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Administration and steering committee

Gordon L. Archer, M.D.Ross Mikkelsen, Ph.D.
Program director

Ross Mikkelsen, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology in the Massey Cancer Center. Mikkelsen has a 25-year record of NIH funding and research productivity in radiation biology including recent seminal observations in radiation–induced structural changes in proteins. In addition, he has been a member of the Medical School Admissions Committee since 1992, and since 1998, has been one of only two members of the committee who interview M.D.-Ph.D. applicants.

Ross Mikkelsen, Ph.D.Charles Clevenger, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate director

Professor and Chair, Department of Pathology. Dr. Clevenger came to the VCU School of Medicine in 2013 from Northwestern University School of Medicine where he was actively involved with their MSTP MD-PhD Program for 8 years. His research is in cancer biology and he has been continuously NIH funded for more than 23 years.


Ross Mikkelsen, Ph.D.Clive Baumgarten, Ph.D.
Associate director

Professor of Physiology and Biophysics. Dr. Baumgarten has been an active research scientist in the VCU School of Medicine for more than 25 years where he has also been heavily involved with teaching physiology to medical and graduate students. He is currently the Director of the Physiology block of the medical school curriculum and has been on the MD-PhD Program Steering Committee for 13 years. He is the also the Director of all MD-PhD-specific courses and seminars.

Assistant directors:

Louis DeFelice, Ph.D., is the associate dean for Graduate Affairs and was involved in the graduate and M.D.-Ph.D. programs at the Vanderbilt School of Medicine before joining the VCU School of Medicine faculty.

Gordon Archer, M.D., - Profesor Emeritus of Internal Medicine and Microbiology/Immunology and former Director of the M.D.-Ph.D. Program. Coordinator of M.D.-Ph.D. clinical programs.

Administrative structure

  • The core responsibilities reside with the program directors, the associate and assistant directors and the administrator, Sandra Sorrell.
  • Advice and approval of all major decisions on student admission and dismissal or changes in program structure are referred to the program steering committee.
  • The steering committee is composed of the following faculty:
  • A member of the steering committee is always involved, with a current student from the program, in conducting one of the two interviews of prospective students.
  • The M.D.-Ph.D. students elect student presidents each year from the rising second year graduate class. The presidenst are responsible, with the advice and consent of the director, for choosing seminar speakers and organizing the yearly retreat. The G1 student class assists the presidents in seminar choice and organization, while the G2 class assists with the retreat.