Baylor president, CEO and executive dean Dr. Paul Klotman recently told an assembly of more than 200 people that he fully expected one of them to have his job in the future. He wasn’t speaking to faculty members or even medical students but rather the inaugural graduates of the Baylor College of Medicine Academy at Ryan.Ryan is a magnet middle school started through an affiliation agreement between the Houston Independent School District and Baylor College of Medicine in 2013. The event brought the 8th grade students full-circle to when they met Klotman in 2013 during their first visit to the Baylor campus. This time, they showed him what projects they had been working on, including experiments with different types of sunscreen, understanding different parts of the brain, extracting DNA from cornmeal and using 3D printers to explore the thoracic cavity.
After this, Klotman spoke to the 8th graders during a special assembly, telling them how proud he and everyone at Baylor College of Medicine is about what they have accomplished so far.
“You’re probably the best prepared middle school kids who are going into sciences in the nation,” said Klotman. “I’m convinced that this experience for you will end up being transformative – it will help you in high school, it will help you in whatever profession you do. I am so proud of you.”
His talk was followed-up by a question and answer session with the students, where they asked him things such as “Did you make perfect grades in middle school?” “Did you always know you wanted to be in medicine?” and “In all these years of working in medicine, what stood out to you the most?”
“This is very historic for us – we will never forget this,” said the school’s principal, Jyoti Malhan, on Klotman’s visit.