VTC Medical School Formally Establishes Department of Neurosurgery

With the approval of the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine (VTCSOM) has established a Department of Neurosurgery. The new department will enhance the neurosurgical education for medical students while serving the communities of the Roanoke and the New River valleys.

“We warmly welcome neurosurgery as the 12th academic department at VTCSOM. This important evolution for the school was supported by the expansion of Carilion Clinic’s program to include expert neurosurgeons in a wide range of subspecialty areas,” said Lee Learman, dean of the school. “The formation of a separate department with a renowned department chair is an advancement that will help grow neurosurgery’s academic program and student career interest.”

With the formation of the Department of Neurosurgery, the school has named John Jane Jr. as its inaugural chair. Jane is also the new chair of Carilion Clinic’s Department of Neurosurgery.

He developed a reputation for excellence at UVA Health, where he specialized in the treatment of pituitary tumors and minimally invasive techniques to the brain.

“The affiliation with the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and the ability to train the next generation of medical students was incredibly appealing to me,” Jane said. “The hospital system at Carilion Clinic is run by a very engaged team with a view towards providing excellent patient care and growing as a leading provider not just in Roanoke and the surrounding communities, but also regionally. This partnership was an essential reason I decided to come to Roanoke.”

Jane has written extensively on the treatment and outcomes after pituitary surgery and has earned an international reputation. Over the course of his career, he has held many leadership positions including director of Pediatric Neurosurgery, director of pituitary surgery, outpatient medical director of Neurosurgery, and residency program director. He has also served on the editorial board of the Journal of Neurosurgery and was president of the Neurosurgical Societies of the Virginias.

“It is a demanding field that requires dedication to the patient along with lifelong learning and honing of skills,” Jane said. “In many ways, we are entrusted with holding a person’s life in our hands when we are performing complex cranial operations. Our ability to restore function and help people is a tremendous responsibility and a tremendous honor.”

Medical students will now have new avenues to focus on neurosurgery in their research, a major point of emphasis in the school’s curriculum. All students are expected to a conduct an original, hypothesis-driven research project over the span of the four years they are at the school.

“I see my role as chair is to help leverage the excellent clinical care that’s provided at Carilion, the sub-speciality care that provided by the neurosurgery department, and to help enhance the affiliation with the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC,” Jane said. “The research projects and collaborations that are ongoing and expanding will benefit our faculty, students and the community.”

  • Josh Meyer

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