The School of Medicine recognized Rose Zwerenz, M.D., ’82, as recipient of this year’s Outstanding Years 1 and 2 Docent on Aug. 7 during the annual White Coat Ceremony for new third-year students.
An associate professor in the Department of Community and Family Medicine and the school’s assistant dean for pre-doctoral education, Zwerenz has served as a docent for first and second-year students for 28 years.
Zwerenz was unable to attend the White Coat Ceremony and receive the award in person. But in prepared marks read to her students, she applauded their performance throughout their first two years of medical school and their dedication to medicine.
“In spite of sleepless nights and countless hours of intense studying, you have learned about yourself. You are learning the importance of a strong work-life balance, stress management, self care and the value of a strong network of friends and family,” Zwerenz wrote. “You have learned about others. You have learned about the importance of good communication skills in the patient-centered environment as well as with your peers. And, you are learning the values, the ethics, and the moral code for becoming a physician. Through all of this, you have kept your vision in sight. “
Known as “Dr. Rose” by her students, who chose her for the award, Zwerenz is a Kansas native who crossed the border to attend undergraduate and medical school at UMKC. She served her family medicine residency at Truman Medical Center Lakewood, where she was a chief resident.
She practiced the full scope of family medicine in the department’s rural office prior to returning to the main TMC Lakewood campus to develop the medical student education program for the School of Medicine.
As pre-doctoral director, she has worked with and mentored a large number of students throughout her career, sharing her enthusiasm and appreciation for family medicine with students beginning their academic careers in medicine. She has also played a significant role in the growth and maturity of the Community and Family Medicine Residency program, teaching and mentoring a majority of the program’s graduates.