Professorship Honors a Living Legend

Professorship Honors a Living Legend

Before the School of Medicine had its own place to call home, Bernell Dalley was making an impact on future health care providers.

Written by Suzanna Cisneros

Dalley and Lee have both been recognized as outstanding anatomy professors in the School of Medicine.

Dalley and Lee have both been recognized as outstanding anatomy professors in the School of Medicine.

Longtime School of Medicine educator Bernell Dalley’s passion for teaching will live on with the naming of the Dr. Bernell Dalley Endowed Professorship in Medical Education and its first recipient, Vaughan H. Lee, Ph.D.

Steven L. Berk, M.D., executive vice president and provost and dean of the School of Medicine, said the new professorship is a lasting memorial to an individual, his dedication to the medical profession and his contributions to the community and students he has educated.

“Dr. Dalley is professor, mentor and trusted advocate,” Berk said. “His teaching has earned him personal respect and admiration from his colleagues and the more than 3,000 students he has taught and encouraged for more than 35 years. He leaves a wonderful legacy for our medical students and institution.”

Dalley graduated from Brigham Young University with his Master of Science degree in 1970. He came to the newly established School of Medicine in 1974 with a plan to be on faculty for five years. When he arrived in Lubbock, the School of Medicine was housed at Drane Hall on the Texas Tech campus and there were only 40 medical students enrolled.

Throughout his years at the university, he has served as an associate professor of cell biology and anatomy, graduate faculty and associate dean of the Office of Admissions and Minority Affairs. He was the chair of the Joint Admissions to the Medicine Program Council for the State of Texas and was a member of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education Steering Committee.

Dalley has received numerous awards including the John Aure Buesseler Memorial Award in 2008, which he was voted for by graduating students. The 2012 School of Medicine class is the last Dalley recruited.

As the first recipient of the professorship, Lee will continue Dalley’s legacy as an outstanding anatomy educator. He has been the recipient of multiple teaching awards and is recognized for his excellence in teaching anatomy both by peers and medical students. His most significant contribution to medical education has been the restructuring of the university’s anatomy course into a nationally recognized interactive, problem-solving format.

Lee has served as an associate professor in the Department of Cell Biology & Biochemistry since 2001.


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Department of Cell Biology & Biochemistry
brain cells

The Department of Cell Biology & Biochemistry offers Ph.D. and Master of Science degrees in biochemistry and molecular genetics or cell and molecular biology, and Master of Science degrees in anatomy.

Graduate research in the department gives students the opportunity to study with faculty members actively investigating a variety of research interests.

School of Medicine
School of Medicine

Since 1969, the School of Medicine has graduated more than 3,000 physicians. The school aims to provide quality lab space, recruit creative, innovative research faculty, and develop graduate students and postdoctoral fellows for lifelong careers in medical research.

Today, more than 20 percent of the practicing physicians in West Texas have graduated from the School of Medicine or its residency programs.