Archive for October, 2017

Update on Recycling Efforts at UMB

There have been questions regarding the status of the Recycling Program at UMB, so here is an update on our efforts.

Recycling of many materials has continued uninterrupted throughout the construction activities at the north end of campus, but some recycling operations were suspended for a time. Construction of the Electrical Peaking Plant behind the Recycling Center on Saratoga Street disrupted access to the large shredding and baling equipment required to recycle high volumes of paper and cardboard, so recycling of those materials was disrupted starting in April 2017. However, recycling of paper and cardboard resumed during the first week of October. Recycling of compostable animal bedding also was disrupted for the same reasons, and this will be resumed by the end of October. Recycling of the following materials has continued without interruption:

  • Glass/metal/plastics (bottles and cans)
  • Batteries/ink cartridges
  • Fluorescent lamps
  • Electronics
  • Confidential documents to be shredded
  • Scrap metal

Sometime next year, the Recycling Center will be demolished to make room for a new building that will house a new Master Electrical Switching Station and a new Recycling Center. At that time, recycling of paper, cardboard, and compostable animal bedding will again be interrupted until construction is completed, a period of about one year.

Recycling at UMB is dual stream, which means cardboard and paper products are recycled separately from plastics, glass, and metal. Both of these types of recycling should be discarded in the waist-high blue containers located in common areas. These containers are labeled by which type of recycling they are intended for, and plastics/glass/metal containers also will have a plastic liner for containing small amounts of liquid. The Recycling Program also provides blue grocery baskets for recycling paper at your desk, and these are available by request (ext. 6-7570).

Paper can be any color, and we can recycle journals, newspaper, and frozen food boxes. We also recycle confidential documents from various departments by using large, slot-top carts that are exchanged upon request.

We cannot recycle most glass found in the labs, and we cannot recycle Styrofoam, plastic bags, or shrink wrap, but we can recycle most other commonly found plastic, glass, or metal. This includes soda cans and bottles, jelly jars, soup cans, aluminum foil, and the small plastic pipette tip holder boxes found in the labs.

Batteries, ink cartridges, and small electronics can be placed in the small blue buckets found in common areas. These are collected upon request as the buckets are filled.

Old electronics and lab equipment also can be recycled upon request, but an Excess Property Declaration form is required, and that can be downloaded here.

In other cases, we recycle large pieces of metal or metallic equipment as bulk scrap.

Fluorescent lamps also can be recycled. They are collected after they burn out and are shipped to a facility that captures the mercury in the bulbs before recycling the glass.

We hope you are excited and ready to participate! If you have questions or concerns, please contact the Operations and Maintenance service center at 410-706-7570. You also can find additional information on recycling and other sustainability efforts at the UMB Go Green website.

— Terence Morse, MS, Interim Associate Vice President, Facilities and Operations

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Terence Morse Collaboration, Education, People, University LifeOctober 19, 20170 comments
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Online Security Awareness: Watch Out for Phishing Attempts

Phishing is a method of obtaining sensitive information, such as usernames and passwords, Social Security numbers, and banking information, for malicious reasons by disguising an electronic communication as coming from a trustworthy person or organization. The malicious person “fishes” for a victim to perform an action by “baiting” the victim with what appears like a legitimate and trustworthy email or instant message. The victim often is directed to enter their information into a fake website that looks identical to a legitimate one. Communications purporting to be from social media websites, auction sites, banks, online payment processors, or information technology administrators are often used to lure victims. Phishing emails may contain links to websites that are infected with malware.

The best way to protect yourself, your family, and the University is to make sure everyone is aware of what phishing attempts look like. Generally, phishing attempts implement social engineering and fear tactics  to get you to become a victim. Also, if the offer seems too good to be true, it probably is. You always should thoroughly examine any email asking for confidential information, especially of a financial nature. Many phishing scams have obvious signs of fraud such as poor spelling or grammar. And, lastly, if you are unsure about a message, try calling the sender or visiting its website without clicking on links or attachments in the message by searching for it online or typing its website directly into your browser. Never reply to the phishing attempt, as you would be confirming to the criminal that your email address is valid and you are reading your messages.

If you think an email or instant message on your work computer is a phishing attempt, you should notify Campus Security and Compliance at security-compliance@umaryland.edu and/or your school/departmental IT staff. You may not be the only one to receive the phishing attempt, and sharing with others may stop them from falling victim. Also, you can forward suspected spam emails to DL-CITSReportSpam@umaryland.edu.

If you have become a victim and disclosed your username or password, immediately contact Campus Security and Compliance at security-compliance@umaryland.edu so that we can disable your account to prevent unauthorized account access. Acting quickly could stop the criminals before they have a chance to hijack your account.

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Fred Smith Technology, University LifeOctober 19, 20170 comments
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UMB Snap! Photo Contest: Submission Deadline Approaching

Here is your chance to have your best photos displayed for all to see in the Fireplace Lounge in the SMC Campus Center. This year’s first-place winner also will receive a $25 gift certificate redeemable for store credit at the UMB Seven Scholars University Store!

The contest is open to UMB faculty, staff, and students; BioPark employees; and UMMC employees.

Online submissions will be accepted from now until Oct. 31, 2017. Don’t delay!

SUBMIT YOUR PHOTOS NOW!

2017 contest theme: UMB, Baltimore, and Beyond

Do you have inspiring images of the UMB campus? How about a great snapshot from your summer vacation? Photos of life in Baltimore? Pics of your pet? We want your photos of the campus, the city, and the entire world. Send them in!

Note: Photos of patients, or any photos taken in health care facilities, are not allowed.

Photos will be accepted in two camera formats:

Traditional

Higher quality, high-resolution photos, usually taken with a regular camera. Images may be in any format (square or rectilinear), but final dimensions must be no larger than 16″ x 20″ for the final print. Resolution must be no less than 150 pixels per inch (ppi). File size must be no greater than 10 megabytes.

Fun

Lower-resolution photos, such as those taken with standard cellphones. Images may be in any format (square or rectilinear), but final dimensions must be no larger than 16″ x 20″ for the final print. Resolution must be no less than 150 pixels per inch (ppi). File size must be no greater than 10 megabytes.

Find out more

Please see the contest rules at the Snap! website for details on the formats and for other information. Model releases are required for photos of people in some instances.

For more information about the Snap! UMB Photo Contest 2017, email Stephen Bossom.

Good luck to all participants!

  
Stephen BossomBulletin Board, Contests, People, University Life, USGAOctober 19, 20170 comments
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Fall Local Food Fair Set for Nov. 20 at BioPark

University of Maryland, Baltimore employees responsible for catering services on behalf of their department are invited to a Local Food Connection Food Fair on Nov. 20 from noon to 1:30 p.m.

The Local Food Connection is a program led by UMB’s Office of Community Engagement that works to support the economy of neighboring communities in West Baltimore by using institutional purchasing power. Small but frequent catering purchases are an ideal way to build reliable revenue streams that help neighborhoods retain food businesses that hire local workers, improve local properties, and make food available to community members.

Those attending the Food Fair will be able to:

  • Sample free food.
  • Learn about local businesses that provide catering services.
  • Collect menus and coupons for their next event (while supplies last).
  • Support businesses in Southwest Baltimore.

The event will be held at the UM BioPark, 801 W. Baltimore St., in the Conference Center.

  
Colin Smith Bulletin Board, Collaboration, University Life, USGAOctober 18, 20170 comments
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Sentinel Study Seeking Volunteers

In October, we focus on women’s health, and, in light of that, consider being part of a study.

Did you know that microbes residing in the vagina are critical to women’s reproductive health and play a key role in preventing disease that can lead to infertility and cancer?

Be a part of the Sentinel Study, co-led by Associate Professor Mary Regan, PhD, RN, which will help researchers understand how the vaginal environment can protect women’s health and subsequently develop interventions.

The Sentinel Study is seeking participants Mondays, 11:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; Tuesdays, 11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; and Wednesdays, noon-1 p.m. Come to the University of Maryland School of Nursing lobby for more information about the study and to participate. Participants will be compensated $20 for completion of the study activities. Call 410-706-3200 for details.

  
Giordana Segneri Bulletin Board, ResearchOctober 18, 20170 comments
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Engaging Hepatitis C Patients to Improve Research Methods

When I joined the School of Pharmacy in 2014, my primary focus was on teaching pharmacy management and developing research skills in the area of economic evaluation. As a faculty member in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS), I enrolled in the PhD in Pharmaceutical Health Services Research (PHSR) program at the school to become a pharmacoeconomist and build cost-effectiveness studies. However, I enrolled into the program at a time when the culture in research was beginning to shift, primarily because of extraordinary PHSR professors who knew that researchers could do a much better job systematically including the patient voice in our work.

Evaluating cost-effectiveness of hepatitis C treatments

Like any other graduate student, I dove into the literature around the new treatments for the hepatitis C virus (HCV). With help from Julia Slejko, PhD, assistant professor in PHSR, and C. Daniel Mullins, PhD, professor and chair of PHSR, I developed my first cost-effectiveness study for HCV treatments, but I fell into the trap of focusing on traditional methods that did not include patients.1 Although it was good experience for me to gain while learning this field, I knew there was much more to do.

Engaging patients to improve methods

After submitting my economic model, I spoke informally with Susan dosReis, BSPharm, PhD, and Eleanor Perfetto, PhD, MS, both professors in PHSR, about the lack of patient input in all of the HCV cost-effectiveness studies that I had reviewed. Without hesitation, Perfetto smiled and said, “There is your next paper.” So, we went to work. We systematically reviewed economic studies for HCV treatments and found that the inclusion of the patient voice has been limited in this area, to say the least.2

Submission to PCORI: It takes a village

One of the key lessons that I’ve learned over the past year is that most good research proposals require a team effort, and all researchers are influenced by the company they keep. With several faculty in the department having success with their contract submissions to the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) – facilitated, in part, by the creation of the PATIENTS Program – a culture of authentic, patient-centered research has weaved throughout the school.

I recently had an opportunity to become the director of operations with the PATIENTS team, where I learned firsthand what it meant to “continuously engage” patients in every step of the research process.3 The natural progression for me was to submit a Pipeline to Proposal (P2P) Tier A award to PCORI, which would fund the work necessary to build relationships with patients in the West Baltimore community where the School of Pharmacy is located. I pitched an idea to leverage the Community Engagement Center at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) to work with underserved patients as advisors to our research to Shyamasundaran Kottilil, MD, PhD, professor of medicine and renowned HCV clinician and researcher at the School of Medicine’s Institute of Human Virology (IHV). He immediately came on board.

With the support of Kottilil; Ashley Valis, executive director for strategic initiatives and community engagement at UMB; and Mullins, as director of the PATIENTS Program, our proposal was created and, fortunately, won over the reviewers at PCORI.

Now the real work begins

In our P2P, we aim to engage underserved HCV patients to inform and improve comparative effectiveness research for HCV interventions. We also plan to develop a blog that will target patients and researchers to disseminate our work in a way that is meaningful to both audiences. We want to bring patients, clinicians, and researchers to the same table to discuss research questions related to HCV treatment that matter most to patients. This multi-stakeholder approach will help us develop another research proposal that might be of interest to funding agencies such as PCORI, the National Institutes of Health, or the Food and Drug Administration. We’re excited to get started and can’t wait to see how the results of our work might impact future studies.

Joey Mattingly, PharmD, MBA, assistant professor in PPS and PHSR graduate student

References

1 Mattingly TJ, Slejko JF, Mullins CD. Hepatitis C Treatment Regimens Are Cost-Effective: But Compared With What? Ann Pharmacother. 2017; online: July 1, 2017. doi:10.1177/1060028017722007.

2 Mattingly TJ, Perfetto EM, Johnson S. Engaging hepatitis C infected patients in cost-effectiveness analyses: A literature review. Hepatology. August 2017. doi:10.1002/hep.29482.

3 Mullins CD, Abdulhalim AM, Lavallee DC. Continuous Patient Engagement in Comparative Effectiveness Research. JAMA. 2012;307(15):1587-1588.

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Joey Mattingly ResearchOctober 18, 20170 comments
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UMBrella Group Sending Two to Women’s Leadership Conference

The UMBrella Group has awarded scholarships to Marianne Gibson, MS, and Emily Lee, MSW, to attend the Association of College Unions International (ACUI) Women’s Leadership Institute conference in Amelia Island, Fla., on Dec. 3 to 6.

Gibson is a program manager in the School of Pharmacy’s Department of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research (PHSR), and Lee is a research and academic affairs strategic administrator at the School of Social Work.

The leadership institute is for women who seek to become leaders in higher education administration. The conference is designed for attendees to hone leadership skills for working in a rapidly changing environment; develop a better understanding of the campus as a workplace and culture; share experiences with others about how campuses are adapting and adjusting to the new reality, and create new personal networks and networking skills to better tap the higher education community.

The UMBrella Group’s missions are to advocate for a culture that embraces flexibility and family-friendly work policies; coach women at all levels of the University; and provide opportunities for women at UMB to connect and engage with a community that supports the success of women.

For more information about the UMBrella Group, check out its web page.

  
sonya evans Education, People, UMB News, University LifeOctober 17, 20170 comments
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School of Pharmacy’s AAPS Chapter Celebrates Start of Semester

By Luke Brewer, PSC Graduate Student and AAPS Vice President for Membership

The American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) student chapter at the School of Pharmacy welcomes incoming and returning students to the 2017 fall semester. Our organization provides students with an opportunity to learn and engage with fellow academics and to interact with leaders who are at the forefront of pharmaceutical sciences. To kick off this semester, we partnered with the Pharmacy Graduate Student Association (PGSA) for a joint AAPS/PGSA Welcome Back Social on Sept. 15 at Health Sciences Facility II.  Students had an opportunity to socialize over food and drinks and learn about AAPS events and leadership opportunities.

Opportunities for involvement

Throughout the year, the AAPS student chapter organizes and sponsors a variety of eventsranging from academic conferences to community outreach. In addition to the recent Welcome Back Social, the chapter participated in the second annual AAPS/Drug Discovery and Development Interface (DDDI) Regional Meeting at the School of Pharmacy on Aug. 4.

The theme for this year’s meeting was “Evolving Strategies for Drug Candidates Optimization in a Changing Pharmaceutical Landscape.” The event featured informative presentations from leaders in the field of pharmaceutical research spanning government, industry, and academia. Among the distinguished speakers delivering presentations were Mike Hageman, PhD, former executive director at Bristol-Myers Squibb; Capt. Edward D. Bashaw, PharmD, director of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology-3 at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; and Joseph Fortunak, PhD, associate professor at Howard University. You can view a complete list of the speakers here.

The meeting attracted attendees from universities and organizations across the region, including AAPS student chapters from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and the University of Maryland,  Eastern Shore. Attendees were encouraged to participate in “speed-networking,” which randomly matched participants to discuss their research and career goals. These quick one-on-one sessions offered a tremendous opportunity for students to network with established pharmaceutical scientists.

The students in attendance were excited to take part in the presentations and the networking events.

“I attended this event for the speakers,” said Brandon Drennen, a graduate student in the PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PSC) program at the School of Pharmacy.  “These individuals are all prestigious scientists who have had an indelible impact in the field.”

Elizabeth Robinson, another graduate student in the PhD in PSC program, said the event offered “a great opportunity to meet successful scientists and receive constructive and useful advice about achieving my career goals.”

“AAPS and DDDI did a great job bringing together speakers and attendees who have a broad range of research interests,” added PSC graduate student Ivie Conlon.

Learn more about our organization

If you are interested in learning more about the AAPS/DDDI regional meeting or other AAPS events,  follow us on Facebook or connect with us on LinkedIn (University of Maryland AAPS Student Chapter). We strive to provide all students with informative and constructive events on a regular basis, and we hope to see you at our future AAPS events.

  
Luke Brewer Education, University Life, USGAOctober 17, 20170 comments
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Immigration Protection: Know Your Rights and Bystander Information

The rescinding of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program initiated a campuswide effort at UMB to provide resources and support not only for DACA recipients and advocates on our campus, but also for the broader Latinx immigrant community being targeted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

ICE recently executed a four-day raid in sanctuary cities around the United States. Nearly 500 people were arrested, including 28 in Maryland. In an attempt to counter ICE’s actions, a Know Your Rights and Bystander Information Session was offered Sept. 27.

Katie Miller, a member of CASA de Maryland, talked about recent policy changes and pending legislation. She also provided a brief overview on how to protect yourself and others during immigration raids, followed by a conversation on how to navigate various scenarios involving ICE.

CASA de Maryland asks that if you witness or hear of a raid and think CASA has not been notified, call 301-431-4185 with all names used by the individuals, alien number, and country of origin. The information also can be emailed to ealex@wearecasa.org and lwalther@wearecasa.org.

Information about DACA and related 2017 legislation can be found online here.

Know Your Rights materials in English, Spanish, and Arabic can be found here.

For more information regarding the Sept. 27 session, Katie Miller can be contacted at kmiller@wearecasa.org.

 

  
Hyoyoung Minna Kim Bulletin BoardOctober 17, 20170 comments
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‘The Grid’ Now Hiring Innovation Fellows

The Grid is now hiring Innovation Fellows.

What is The Grid?
The University’s newest innovation space, The Grid, is designed to support entrepreneurial ventures through education, early stage funding, and programming. It is a place where students, entrepreneurs, faculty, and staff connect to bring innovative health and social impact ideas to life. The space also will be home to educational opportunities such as workshops and programs. A degree program in health and social innovation will allow students to concentrate in areas such as life sciences, user experience, or science communication.

What is an Innovation Fellow?
Innovation fellows are federal work study students interested in working 10 to 20 hours per week. Fellows will:
• Receive and direct incoming calls and visitors.
• Staff the front desk and provide excellent customer service to visitors.
• Provide tours of the facility.
• Assist with coordinating activities, workshops, and events around design thinking, entrepreneurship, and innovation.
• Assist with the setting up and tearing down of special events, programs, and services in the facility.
• Maintain a clean and safe facility.
• Prepare correspondence and reports.
• Update and maintain the website and calendar.
• Attend all in-service trainings and meetings.

If you are dependable, hard-working, and love to learn new things, you are perfect for the job!

Interested? Email your resume to Sara Menso at sara.menso@umaryland.edu.

  
Sara Menso Bulletin Board, Education, PeopleOctober 17, 20170 comments
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IBD Support Group Launching in November

The School of Medicine is teaming with the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation to launch a new IBD (inflammatory bowl disease) support group in November that’s open to patients, family members, caregivers, and professionals.

The first meeting will take place Nov. 8 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Enoch Pratt Free Library  in Roland Park (5108 Roland Ave., Baltimore).

If you or anyone you know might be interested, please don’t hesitate to attend the first meeting.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact Lauren Sibel at 410-706-8510 or via email at lsibel@som.umaryland.edu.

RSVPs are appreciated, but drop-ins are always welcome.

  
Lauren Sibel Bulletin Board, Collaboration, Education, People, UMB News, University LifeOctober 17, 20170 comments
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School of Nursing’s Colloca Writes About Nocebo Effect

To provide the public with a better understanding of recent groundbreaking research on the nocebo effect, Luana Colloca, MD, PhD, associate professor, University of Maryland School of Nursing, has written an article, “Nocebo Effects Can Make You Feel Pain,” published in Science magazine.

The nocebo effect occurs when a person has a negative expectation of a treatment outcome, leading to adverse effects that otherwise might not occur. Although patient response often can be influenced by expectations, Colloca and her research team discovered that negative reactions to treatments go beyond psychological responses and involve neurobiological mechanisms. Building on Colloca’s work and other lab research, a recent study by Alexandra Tinnermann and colleagues at the University Medical Center in Hamburg, Germany, showed that when a patient expects to experience more pain, there is an activation of the spinal cord leading to increased pain perception.

“If a patient believes the pain is getting worse, even while going through treatment, there may be an increase of the activation of pain facilitatory pathways involving the spinal cord. Tinnermann’s study is the first neurobiological demonstration that shows expectations can change brain nociception processing and make people feel more pain,” Colloca said. “This and other nocebo studies are important because they suggest that the nocebo phenomenon can change the patient response to pain sensations and painkillers.”

Often, successfully overcoming an ailment can depend on past experiences with treatment. Additionally, information provided during the consent process and in the context of patient-clinician communication may trigger nocebo responses. Nocebo effects can contribute to perceived adverse effects and influence clinical outcomes and whether or not a patient adheres to prescribed medication. Nocebo effects should be avoided during clinical trials and practices, according to Colloca. Instead of concealing information related to side effects, a better approach is to minimize nocebo response by tailoring patient-clinician communication to balance truthful information about adverse events with expectations of outcome improvement, exploring patient treatment beliefs and negative therapeutic history, and paying attention to treatment descriptions.

You can read Colloca’s article on the Science magazine website.

  
Kevin Nash Bulletin Board, Collaboration, Education, People, Research, UMB News, University LifeOctober 17, 20170 comments
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