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Selection Process for the Class of 2022

Revised August 23, 2020

Reviewed by:
Priya Mathew (GHHS Chapter Co-President 2021)
Amy Xia (GHHS Chapter Co-President 2021)
Ashley Wallace (GHHS Chapter Co-President 2020)
Lawrence Wu (GHHS Chapter Co-President 2020)
Shayna Ratner (GHHS Chapter President 2019)
Rakibul Akter (GHHS Chapter Vice President 2019)
Kathryn Squiers (GHHS Chapter President 2018)
Thomas Das (GHHS Chapter Vice President 2018)
Angela Mihalic, M.D. (Dean of Students, Associate Dean for Student Affairs, GHHS Faculty Sponsor)


  • To recognize medical students, residents, and faculty who embody the principle that “The secret of good patient care lies in caring for the patient.”
  • To empower inductees to become role models, leaders, and advocates who inspire and nurture humanism in others.
  • To promote patient-centered medical care at all levels of society, from our UT Southwestern campus to our global community.
  • To be a force for better healthcare for all.


The Gold Humanism Honor Society (GHHS) is a national honor society that was established in 2002 at the request of medical educators and residency program directors. These educators sought to not only identify learners who exemplify patient-centered care, but also develop a community of likeminded individuals who inspired and sustained humanism among health care professionals. The UT Southwestern Medical School GHHS Chapter was established in 2015.

GHHS inductees at UT Southwestern are nominated by their peers as models of integrity, excellence, compassion, altruism, respect, and empathy in patient care; our organization promotes these values on campus with student-led patient outreach efforts, community engagement outside of the health care setting, bolstering of ethics in the formal curriculum, and emphasis of student wellness and faculty mentorship. More information on specific initiatives of the UT Southwestern Chapter can be found at

Selection Process

The following selection process, inspired by the mission of GHHS at UT Southwestern Medical School, was developed in accordance with national GHHS guidelines.


All members of the UT Southwestern Medical School Class of 2022 in good academic standing are eligible for peer nomination to GHHS. Medical student chapters may induct 10-15% of a medical school class, four faculty members, and up to six residents each year.

Exclusion criteria

Students who have had any of the following will not be considered for GHHS selection: professionalism forms, conduct/disciplinary violations.

Evaluation of candidates

  1. Peer nomination
    Selection to GHHS must begin with peer nomination. The UT Southwestern peer nomination form is based on a survey that was developed at the University of Florida and externally validated in a multi-institutional study published by Academic Medicine.1 Peers are asked to identify:
    • Classmates who they would like to have working at their side in a medical emergency.
    • Classmates who best personify the quote, “The secret of good patient care lies in caring for the patient.”
    • Classmates who have shown exceptional interest in service to their communities.
    • Classmates who would be the best choices for highly desired residencies.
    • Classmates who they would want as the doctor for themselves or loved ones.
    • Classmates who have the best listening skills with patients.

    Students may nominate peers whom they have directly observed in patient care roles (including but not limited to the clerkship wards, free clinics, health fairs, advocacy or activism activities, mission trips, Colleges, and summer projects e.g. Camp Sweeney, global health trips). The strongest peer nominations include multiple, specific examples. Students are initially invited to nominate three peers, but they can contact Dr. Angela Mihalic and Holli Holbert if they feel strongly about nominating more peers.

  2. Selection to apply for GHHS
    Peer nomination does not guarantee the opportunity to apply for selection to GHHS. Per GHHS bylaws, no more than 25% of a medical school class may be invited to apply for selection to GHHS. Therefore, peer nomination does NOT guarantee the opportunity to apply. At UT Southwestern, every student who is nominated by one or more peers is evaluated for the opportunity to be one of the 60 students who can apply to GHHS. There is no minimum number of evaluations needed in order to be evaluated. This evaluation includes scrutiny of:
    • Peer nomination comments (see above)
    • Peer evaluation comments collected throughout the year via REDCap
    • Clerkship faculty comments collected throughout the year via MedHub

    The combination of these generates a profile. Each profile is evaluated by all four associate deans for student affairs (Dr. Mihalic, Barker, Sulistio, and Nesbitt). Based on the strength of evaluations, each associate dean assigns a holistic score between 1-5 to every profile. These four scores are averaged to an overall Dean Score, to which the average score from professionalism-related clerkship evaluation questions (Professionalism Score) is added. At this stage, students are ranked by the sum of their Dean Scores and Professionalism Scores, and 25% of the medical school class are subsequently invited to apply for selection to GHHS.

  3. GHHS application
    The final GHHS application includes peer nomination comments, REDCap peer evaluation comments, MedHub faculty evaluation comments, and two components submitted by applicants:

    • Abbreviated CV. This should illustrate a commitment to promoting and nurturing humanism in medicine. Applicants should use their personal judgment as to what this entails (depending on the details, community service, student council, research, activism, advocacy, electives, hobbies, global health activities, etc. could all be applicable). The CV should absolutely exclude college names, GPA, standardized testing scores, and awards and honors.
    • Application essay. The prompt for this essay is: “(1)What does it mean to you to be a humanistic physician? (2) How has this ideal inspired you thus far in your training? Feel free to include examples from both in and outside the hospital. (3) If selected, how would you contribute to spread the values of GHHS to our campus and surrounding community? Please list and explain 2-3 ideas to promote humanism, compassion, and patient centered care. ”. Should indicate not only qualifications, but also willingness to serve as an active member of GHHS during MS4 year and beyond.
  4. Final review
    Final applications are reviewed by three separate members of the GHHS Selection Committee. The GHHS Selection Committee is a group of faculty members from multiple departments, each chosen for their dedication to medical student education and practice of humanistic care. Each evaluator assigns an overall, holistic score between 1-5. The average of these three scores is the Selection Committee Score. Applicants will be initially ranked based on the Selection Committee Score, and the Dean Score and Professionalism Score will be used to guide discussion about selection in the case of a tie in score. The top scores up to 15% of the medical school class will be invited for induction to GHHS.

Example process

  1. Betsy Ross is nominated by 3 peers for selection to GHHS.
  2. Betsy’s peer nomination comments, REDCap peer evaluation comments, and MedHub clerkship faculty evaluation comments are combined to generate an initial profile.
  3. Betsy’s profile is holistically evaluated by the deans for student affairs. Drs. Mihalic and Barker give her a score of 4, and Drs. Sulistio and Nesbitt give her a score of 5. Dean Score is 4.5.
  4. All of Betsy’s professionalism-related clerkship evaluation questions on REDCap are averaged. Professionalism Score is 4.987. Therefore, Betsy’s cumulative score at this stage is 9.487.
  5. Betsy has the 13th highest score of all students nominated by one or more peers. She is invited to apply to GHHS.
  6. Betsy’s final application includes peer nomination comments, REDCap peer evaluation comments, MedHub clerkship faculty evaluation comments, an abbreviated CV, and an application essay.
  7. Betsy’s application is reviewed by three separate members of the GHHS Selection Committee. She receives scores of 3, 5, and 5. Selection Committee Score is 4.3.
  8. If this final score places Betsy in the top 15% of her classmates, she will be inducted into GHHS.


Individuals who nominate themselves for GHHS will be disqualified. Individuals who are found to be campaigning for nomination to GHHS will be disqualified.

Timeline of application process

  • February 17: Students invited to nominate peers to GHHS
  • February 26: Peer nomination forms due
  • March 10: Top 25% of class invited to apply for GHHS
  • March 19: GHHS applications due
  • April 2: Applicants notified of selection to GHHS
  • TBD: Induction of GHHS Class of 2022

Student Officers

After selection to GHHS, all new GHHS members will be invited to apply to be Chapter Co-Presidents. These positions will be selected by a committee of faculty and current GHHS student leaders.

Benefits of GHHS membership

  • Recognition of humanistic achievement
  • Recognition on ERAS residency application form
  • Comparison of data from the 2012 and 2014 Program Director Survey published by the National Resident Matching Service (NRMP): GHHS membership had an increasing influence on the decision to both interview and rank applicants
  • Leadership development opportunities
  • Chapter awards and grants
  • Networking and mentoring connections
  • Professional conferences, lectures, and workshops
  • Resources to promote humanistic care in their community


Gold Humanism Honor Society. “Start a New GHHS Chapter.” The Arnold P. Gold Foundation. <>. Accessed November 27, 2017.

Gold Humanism Honor Society. “Gold Humanism Honor Society.” The Arnold P. Gold Foundation. <>. Accessed November 27, 2017.

Levin R, Cohen J, White L. “Gold Humanism Honor Society membership indicator to be added to ERAS applications beginning with 2016 application cycle.” Journal of Graduate Medical Education 2015; 7(1):136.

McCormack WT, Lazarus MD, Stern D, Small PA. “Peer nomination: A tool for identifying medical student exemplars in clinical competence and caring, evaluated at three medical schools.” Academic Medicine 2007; 82(11):1033-39.

Peabody FW. “The care of the patient.” Journal of the American Medical Association 1927; 88(12):877-882.

Pritzker School of Medicine. “Gold Humanism Honor Society.” The University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.

1 McCormack WT, Lazarus MD, Stern D, Small PA. Peer nomination: A tool for identifying medical student exemplars in clinical competence and caring, evaluated at three medical schools. Academic Medicine 2007; 82(11):1033-39.