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News for BCM Faculty, April 1, 2021
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College News


COVID-19 Updates: Baylor College of Medicine is conducting a COVID-19 prevalence study in Houston, and volunteers are needed to help with recruitment efforts. You'll be asked to volunteer at different locations around town to help recruit participants for the study. Scripts for recruitment will be provided. If you are interested in helping or learning more, contact Merin Thomas.

  • A panel of experts including Drs. Peter Hotez, Pedro Piedra, Jill Weatherhead, Robert Atmar, Hana El Sahly, Prathit Kulkarni and James McDeavitt, reflect on the pandemic year and share what they are optimistic about, as well as their thoughts on travel, herd immunity, variants and more on the Momentum blog.
  • The Gulf Coast Center for Precision Environmental Health (GC-CPEH) and the French Embassy are hosting a virtual COVID-19 Disaster Research and Prevention Symposium May 19. Registration is open now for this free event. Send any questions to GC-CPEH.

Faculty Elections: Applications are now open for seats in the Faculty Senate, with elections scheduled for May and June. With many senators facing term limits, this is your opportunity to get involved with the Faculty Senate and participate in shared governance and strategic planning for the College.

  • You may apply to represent one of the following electoral units with which you are affiliated: Anesthesiology (2 seats), Dermatology, Education Innovation & Technology, Emergency Medicine (2 seats), Huffington Center, Medicine (2 seats), Molecular Virology & Microbiology, Neurology (2 seats), Neuroscience, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Ophthalmology, Orthopedic Surgery, Pathology & Immunology, Pediatrics, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences (2 seats), Surgery and Urology.
  • Or consider running for an at-large faculty position; the Senate particularly encourages those in the basic sciences to apply. Information about the elections and a link to the application form are online.

U.S. News Rankings: The 2021-2022 U.S. News & World Report list of top graduate schools was released March 30. In the research-intensive category, Baylor College of Medicine remains among the top 25 medical schools of the 154 medical schools in the nation at 22nd, and in the primary care category, at 17th. These rankings place Baylor in the top 15% of all U.S. medical schools.

  • The College is ranked nationally in all eight specialty programs: Pediatrics, 7th; Surgery, 13th; Psychiatry, 17th; Radiology, 18th; Family Medicine, 19th; Obstetrics & Gynecology, 19th; Anesthesiology, 21st; and Internal Medicine, 25th. U.S. News did not conduct new surveys for Baylor’s other degree-granting programs. The Graduate School stays ranked 26th in the biological sciences, the School of Health Professions nurse anesthesia program is second and the physician assistant program is third.
  • New this year is the category of most diverse medical schools; Baylor ranked 56th.

Faculty Kudos

image Katherine Erdman, MPAS, PA-C, is stepping down as program director of the Master of Science degree program in Physician Assistant Studies, effective July 1. She will fill a new position as senior associate director to advise on curriculum and innovation and return to teaching and advising students. Elizabeth Elliott, M.S., PA-C, associate professor of health professions and pediatrics and a faculty senator, will succeed her as program director. A graduate of the PA program, Elliott currently serves as associate director of the didactic curriculum.

Dr. Edgardo Ordonez, assistant professor of emergency medicine, has been named president-elect of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine Academy for Diversity and Inclusion in EM. He will serve as a leader in its executive committee for the next three years.

Women of Excellence: Baylor honored faculty, staff and trainees as Women of Excellence and Allies for leadership, mentorship and commitment to academic medicine during Women’s History Month in March. The Women of Excellence Program was developed in 2018 by the Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. This year’s virtual ceremony featured a panel discussion in memory of Dr. Peg Nosek, professor of physical medicine & rehabilitation, and recognized all award recipients.

Taub & Alexander Awardees: The Henry J.N. Taub & James K. Alexander Medical Student Research Symposium 2021 was held virtually March 25. The 66 poster presentations are still open to watch on Voicethread. The top scoring posters in each category received the Henry J.N. Taub Young Investigator Award. Congratulations to the winners and their mentors!

College (Virtual) Events

Blood Drive: Get a free COVID-19 antibody test when you donate blood at Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center’s drive, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 6, in the BCM Gym on the 8th floor of Garage 6. Appointments are required and can be made online.

CVRI Symposium: Dr. Alan Daugherty, director of the Saha Cardiovascular Research Center at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine, delivers the keynote address on “Aortic Heterogeneity as the Basis of Aortopathies” at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, the first day of the 8th Annual Cardiovascular Research Institute Symposium. More information and free registration are available online.

Pain Conference: Texas Pain Research Highlights 2021 starts Wednesday, April 7, and features a keynote speech on “NIH’s HEAL Initiative in Pain Science” by Dr Walter Koroshetz, director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, at 10 a.m. Thursday, April 8. Register online for this Gulf Coast Consortia-sponsored event.

Faculty Opportunities

Health Policy: Abstracts for Health & Science Policy Research Day will be accepted through Wednesday, April 7. The May 4 virtual event looks at how the pandemic has affected healthcare partnerships and what lies ahead. It includes a keynote talk with Adm. Brett Giroir, M.D., former assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

PPS Director: The School of Medicine seeks an innovative clinical faculty member to serve as course director for the Patient, Physician and Society I/II course for first-year students. This is a year-long, required course focused on introductory history gathering, physical exam and communication skills in ambulatory care patient encounters and non-pathological physical exam findings. The position comes with 30% FTE support. See Faculty Opportunities online for more information and apply by April 12.

SWPDC Grants: Pediatric Device Seed Grant Awards are now open for submissions by Baylor faculty members. The Southwest National Pediatric Device Innovation Consortium supports this program to promote the innovation and development of devices specifically designed for children. Four awards of $25,000 each are available for use in fiscal year 2022. Please see the application form and FAQs for more information and submit your materials by 5 p.m. April 16.

Mock Interviewers: Volunteers are needed to conduct virtual mock admissions interviews with students from diverse backgrounds, including underrepresented, first-generation, non-traditional, and sexual orientation and gender minority groups during the Sixth Annual Diversity Admissions Symposium April 17. The event supports and encourages these students to pursue medical, health professions or biomedical sciences careers. Email to volunteer your time.

Faculty Resources

AAPI Solidarity: In response to the increase in hatred and violence toward Asian Americans and those of Asian and Pacific Islander identity, descent and appearance, the Association for Graduate Student Diversity, Diversity Ambassadors and the Inclusion and Equity Council have compiled a list of resources to support AAPI within the Baylor community and beyond.

Big Data Tool: Training on the EPIC SlicerDicer data analytics tool is available at noon Friday, April 2, via Zoom, passcode: 434175, with additional dates in April. The one-hour session is geared to clinicians and researchers with access to BCM EPIC who are interested in using clinical data to address questions that arise in their work. Read more about the tool and the training online.

MS Teams: Are you aware of a collaboration tool that is available for use? Microsoft Teams is an online collaboration workspace that brings together instant messaging, threaded conversations, meetings, audio and/or video calls, desktop and file sharing and Office 365 apps. The Office of Information Technology hosts training sessions on MS Teams Wednesday and Thursday, April 7-8; register online.

Off Script: “Stories from the Heart of Medicine,” Baylor’s Narrative Medicine Program and UT Health’s McGovern Center for Humanities and Ethics storytelling event, is back with tales on the theme of Family at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 8, via Zoom. Register to attend.

Education Grand Rounds: Learn how the Baylor peer coaching program helps facilitate self-improvement through guided reflection and feedback at a presentation by Dr. Sandra Haudek at noon April 22, via Zoom, password: 865864, sponsored by the School of Health Professions and the Faculty Development Office.

Girls Elevated: Don't miss Girls Elevated 2021 on April 24! This event arms teens, tweens and their caregivers with expert advice to help navigate the changes and challenges associated with growing up. Register online.

The TMC Library has 50 subject-specific collections in its discovery portal, One Search, designed to make it easier for users to see ebooks and ejournals at a glance. While still a work in progress, Collection Highlights provide a substantial index of the library's subscription ebooks and ejournals, broken out by subject. Searching on a particular subject discipline in One Search, users may see a hyperlink that will take them to the collected resources for that discipline. Read more library updates online.

From the Labs: Read how the lab of Dr. Anthony Maresso, associate professor of molecular virology & microbiology and a faculty senator, is using phages to prevent bacterial infection in the gut before it starts in this week’s post. Receive From the Labs via email by entering your email address in the box at the end of any article and clicking the "subscribe" button.

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