Do you know what to do if hazardous materials are released? Isolate the spill by closing doors, move to a safe location, and call 711 from your office phone or 410-706-3333.
Learn what other steps you can take to prepare for this type of situation.
Do you know what to do if hazardous materials are released? Isolate the spill by closing doors, move to a safe location, and call 711 from your office phone or 410-706-3333.
Learn what other steps you can take to prepare for this type of situation.Dana RampollaPeople, University LifeJune 29, 20180 comments
Jana Goodwin, PhD, RN, CNE, assistant professor and director of the University of Maryland School of Nursing’s (UMSON) Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, has been selected to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s (AACN) Leadership for Academic Nursing Program (LANP). Goodwin is preparing to attend a five-day workshop in which she will participate in intensive classes and exercises related to effective academic leadership on July 29-Aug. 2 in Chaska, Minn.
The AACN-sponsored LANP is an executive leadership fellowship tailored specifically for new and emerging executive administrators who aspire to move into senior administrative or executive positions within the nursing academic unit. The yearlong program is designed to prepare a more diverse, younger pool of leaders to shepherd nursing programs across the globe. This professional development experience encompasses an assessment and evaluation of leadership skills, opportunities for strategic networking and case development, consultation for achieving long-term goals, and identification of key partnerships. Fellows also have mentoring opportunities with an experienced dean.
Goodwin is responsible for developing and implementing policies and procedures for the BSN program. She also collaborates with UMSON’s department chairs, faculty, and the Office of Student and Academic Services for curriculum development; faculty mentorship; quality assurance and improvement; program coordination, planning, and evaluation; and student recruitment, retention, and academic progress.
“We congratulate Dr. Goodwin on this honor. She is highly regarded as an emerging leader and has demonstrated significant expertise on issues of diversity, inclusion, and cultural competence with respect to both learning and practice,” said UMSON Dean Jane M. Kirschling, PhD, RN, FAAN. “She is committed to preparing the next generation of nursing professionals to deliver care in a culturally appropriate manner and is a true asset to our program. I look forward to her future contributions as a nurse educator and administrative leader.”
This year, 49 fellows were selected from across 25 states through a competitive application process to participate in the program.
“This is such a great opportunity to be able to participate in a program that focuses on enhancing the leadership skills of nurse educators,” Goodwin said. “The ability to share ideas and to network with other nurse leaders will be an invaluable experience. I believe that the skills and mentorship gained will be essential to my role as the BSN director at the School of Nursing.”
AACN is a unique asset for the nation that serves the public interest by setting standards, providing resources, and developing the leadership capacity of member schools to advance nursing education, research, and practice. By 2020, as a driving force for quality health care, AACN will leverage member schools in meeting the demand for innovation and leadership in nursing education, research, and practice.Kevin NashBulletin Board, Education, People, UMB News, University Life, USGAJune 29, 20180 comments
Be aware of your surroundings — don’t wear your earbuds while walking around the UMB campus or elsewhere in the city. Wearing earbuds, headphones, or using a cellphone or iPod in public could cause you to miss auditory cues, such as a car horn, or target you as a potential victim. For more safety tips, visit our Police and Safety website.
Remember, you always can request a campus walking or driving escort.Dana RampollaPeople, University LifeJune 29, 20180 comments
Tara Wells has been on quite a winning streak in the last year, winning the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s (UMB) Employee of the Month Award, getting a job promotion, and, most recently, becoming the proud owner of a rowhouse in Pigtown.
Wells, a program administrative specialist in the Department of Organizational Systems and Adult Health at the University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON), is the latest UMB employee to take advantage of the improved Live Near Your Work (LNYW) Program, using the combined grant of $18,500 — $16,000 from UMB, $2,500 from the city of Baltimore — to help purchase her home this month.
“This is surreal. It’s so overwhelming,” said Wells, who describes her LNYW experience, from start to settlement, as sort of a wonderful whirlwind after she decided to abandon a different nonprofit organization’s homebuying incentive program. “I decided in February to go forward with Live Near Your Work. I learned about the incentives, went to the Southwest Partnership’s housing fair in March, looked at homes for sale online, and found my house. I signed a contract April 1 and went to settlement June 1.
“I visited my mother last weekend, and when I was leaving her house, I said, ‘Mom, I’m going home to my house now.’ It still seems a little weird to say that, but it feels great!”
Urged by UMSON Dean Jane M. Kirschling, PhD, RN, FAAN, to pursue the program, Wells attended the Jan. 11 internal kickoff event at the SMC Campus Center, where UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, said it was his dream to see more University employees living among the program’s seven targeted neighborhoods — Barre Circle, Franklin Square, Hollins Market, Mount Clare, Pigtown/Washington Village, Poppleton, and Union Square.
The dream came true for Wells, who also attended a trolley tour of the neighborhoods sponsored by Live Baltimore, one of UMB’s community partners in the program. Living in an apartment in Baltimore County and not being a Baltimore native, she found the trolley tour to be especially helpful as she discovered more of the charms of Charm City.
“I’m originally from Prince George’s County in the D.C. area, so I didn’t know any of the neighborhoods affiliated with the program,” said Wells, who was honored last year as UMB’s September Employee of the Month for her then-role as an administrative assistant II at UMSON. “The trolley tour I took in March really helped me get a feel for the neighborhoods. I’m visual, so I wanted to see where my future home could be.”
Wells says she settled on Pigtown primarily because of a chance encounter with William “Bus” Chambers, a longtime resident who is known as the “Mayor of Pigtown.” She was checking out the neighborhood one evening after work, saw Chambers outside his home, and decided to approach him.
“I introduced myself, he was friendly right off the top, and we talked for two hours,” Wells said. “He told me everything about the neighborhood. I tell him all the time now that he was pretty much my deciding factor on living in Pigtown, because he made me feel so comfortable. The neighborhood is quiet. It’s really peaceful. And the neighbors on my block have been awesome.”
Wells says she had a housewarming party recently, and she has been warming up to the neighborhood, too, checking out the dining establishments around her new digs and in other nearby neighborhoods. She offered praise for Primo Chicken and especially Zella’s Pizzeria, which she calls “amazing.” Living so close to work is great, too, Wells says.
“I get to save on gas and wear and tear on my vehicle, since it only takes me four minutes to drive here,” she said. “I also can go home for lunch if I’d like, and if I stay late for work, I still get home at a decent time. And I can walk or ride a bike to work if I feel like it. I like having the option.”
Wells, who says she stacked a Federal Home Loan Banks incentive of $5,300 on top of the UMB and city funds, is the seventh employee to buy a home with the improved LNYW grant, with seven others in the purchasing pipeline. And there’s room for plenty more, because the University has committed $1.5 million to the program, which means 90-plus employees could take advantage of the LNYW grant.
And to spread that word, the LNYW Program has perhaps its biggest cheerleader in Wells, who would use another title. “I guess you could say I’m a cheerleader, but I’d say I’m more like a public relations person,” she said. “I was just telling a security guard about the program recently, so I have to check to see where his process is. He just got married, and I was like, ‘Go for it!’ ”
Emily Kordish, Human Resource Services benefits manager and coordinator of the LNYW Program, is glad to have Wells’ promotional talents. “I appreciated her genuine sense of excitement throughout the process. She was wonderful to work with,” Kordish said.
The feeling is mutual.
“Each and every person I’ve dealt with in the program was so patient, answered all my questions, and made this process so quick and easy,” Wells said. “I would encourage anyone at UMB to take advantage of this program. I just told another co-worker to hurry up and do it. I said, ‘You’ll be a homeowner, and it’s a great investment.’ ”
— Lou Cortina
Learn more about the LNYW Program at its website, which includes application instructions, neighborhood testimonials, and more, and get a list of upcoming events here. Read about Shea Lawson, the first grantee under the improved LNYW Program, and other grantees’ stories on The Elm.
Mary Baxter, MBA, RPh, FACHE, consultant for Baxter Services, LLC, and former vice president for national practice leader performance and outcomes at Cardinal Health, died June 24 in Virginia Beach, Va. A dynamic health care leader with a passion for helping others achieve their dreams, goals, and objectives, Baxter served as a member of the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy’s Board of Visitors from 2014 to 2017.
“Mary was a dedicated board member who was committed to helping the school continue its efforts to lead pharmacy education, scientific discovery, patient care, and community engagement across the state of Maryland and beyond,” says Natalie D. Eddington, PhD, FCP, FAAPS, dean and professor of the School of Pharmacy. “As dean, I benefited significantly from her expertise, counsel, support, and vision as we worked together with faculty and staff to develop new, innovative models of care. She was an extraordinary health care leader and I will always appreciate the support that she showed not only to our school, but also to me. She will be missed.”
Baxter received her Bachelor of Science degree in pharmacy from Virginia Commonwealth University School of Pharmacy in 1982 and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Richmond in 1992. She began her career as a clinical pharmacist specializing in the field of oncology with the Bon Secours Health System in Richmond, Va., where she rose through the ranks, eventually becoming corporate vice president reporting to the chief executive officer.
Throughout the years, Baxter’s experience in health care leadership continued to evolve. She became renowned for her expertise in hospital administration, health care startup operations, pharmaceutical industry account management, continuous improvement, care transitions, and the changing health care environment. In 2003, she accepted a position with Cardinal Health, where she remained until 2017, serving in a number of a leadership roles, including vice president for health systems pharmacy services, vice president and regional director for the south region, and most recently, vice president for national practice leader performance and outcomes.
She later established Baxter Services, LLC, which specialized in health care strategy related to the management and improvement in outcomes and cost for payers, providers, and patients interacting with the health services environment.
Baxter is survived by her husband, Rick Baxter; brothers Mike Wajciechowski and Wayne Wajciechowski (Patte); sisters Margaret Mood (George) and Ruthe Russell (Tim); and many nieces and nephews.
Memorial services were held at Hollomon-Brown Funeral Home and Great Neck Chapel in Virginia Beach on June 27. Baxter’s family has requested that individuals wishing to honor her memory make a donation to the Sisters Academy of Baltimore, an independent Catholic middle school for girls in grades 5-8 located in Southwest Baltimore.
— Malissa CarrollMalissa CarrollEducation, People, UMB NewsJune 28, 20180 comments
The University of Maryland School of Pharmacy hosted its annual New Student Welcome Day for members of its Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) Class of 2022 on June 15. The event, which featured activities designed to introduce new students to the curriculum and set expectations for the first year as student pharmacists, offered students the opportunity to learn more about the school and meet their fellow classmates for the first time.
“New Student Welcome Day provides us with an opportunity to share important information with the members of our incoming class to help set them up for success in their first semester,” says Cherokee Layson-Wolf, PharmD, BCACP, FAPhA, associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS) and associate dean for student affairs at the School of Pharmacy. “We are able to bring these students together, give them a chance to meet each other, and make connections that will serve them well over the next four years.”
In addition to providing valuable information about financial aid and upcoming coursework as well as sizing students for their white coats, which they will don for the first time during the school’s annual White Coat Ceremony in September, New Student Welcome Day offered incoming students the chance to participate in an interactive student panel discussion, gaining additional information about classes, student life, and life in Baltimore directly from the individuals most familiar with those topics — current students.
“Today is an incredibly exciting day for me,” said Sara Mustapha, an incoming member of the Class of 2022. “As an undergraduate, I didn’t know many people who were as interested in pharmacy as I was, so it’s great to have this opportunity to visit the school and surround myself with others who share my passion for the profession. I have been dreaming about this day since I received my acceptance letter, and I can’t wait for the fall semester to finally get into the classroom and start honing my critical-thinking and decision-making skills.”
The School of Pharmacy looks forward to welcoming back the Class of 2022 in August for New Student Orientation. To see more highlights from New Student Welcome Day, view this video on YouTube.
— Malissa Carroll
Malissa CarrollEducation, UMB News, University LifeJune 27, 20180 comments
UMB’s new policy on accepting gifts in kind — Policy IX-3.00(B) — will assist schools and departments in determining the acceptance of gifts in kind and coordinating any necessary additional University response. It defines responsibilities and highlights specific gifts that require additional review.Shannon WrennUniversity LifeJune 27, 20180 comments
The Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS) at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy hosted its first practice-based Research Day in April to highlight current research endeavors in which its students and trainees are engaged. In addition to allowing participants to showcase their research to the department’s faculty and leadership, the event offered a forum in which students and trainees could receive constructive feedback to help enhance their presentation skills.
“Research Day provided an opportunity to bring faculty, staff, students, and trainees from across the department together to help foster the professional development of some of our profession’s newest researchers,” says Jill A. Morgan, PharmD, BCPS, BCPPS, associate professor and chair of PPS. “The students, residents, and fellows who presented posters at this event received thoughtful feedback that they will be able to use to help strengthen their presentations for future regional, national, and international meetings and conferences. It was a remarkable event, and a truly beneficial experience for all who participated.”
More than 40 posters highlighting research conducted by student pharmacists, residents, fellows, and their faculty mentors were displayed during the event. The research showcased addressed a number of important issues related to health disparities, medication use, and best practices to prevent and treat a variety of illnesses. Members of the department’s faculty and leadership spoke with students and trainees to learn more about their research, evaluating them based on the quality of their research abstracts, posters, and presentation skills.
The student and trainee who had the highest scoring abstracts were given an opportunity to deliver podium presentations highlighting their research. Shamir Kalaria, PharmD, postdoctoral fellow in the Center for Translational Medicine at the school, received the highest scoring trainee abstract and presented his research titled “A Quantitative Approach to Optimize Levetiracetam Dosing in Critically Ill Patients Undergoing Continuous Venovenous Hemofiltration” at the podium, while third-year student pharmacist Alan Lin received the highest scoring student abstract and presented his research titled “Comorbid Asthma Increases Severity of Anaphylaxis.”
“Faculty in our department are committed to equipping the next generation of pharmacists with the knowledge and skills they will need to be leaders in both pharmacy practice and clinical research,” says Neha S. Pandit, PharmD, BCPS, AAHIVP, associate professor and vice chair for research and scholarship in PPS. “This year’s friendly competition encouraged students and trainees to bring their A-game to Research Day. We congratulate Dr. Kalaria and Mr. Lin on their tremendous achievement. Their research will have a positive impact on countless patients in the future.”
Awards also were presented to the students and trainees who had the highest and second-highest scoring abstracts and poster presentations combined.
Sari Freedman, PharmD, resident in the PGY-2 Solid Organ Transplant Pharmacy Residency Program at the School of Pharmacy, and Laetitia N’Dri, third-year student pharmacist, received awards for the highest scoring abstracts and poster presentations for their research projects titled “Cytomegalovirus Prophylaxis Following Alemtuzumab Induction in High Risk Renal Transplant Recipients Experiencing Delayed Graft Function” and “Patient-centered Approach to Developing a Plan to Achieve Blood Pressure Control,” respectively.
In addition, Ana Vega, PharmD, resident in the PGY-2 Infectious Diseases Pharmacy Residency Program at the school, and Heather Kirwan, fourth-year student pharmacist, received awards for the second highest scoring abstract and poster presentations for their projects titled “Characterizing Variability in Calculated Vancomycin Pharmacokinetic Parameters in Hospitalized Patients” and “Identifying Medication Discrepancies During Medication Reconciliation Utilizing Different Sources for Information,” respectively.
“The breadth of research showcased at this year’s Research Day truly exemplifies the many ways in which pharmacists can impact patient care not only as practitioners, but also as researchers,” Pandit says. “The event was an overwhelming success, and we cannot wait to see the innovative research that these students and trainees are inspired to pursue as they continue to progress in their careers.”
— Malissa CarrollMalissa CarrollClinical Care, Education, Research, UMB NewsJune 27, 20180 comments
The TEDx Program, which was formed in 2009 to help communities, organizations, and individuals spark conversation and connection, is coming to the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB).
On Friday, Nov. 9, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the SMC Campus Center, speakers will make TEDx presentations related to the theme of “Improving the Human Condition,” a primary piece of UMB’s mission statement.
TEDx Talks should express great, well-formed ideas. These can be a new and surprising idea or a great basic idea presented with a compelling new argument behind it that challenges beliefs and perspectives. In other words, TEDx is for ideas that are more than stories or lists of facts. It’s for ideas that take evidence and observations and use them to draw larger conclusions.
TEDx rules allow only 100 attendees at the event, so a lottery system is being used to acquire tickets. Details will be available later on UMB’s Tedx website, where you also will find links to learn more about the TEDx Program.
If you’re interested in being a speaker — and you are urged to make us laugh or make us cry! — apply before July 16 at tedxumbaltimore.com/apply/. Finalists will be contacted for an exploratory interview, and speaker selections will be made by Aug. 15. TEDx Talks are 18 minutes maximum.
UMB is proud to be joining the 15,000 TEDx events that have been held in every corner of the world and solicited 1 billion views online.
The School of Pharmacy’s PATIENTS Program invites all faculty, staff, and students to PATIENTS Day 2018 on July 20, 11:30 a.m.-5 p.m. at the UM BioPark (801 W. Baltimore Street).
The day will be an interactive, educational health fair where community members, health care providers, researchers, and community organizers can learn from one another about what our community needs to create and sustain healthy individuals and families.
Activities will include blood-pressure screenings, HIV testing, fitness demonstrations, recreational activities and music, wellness advocates on-site to answer questions, and free lunch.Erin MerinoCommunity Service, Education, For B'more, PeopleJune 26, 20180 comments
The 2019 Universitywide commencement of the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) graduation festivities will come first, rather than last, in what UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, called “a simple reversal” aimed at attracting more graduates to the ceremony at Royal Farms Arena.
The two-day graduation celebration at UMB has begun with the individual convocations of the six professional schools and the hooding ceremony held by the interdisciplinary Graduate School. “Our students understandably have a great deal of attachment to their individual school convocations, and that needs to be left alone,” Perman said at his quarterly Q&A open to the UMB community on June 19. “I still remember my own medical school graduation.
“Having said that, and consistent with my theme of this being one University, we have to do better in terms of attendance at the Universitywide graduation. It’s a place where we come together. Since I arrived in 2010, I have been asking, ‘What can we do to attract more folks to the Universitywide ceremony?’ ”
For many years, the Universitywide commencement has been held on Friday afternoons, after all the individual convocations and a Party in the Park. “I understand people want to get out of town and they want to celebrate,” Perman said of the attendance on Friday afternoons. “But I want people at the University graduation, too.”
So on Thursday morning, May 16, 2019, the Universitywide commencement, where graduates officially receive their diplomas, will begin UMB’s two-day graduation celebration. “I just shared that with the deans before this Q&A,” Perman said, “and I’m happy to share this with you now.”
— Chris ZangChris ZangUMB News, University Administration, University Life, USGAJune 25, 20180 comments
Mary Jo “M.J.” Bondy, DHEd, MHS, PA-C
Transforming the Future of Education at UMB
Mary Jo “M.J.” Bondy’s official title is assistant dean of academic programs at the University of Maryland Graduate School. But like most people at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB), she wears more hats than her title suggests.
As an award-winning teacher, certified physician assistant (PA), PA program director, leader within the Office of Academic Innovation Distance Education, and self-proclaimed “beach girl,” Bondy has been instrumental in transforming the future of education at UMB.
When she began her role as assistant dean in 2016, she was tasked with making sure all instruction delivered online met the quality expectations of the University — the same rigorous and evidence-based best practices and curriculum delivered in the classroom should also apply to online learning at the Graduate School.
“I have this wonderful opportunity to work with some of the most talented people — leadership, faculty, instructional designers, and media specialists,” she says, “and there’s this palpable can-do attitude that allows us to take risks that are rare in higher education these days.”
A perfect example? The massive open online course (MOOC) that UMB and the University of Maryland University College (UMUC) piloted, working with EdX and the University System of Maryland, which has reached more than 1,000 learners across the globe.
“The amazing thing about the MOOC is you’re putting up graduate-level content by world-class UMB and UMUC faculty for consumption by anyone worldwide on this celebrated EdX platform,” she says. “By just doing that, we’re advancing the mission of the institution to be a beacon to the world as an environment for learning and discovery by showing our commitment to health and advancing knowledge wherever and however we can.”
The first free online course centered on global health lessons on Ebola, with input from UMB’s Center for Global Education Initiatives. The next global health course, launching in summer 2018, will focus on violence and disaster relief. People from all over the world viewed the first course — from inner city Baltimore to parts of South America and Africa, where Bondy, who was head of the Graduate School’s Master of Science in Public Health program from 2014 to 2016, says lessons learned about global health system issues and the Ebola response could be applied to the Zika outbreak and other epidemics plaguing these regions.
With access-to-care issues worldwide, Bondy hopes that expanding education — using technologies like MOOC — will not only improve quality of care delivery, but also reduce health disparities, especially in underserved populations. Throughout her career as a PA, she’s worked to do just that, helping underserved patients in urban and rural areas. Now, in her role at the Graduate School, she’s doing the same through higher education.
“I see the Graduate School reinventing itself every day, by being more entrepreneurial and getting more involved in online education,” she says. “I applaud the leadership for being open to evolving, because we know the way students learn is impacted by technology, and leadership has been instrumental and proactive in putting the resources behind that.”
As described in UMB’s Catalyst campaign to fund endowments, scholarships, research, and programs at the University, the future of UMB will be driven by Big Ideas — key strategic priorities and outcomes that leverage the unique interdisciplinary expertise of UMB’s seven schools and organizations worldwide to be catalysts of change. One of those Universitywide Big Ideas that Bondy is championing is ending the cycle of opioid addiction through interprofessional education.
Last year, she and faculty from across UMB, in partnership with the Baltimore Area Health Education Center, piloted a training program that brought together faculty and students from all seven schools for training on Narcan, a revolutionary drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. A 2015 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study reported nearly 26,000 overdose reversals nationwide through use of the drug.
“Knowing how West Baltimore has been struck really tragically by opioid addiction — and how the death rate has increased significantly — I’m so proud that we’ve led the first initiative to bring all schools together to fight this epidemic,” Bondy says. “The Graduate School is uniquely prepared to do that because we’re the nexus where all schools come together.”
The first event in April 2017 saw faculty generously volunteering their time and working with a community health worker to train UMB students on how to recognize and assess someone for potential overdose, and how to deliver the lifesaving drug when desperately needed. It was so successful they held another training event in the fall 2017 semester and received ongoing funding from the UMB Center for Interprofessional Education for a spring training session that was held in April 2018.
It’s a shining example of how UMB leverages its resources in local neighborhoods to make a difference, to combat the opioid addiction that has a stronghold on some of Baltimore’s most vulnerable communities.
“It’s completely aligned with President Perman’s mission and vision and interprofessional education charge,” Bondy says. “At the same time, we’re giving our students a voice in how to move forward, and how UMB can extend its resources to make a real, meaningful impact on our communities.”
The School of Medicine’s Department of Medicine is pleased to offer its 16th annual summer course titled “Introduction to Basic Research” in August 2018.
The course is designed for fellows, residents, postdocs, technicians, students, and clinicians who would like to include basic research in their studies, as well as clinicians who would like to explore the applications of basic science methodologies in clinical research. The goal of this course is to provide an overview of the research techniques and expertise available on campus and the core scientific resources available to our scientists at UMB.
Lectures will deal with the background behind various molecular techniques, statistical applications and data analysis, balancing effort vs. impact when beginning new research projects, research portfolio building, use of experimental animals, concepts of experimental design and experimental models.
The course will be held for two weeks — Aug. 13 to Aug. 24 — with classes held from 9 a.m. to noon each day.
The deadline for registration is Aug. 8. Registration, which covers the cost of all class materials, is $25. Checks should be written to the University of Maryland, Baltimore.
For further information, please contact Ishwar S. Singh at email@example.com.
Registration forms can be scanned and emailed to Ishwar S. Singh at firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to:
Ishwar S. Singh
Health Science Facility II, Room S141
20 Penn St.
Baltimore, MD 21201
CME credits will not be available.Singh IshwarClinical CareJune 22, 20180 comments
Mark your calendars for the School of Pharmacy’s annual Teaching Excellence Day on July 26 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the SMC Campus Center.
This free event is a professional development opportunity for faculty, residents, and preceptors to improve upon and hone their teaching skills. Visit this Event Brite page for more information and to register.Erin MerinoEducation, UMB News, University LifeJune 22, 20180 comments
Life is good for Ginger Pritchett.
In two short years at the University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON), she has moved up from temporary employee to academic program specialist to registration coordinator in the Office of Student and Academic Services.
She also graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology from University of Maryland University College last December, is completing coursework for a certificate in sustainable urban communities, and anticipates enrolling this fall in a master of public administration program.
Pritchett’s trajectory took another upward turn June 15, when she was recognized as the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s (UMB) Employee of the Month, singled out for her hard work, pleasant personality, and deep devotion to the School of Nursing, which she calls an “awesome place to work.”
A lot of people think she’s awesome, too, including UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, who surprised Pritchett with the award in the President’s Conference Room at the Saratoga Building, where Pritchett and five UMSON colleagues were gathered for what she thought was a meeting to discuss UMB’s diversity and inclusion efforts.
“This meeting is to honor you,” Perman told Pritchett, who wiped tears from her eyes as he spoke. “Your supervisors and colleagues said it’s important to recognize you because of your work ethic and the difference you’ve made to the School of Nursing. You’ve taken on important new roles, and then you spend the time and effort to prepare someone else to take your former job.
“I also hear that you’re just wonderful with making all the students and new employees feel welcome. All of that means a lot to me. And it means a lot to the University.”
Perman gave Pritchett a plaque, a letter of commendation, and news that an extra $250 would be in her next paycheck, which the winner says will go toward buying books — “Or maybe a single book,” she said with a laugh — for her daughter in college.
“This is awesome and a shock at the same time,” Pritchett said. “You do a lot of things throughout your life, and you do them not to be recognized but just because you’re supposed to do it. So it’s just really great to be honored in this way.”
Perman’s tribute brought nods of approval and cheers from the group of co-workers, who clearly appreciate Pritchett’s contributions to UMSON’s Office of Student and Academic Services.
“Ginger is one of the hardest-working employees in the School of Nursing,” Cynthia Pumphrey, MS, assistant director, registration and clinical placements, said in nominating Pritchett. “She greets every student and every phone call with a smile and a pleasant disposition. Her achievements are numerous since coming onboard with the School of Nursing as a permanent employee.”
Among her duties, Pritchett coordinates the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program from registration to graduation, oversees the school’s participation in the DAISY Foundation Awards each semester, and organizes the VIP section for commencement. She even lends her proofreading skills to the graduation cards and program. “She assures that every I is dotted and every T is crossed,” Pumphrey said.
As the DAISY Foundation Awards coordinator, Pritchett works as a liaison with the foundation, UMSON, and alumnus Cynthia Sweeney, MSN, BSN ’76, RN, the foundation’s executive director. The DAISY in Training Award honors BSN students who deliver clinical care in a compassionate way to patients and their families. “I like to make sure the program is running smoothly,” she says.
She does her part to make the Office of Student and Academic Services run smoothly, too, in particular, as Perman noted, by assisting in the training of her replacement as academic program specialist after being promoted to her current job last December.
“We couldn’t have oriented the new hire without Ginger’s help, expertise, and organizational skills,” Pumphrey said. “Ginger had such detailed registration training/process material to share with the new employee and took a great deal of time out of her schedule, now straddling two roles, to make them feel welcome and bring them up to speed in record time.”
Pritchett offered thanks to Pumphrey, Lori Harris, MA, director of registration and clinical placement, and Larry Fillian, MEd, associate dean of student and academic services, saying they are “truly amazing” people to work with. In fact, she says her colleagues are the best thing about her job.
“Some people come to work and don’t enjoy what they do — not because of their tasks but because of their environment,” Pritchett said. “I have a really great working environment. From the time I arrive to the time I leave to go home, I work with a really great group of people. It makes coming here every day that much more enjoyable.”
And she found it especially noteworthy to be recognized by Perman.
“Normally, we’re ushering Dr. Perman in for graduation and then ushering him out,” she said, “but it felt great to stand side by side with him and to hear him honor me and thank me for being an employee at UMB. I find that to be beyond humbling.”
— Lou Cortina
To read about previous Employee of the Month winners, visit Human Resource Services’ employee recognition web page.Lou CortinaPeople, UMB News, University LifeJune 22, 20180 comments