ALUMNI NEWS | A New Adventure for Former UMMC Program Administrator Bobbi Kruse
Bobbi Kruse, UMN Medical Center Family Medicine Residency Program (UMMC)'s former program administrator, has traded in her snow shovel for sunglasses by leaving behind Minnesota for the San Bernardino Valley in California for a new role with Prime Healthcare. Bobbi has been an incredible leader for the past decade in her position at UMMC/Smiley's clinic, and she will be greatly missed.
Bobbi's time at the university was only ever meant to be short-term. She began in 2006 as a temporary employee in an administrative role. But that wasn't her first introduction to Smiley's.
"I was a patient of Smiley's almost 31 years ago when I was pregnant with my son," she says. "And my son was delivered by one of our graduates at the university hospital, who now works in the ED."
Over those six weeks in her temporary position, Bobbi didn't think she would stay—but the people won her over. She formally applied for the position, got the job, and worked for more than four years as an administrative coordinator. After that, she moved on to accept the UMN Medical Center program administrator role. All in all, July 2021 would have marked 15 years at the University for Bobbi.
"It feels amazing to say that I loved it enough to stay all these years," she says. "We have wonderful people in our program."
She made the decision to move on when she realized that she had reached a different stage in life: "My thinking process was that I would be smart to find a position in a place that I wanted to retire in; a place where I could work, learn new specialties, and get to know people in my community. Then, when I retired, I would already have my community in place."
"Somebody sent me the quote, 'When you're sitting still, you're not growing,' and I replied that I think I'm jumping without looking down!"
Bobbi will be practicing her plentiful skills in her new role as family medicine program manager at Prime Healthcare, whose mission statement is "saving hospitals, saving jobs, saving lives." She will also help the organization expand their graduate medical education footprint in the western U.S. region.
As Bobbi transitions to a new part of her life, she plans to keep UMMC/Smiley's close to her heart.
"The people are what make this program so wonderful," she says. "I'm really going to miss my residents. I've maintained contact with my alumni and re-established that contact over the last couple of years. I've watched them mature and grow as residents, and I will miss that a lot."
She is grateful for the people she has worked with—colleagues and mentees alike—and all the opportunities she has been given while at the University.
"Thank you for giving me the latitude to explore this position in a lot of different ways," she says. "Serving on the Association of Family Medicine Administration board was one of the highlights of my time here. Thanks for giving me that open road to be able to discover new ways to get involved."
In June 2021, the UMMC family medicine residency program welcomed Carol Nguyen as its new program administrator. We are thrilled to have her on board! Carol comes to us from Los Angeles, California, where she was residency program administrator for the family medicine residency program at Dignity Health California Hospital Medical Center in Downtown Los Angeles. Before that, she had roles as the medical student coordinator and assistant residency coordinator for pediatrics at UCLA Health.