Last week, we had the yearly dialogue with the Ministry for Higher Education. Among many important topics, the Vice-chancellor has the opportunity to present the success factors and challenges of the university. As the most important success factor I highlighted that KI is needed! We perform research in areas with large national and global societal challenges. We educate students for sectors where there is a large need for competent employees and we have a unique role in the Swedish Life Science landscape as an internationally leading medical university. A related success factor is that we are part of a Life Science Cluster with world leading ambitions.
Moving on into the future
My message to the ministry is, use KI to educate students, to solve important research questions, as experts within our areas of expertise and to promote the life science cluster! A final but equally important success factor is that I believe that there is strong support in our organization to move on into the future, with important new insights and experiences, and to build future success on high quality throughout our operations. My message to the ministry is that they can assist us by providing a (regulatory) framework that supports high quality in education and research.
For the challenges, I discussed the future health care landscape in Stockholm, KI’s infrastructural journey and our organization. Challenges that I have discussed on my blog before and the Chairman Mikael Odenberg have also highlighted this on his blog. One important topic that was discussed is the expansion of higher education that was initiated in 2015-2106. KI was tasked to increase nursing education, specialist nursing education and the education of midwives.
Our expansion has been limited by lack of clinical placements, something that is unfortunately to a large extent is out of our own hands. To solve this, we have to work in collaboration with the Stockholm County Council. We have a mutual interest in finding good solutions, our present students are their future employees. Another important challenge is to decrease the drop out from the study programme in nursing. We need to make sure more students complete their studies.
Coherent knowledge environments
Under the topic “Connection between research and education”, we were asked to provide examples of coherent knowledge environments. I believe that the Academic Specialist Centra that we now see developing is one example of such a coherent knowledge environment. Starting up in areas of rheumatology, neurology and diabetes we really hope that this will be a success concept soon adding other diagnosis.
The final part of an education at KI is the degree ceremonies. My great thanks to everyone involved in making these happy and memorable events, the unit for academic ceremonies, the ushers, the technical staff and of course not least our new colleagues that used to be our students.