Voices of Experience
Stanley Schrier, MD
Are there factors that played into your decision to retire that you would be willing to identify?
"I retired and became emeritus on September 1, 1999 so I could that I could start withdrawing from my retirement savings, but mainly I wanted to withdraw from administrative duties. Shortly after that I was recalled to duty. "
Are there issues specific to being a clinical faculty member that affect the retirement decision?
"If you can keep your clinical skills going and become useful to your department, then that is a plus."
What activities are you engaged in now? Are there new opportunities or activities you have pursued since becoming emeritus?
"I'm probably busier now than I was when I was retired. Now I see patients, do research and teach. Also I've just received two new grants. I changed from being a ‘lab rat' to becoming a clinical investigator – something I thought I'd never do. At a certain point it became apparent that I wouldn't be able to get grants for my basic lab research , so I switched gears. Now I draw upon my clinical experience to obtain funding for both my clinical and research activities. I just became consortium chair of a project on Anemia of the Elderly which means my job is to oversee eight institutions and make sure the intellectual aims of the consortium are achieved."
Lessons learned about the retirement process: what advice would you give to those considering retirement? Is there anything you didn't know that you wish you had known?
It pays to plan ahead. "Years ago my wife and I met with an on-campus advisor who went over how to handle medical issues in retirement. That was useful, and is still useful. Years ago I hired a financial counselor. Because of this I am financially secure."
Take time out to imagine the future. A few years before I retired, I went on a sabbatical to Thailand and Italy, where I had ongoing research projects. My sabbatical gave me time to do research and time to think productively. I recall taking walks with my wife along the boardwalk discussing how I would continue my research and clinical work beyond retirement."
Interviewed on 4/10/09 by Kristin Goldthorpe, Dean's Office