S. Edwards Dismuke, dean of the Kansas University School of Medicine-Wichita, announced Friday he is resigning effective Sept. 10.
During a faculty meeting, Dismuke said he was going to focus on teaching.
"For a number of reasons, it has become clear to me that it is time now for me to step aside as your dean," he told faculty. "My perception is that I have brought us to a point in our history where we can really move to the next level of excellence as a model for academic medicine at a regional campus."
Dismuke will continue to act as a professor in the departments of preventative medicine and public health and internal medicine, where he will work with medical students and residents.
Dismuke cited several reasons for stepping down.
"I haven't been able to spend as much time as I would like with my family," he said. "Professionally, I miss working at the faculty level - teaching students, doing research and seeing patients."
Dismuke told faculty that the recent death of Doren Fredrickson, a School of Medicine professor who died Aug. 21 at age 53, helped motivate his return to teaching.
Barbara Atkinson, executive dean of the school and vice chancellor of clinical affairs, thanked Dismuke for the seven years he spent as dean.
"On behalf of the hundreds of students and physicians who have trained in Wichita, I want to thank Ed for his many years of service as dean," Atkinson said in a statement. "I want to especially thank him for his leadership as we overhauled our medical school curriculum."
The school will conduct a national search for a new dean. Atkinson said it was especially important to find a qualified dean who could help combat the physician shortage facing Kansas.
KUMC spokeswoman Amy Jordan Wooden said there was no set timeline for the search.
Fred Chang, professor emeritus of surgery, will act as interim dean during the search. In the past, Chang has served as associate dean for graduate medical education and associate dean for academic affairs.