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News for BCM Faculty, May 28, 2020
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Graduation Celebration: Baylor College of Medicine’s Virtual Commencement Ceremony included only a few speakers in person but close to 2,000 students, families and friends watching through livestream. Following an address by President Paul Klotman, 193 students received a medical degree from the School of Medicine, 90 received a doctorate from the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, 11 received a master’s degree from the Graduate School and eight received a master’s degree from the School of Health Professions. Pictured here are Hannah Helber, who gave remarks on behalf of the first graduating class in Genetic Counseling, and Dr. Klotman, demonstrating a socially distant diploma presentation.

Faculty Senate Election Results: Colleagues have elected the following faculty members to represent their department in the Faculty Senate: Dr. Nicolas Young, Biochemistry & Molecular Biology; Dr. Rashmi Rode, Family & Community Medicine; Dr. Muhammad Siddique, Medicine; Dr. Robia Pautler, Molecular Physiology & Biophysics; Dr. J. Biba Nijjar, Obstetrics & Gynecology; Dr. Helen Cohen, Otolaryngology; Dr. Sridevi Devaraj, Pathology & Immunology; Dr. Bruno Chumpitazi and Dr. Geeta Singhal, Pediatrics; Dr. Prathap Jayaram, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation; Dr. Christie Lincoln, Radiology; and Dr. Linda Epner, Surgery.

  • Also elected to the Senate were Dr. Javier Monagas, Children’s Hospital of San Antonio; Dr. Deeba Ashraf, Menninger Clinic; Dr. Sara "Kirsten" Sexson Tejtel, Texas Children’s Hospital; Dr. Allison Clark, TIRR; Dr. Rayne Rouce, Center for Cell & Gene Therapy; Dr. Yi Li, Lester & Sue Smith Breast Center; Claire Horner, Center for Medical Ethics & Health Policy; Dr. Richard Finnell, Center for Precision Environmental Health; Dr. Frederick Pereira, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; and Dr. Kathryn Jones, National School of Tropical Medicine.
  • The second round of elections starts Wednesday, June 3, 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

Dr. Jonnae Atkinson, assistant professor of family & community medicine and faculty senate secretary, is working with the Mary Susan Moore Medical Society to address the impact of COVID-19 on the African American community. The group partnered with Chevron and BakerRipley to create “stay well kits” that they are handing out during food distributions in the Greater Houston area.

Susan Garber, MA, OTR, FAOTA, FACRM, professor of physical medicine & rehabilitation, has received the 2020 Meritorious Service Award from the American Occupational Therapy Foundation. The award honors her sustained and exemplary contributions in support of the foundation's mission to support occupational therapy research and increase public understanding of the important relationship between everyday activities and health.

The Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Equity, led by Associate Provost Toi Harris, has received $150,000 from the Health Research & Services Administration through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act to train students and clinicians on providing telehealth-enabled COVID-19 screening and testing, case management and outpatient care. It also will support programs to maintain primary care away from physical sites, especially for COVID-19 positive, quarantined, elderly and special populations.

Dr. Philip Lupo, associate professor of pediatrics – hematology/oncology, has been selected to serve on the Genetics of Health and Disease Study Section, part of the NIH Center for Scientific Review, for a three-year period beginning July 1. He will review and make recommendations on grant applications submitted to the NIH and survey the status of research in the field.

The American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology has given Dr. Donald Mahoney, professor of pediatrics - hematology/oncology, the George R. Buchanan Lectureship Award. ASPHO recognizes him for his scientific contributions to the field and his outstanding mentorship. The award will be presented at the 2021 ASPHO Conference in Portland, Oregon.

Dr. Salim Virani, professor of medicine, is serving as chair of the Global NCD Academy for the American College of Cardiology, which has launched a new mobile app for frontline health workers in low-resource environments to combat non-communicable diseases. The first course on cardiovascular disease prevention is now available on Google Play, the App Store and via desktop.

Dr. Laurel Williams, associate professor of psychiatry & behavioral sciences, and the Centralized Operation Support Hub, together with the State of Texas, have launched the Child Psychiatry Access Network to provide real-time mental health consultation services to primary care physicians across the state. Clinicians can email CPANinfo@bcm.edu to enroll in the program.

Faculty Resources

Equity Research Summit: Baylor’s third annual Center of Excellence in Health Equity, Training and Research Summer Research Summit is set for Tuesday, June 9. This virtual conference is open to everyone who is committed to workforce diversity in the health and biomedical sciences and quality healthcare for underserved and under-represented populations in the United States. CME credit is available. Register online to livestream the conference.

Fit for the Frontline: Join Baylor in taking the #FitfortheFrontLine challenge to help raise money for healthcare workers! Post any activity dedicated to or in memory of a loved one in the healthcare industry, tag Baylor College of Medicine, include #FitForTheFrontLine and challenge your friends and family to donate and do the same.

COVID-19 Fundraiser: Kendra Scott Jewelry has partnered with the College to support coronavirus research. Shop online June 1-5 using the code GIVEBACK7890 at checkout and 20% of the purchase price will benefit Baylor. More information is available online.

PA Preceptors: The Baylor Physician Assistant Program, which is ranked third in the nation, seeks primary care providers to serve as preceptors for students during two-week rotations throughout the year. Preceptors in pediatrics, family medicine, outpatient internal medicine, psychiatry and obstetrics & gynecology practices are needed. You need not commit to specific dates at this time. Helping to prepare PA students for their future careers is a great way to ensure our exceptional students are ready to take positions in your practice or those of your colleagues. Learn more about what is involved online.

LCME Update: The School of Medicine's May LCME Newsletter features recent subcommittee work and an overview of Element 9.4 – Assessment System, Element 9.7 – Formative Assessment & Feedback and Element 9.8 – Fair & Timely Summative Assessment. The newsletter also contains pertinent information for the site visit Sept. 26-29, 2021.

Diagnostic Excellence: The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation is soliciting novel ideas and approaches for developing new clinical quality measures to improve diagnosis, specifically targeting three major categories of disease: acute vascular events (such as stroke and myocardial infarction), infections (such as sepsis and pneumonia) and cancer (such as lung and colorectal). Grants of up to $500,000 each are available following a multistep competitive process. Eligibility criteria and application information is available online. Apply by June 30.

Alzheimer's RFA: The Alzheimer’s Disease and AD-Related Dementias Collaborative seeks proposals to kick-start or expand cross-institutional research that has a high likelihood of receiving external funding. Up to three awards of a maximum $80,000 each are available for a 12-month period of support. Read the full RFA announcement. For questions, please contact requestforapplications@bcm.edu, referencing Alzheimer’s RFA in the subject line.

From the Labs: Read what Dr. Benjamin Deneen, professor and Russell J. and Marian K. Blattner Chair of neurosurgery, learned about the role of astrocytes in the adult brain 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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