud members of Kansas and the Wichita community. This will be a place they build their lives, not just a stop in their trajectory. We will aim to train leaders that want to stay in Kansas for the long haul, not just for their education.