Our Approach and Team

The Michigan Center for Interprofessional Education is a coordinating center for IPE and collaborative care efforts at the University of Michigan. By carefully aligning and integrating the needs and interests of health professions education with collaborative practice, we are working to transform the way we prepare U-M students. We achieve our goals through curriculum development, clinical innovation and evaluative research.

Center for IPE Staff:

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Frank Ascione, PharmD, MPH, PhD, Director – Serves as the visionary and strategic leader behind the growing success of interprofessional education across U-M’s 10 health science schools on 3 campuses–and increasingly in collaboration with other U-M schools (law, business, engineering, education, etc.). In 2019, he received the inaugural Interprofessional Educator and Mentor Award from the American Interprofessional Health Collaborative (AIHC). Before becoming the founding director of the Center for IPE, he served as dean of the U-M College of Pharmacy. He earned BS Pharm and PharmD degrees from U-M College of Pharmacy, and MPH and PhD degrees from the U-M School of Public Health.

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Vani Patterson
, MPH, Assistant Director – Oversees the Center for IPE’s day-to-day operations and manages the committees, contracted projects, and campus collaborations that advance the Center’s efforts. Previously, she worked to foster collaborative practice to improve health care in primary and school-based care settings nationally with Michigan Medicine’s Adolescent Health Initiative. She earned an MPH in Environmental Health Sciences and Human Nutrition from U-M School of Public Health.

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Mary Beth Lewis,
BA, Communications Specialist – Manages the Center for IPE’s website content, social media platforms, and public relations. During 18 years at U-M, she expanded the School of Public Health’s digital footprint, managed the School of Nursing’s communications, and co-founded the Health Communicators Forum. She earned a BA in English from Wesleyan University and did foundational coursework in public health.

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Lindsay Telega
, BAA, Senior Administrative Assistant – Coordinates administrative support to the director, staff, and various Center for IPE committees and workgroups, along with implementing and planning IPE activities and events. Before joining U-M, she worked as a human resources assistant for a large automotive corporation. She earned a BAA in business from Central Michigan University.

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Ghaidaa Najjar, PharmD, PhD, IPE Post-Doctoral Research Fellow – Participates in Center for IPE scholarly work and other activities. Ghaidaa earned her PharmD from the U-M College of Pharmacy and has been a community pharmacist for 20 years. In 2018, she completed a PhD in Higher Education Administration with an interest in health sciences education. Her dissertation focused on IPE at U-M, with the title “Faculty and Administrators’ Perceptions about IPE Effective Implementation and Sustainability: A Qualitative Case Study.”

General Inquiries: IPEcenter@umich.edu or 734-764-0696

Learn about the Center for IPE structure.