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News for BCM Faculty, May 27, 2021
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College News


Stop Asian Hate Rally: More than 200 faculty, staff and learners from institutions across the Texas Medical Center stood in solidarity with the Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islander community at the Stop Asian Hate Rally May 21. The outdoor event at the Jewish Institute for Medical Research included a moment of silence, guest speakers and personal testimonies. See a list of ways to support AAPI within Baylor College of Medicine and beyond.

COVID Update: Read the new pandemic guidelines for masking and physical distancing that go into effect Tuesday, June 1. To be considered fully vaccinated, Baylor employees and learners must be two weeks post-final dose of vaccine and complete the COVID-19 Vaccine App. Those who do not complete it will be considered unvaccinated. Managers will receive a report of which of their employees and learners have completed the COVID-19 vaccine attestation and will be responsible for monitoring compliance with guidelines. Employees and learners also should accept personal responsibility for following the guidelines according to their vaccination status.

Faculty Senate Election Results: Colleagues have elected the following faculty members to represent their department in the Faculty Senate: Dr. Melissa Nikolaidis and Dr. Nihar Patel, Anesthesiology; Dr. Megan Craddock, Dermatology; Dr. Jimmy Clark, Education Innovation & Technology; Dr. Adedoyin Adesina and Dr. Alison Haddock, Emergency Medicine; Dr. Weiwei Dang, Huffington Center on Aging; Dr. Samaya Anumudu and Dr. RJ Sealock, Medicine; Dr. Rebecca Schwiebert, Molecular Virology & Microbiology; and Dr. Jennifer Stinson and Dr. Arjun Tarakad, Neurology.

  • Also elected to the Senate were Dr. Russell Ray, Neuroscience; Dr. Leah Antoniewicz, Obstetrics & Gynecology; Dr. Benjamin Frankfort, Ophthalmology; Dr. Bruce Moseley, Orthopedic Surgery; Dr. Neda Zarrin-Khameh, Pathology & Immunology; Dr. Aderonke Ojo, Pediatrics; Dr. Hai Le and Dr. Andres Avellaneda Ojeda, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences; Dr. Ghanashyam Archarya, Surgery; and Dr. Chester Koh, Urology.
  • The second round of elections starts Tuesday, June 1, for all faculty members to vote for at-large representatives. Look for an email from the Senate with your link to the ballot. Information about the candidates is online.

Faculty Kudos

image Baylor College of Medicine has been awarded six grants worth more than $17.5 million by the Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) in its latest round of funding. Dr. Jeffrey Rosen, Distinguished Service Professor of molecular & cellular biology and leader of the Breast Cancer Program at the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center, is Principal Investigator for the Comprehensive Cancer Training Program, which received $3,974,082. Dr. Margaret Spitz, professor of medicine, is PI for the Systems Epidemiology for Cancer Training Program, which received $3,593,867. CPRIT also funded three grants in the first-time tenure-track recruitment category, each worth $2 million, and one grant for the recruitment of “rising stars” to Baylor, at $4 million.

Dr. Aimee Gardner, associate professor and assistant dean of evaluation & research in the School of Health Professions, has been elected treasurer of the Association for Surgical Education. She will serve in this and successive officer roles before becoming ASE president in 2025. Gardner is also program chair for the 2022 conference.

Dr. Kalpalatha Guntupalli, the Frances K. Friedman and Oscar Friedman, MD '36 Endowed Professor for Pulmonary Disorders, was one of four Indian American physicians profiled by CNN for their work to help the coronavirus crisis in India from afar. The doctors are advising patients who are ill and raising funds for medical supplies.

Dr. Kenneth Liao, professor of surgery and chief of cardiothoracic transplantation and mechanical circulatory support, recently met a professional milestone. He has performed more than 150 robotic heart surgeries to treat valve and coronary disease since arriving at Texas Heart Institute at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center in 2019.

Dr. James Martin, professor of molecular physiology, received a nearly $700,000 grant from the American Heart Association and nonprofit organization Enduring Hearts for his project "Early Detection of Cardiac Allograft Vasculopathy in Post-transplant Pediatric Hearts via Single-Cell Genomics." This marks the initial funding from these organizations aimed at improving pediatric heart transplant outcomes, part of a $3 million initiative.

image Dr. Michael Scheurer, Dr. Monica Gramatges and Dr. Lisa Kahalley, faculty in pediatrics, received a highly competitive cohort-building grant from the National Cancer Institute to study disparities in childhood cancer survivorship. They will receive approximately $2.1 million over the next two years to understand and address factors related to disparities in adverse outcomes and access to survivorship care, specifically among Latinos.

College Events

Commencement: The in-person event only for degree candidates and speakers starts at 6 p.m. today, May 27, with a livestream for family and mentors. Baylor alumnus Dr. Carl June '79, the Richard W. Vague Professor in Immunotherapy at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, will deliver the commencement address.

Holiday Closing: The College will be closed Monday, May 31, in observance of Memorial Day.

Health Equity Grand Rounds: The Center of Excellence in Health Equity, Training and Research, in collaboration with the offices of Student and Trainee Services and Title IX and Disability Services, hosts Dr. Lisa Meeks, assistant professor of family medicine at University of Michigan School of Medicine, speaking on “Fostering Full Inclusion for Learners with Disabilities” at noon Wednesday, June 2. Register for link.

Compassionate Conversation: “Gender Affirming Language and Allyship: Creating Inclusive Environments in Health Care” is the topic for a Compassionate Conversation for Change, 5 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 2, sponsored by the Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and BCM PRIDE. Register online to join the discussion.

Faculty Opportunities

DeBakey Awards: Nominations are open for the 2021 Michael E. DeBakey M.D. Excellence in Research Awards, given to Baylor faculty who have made the most significant published scientific contribution to clinical or basic biomedical research during the past three years. Online nominations are due by 5 p.m. Friday, June 4.

Admissions Interviewers: Applications are open for the School of Medicine Admissions Interviewing Subcommittees, charged with interviewing and evaluating applicants with varied backgrounds, values, beliefs, interests, experiences and cultural viewpoints to ensure a diverse student body. Faculty members, fellows, residents and Baylor alumni are eligible to apply. See Faculty Opportunities for more information and apply by Friday, June 11.

CTAPS Facilitators: The School of Medicine is soliciting nominations for team-based learning (TBL) facilitators to support the active learning course Critical Thinking and Problem Solving (CTAPS), which is required for all first-year medical students. Innovative faculty members with an interest in learning to integrate metacognition and critical thinking concepts within problem-based learning are encouraged to apply. The TBL facilitator is supported by 10% FTE. See Faculty Opportunities for more details and apply by June 24.

Vaccine Studies: Baylor investigators at the Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit are looking for volunteers who are age 18 and older, with no past history of COVID-19, to participate in vaccine studies. Please call 713-798-4912, email COVID-VAX@bcm.edu or register online to get involved.

  • Volunteers who have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccine can participate in COVID-19 vaccine studies.
  • Volunteers who have received a COVID-19 vaccine can participate in COVID-19 booster vaccine studies.

Faculty Resources

Faculty Survey: Tomorrow, May 28, is the deadline to respond to the AAMC StandPoint Faculty Engagement Survey. If you want to make your voice heard but don’t recall seeing the survey, please search your email for the link to it in a message from StandPointSurveys@aamc.org.

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, June 1, in the Baylor Gym on the 8th floor of Garage 6. Appointments are required and can be made online.

CME Course: Primary Care Now, a Pri-Med virtual conference developed in partnership with Baylor, is June 10 – 11. It includes a keynote address by Dr. Peter Hotez and sessions covering the latest in primary care. Up to 12.50 CME credits are available. Learn more and register.

Autism Webinar: “Independence Is a Process” is the topic of a webinar with Brandi Timmons of Social Motion Skills at noon Friday, June 11, made possible by Spark for Autism. RSVP to view.

From the Labs: Read how Dr. Jason Heaney, associate professor of molecular & human genetics and a DLDCCC member, found that the gene NANOS2 and failed sperm development are linked to testicular cancer 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.

Questions or Comments?

Faculty Senate: Please contact your senator for faculty-related questions or suggestions.

Institutional Policy Committee: Contact the Policy Committee to learn more about College policies and procedures.

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