Contests posts displayed by category

The President’s Message

Check out the November issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on UMB’s outreach to alumni, a wrap-up of Founders Week, Derreck Kayongo’s Politics and Policy presentation, MPower seed grant recipients and an award for the BioPark, stories on RISING Baltimore and the schools’ Mission of Mercy community service, a safety tip, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

  
Chris Zang Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGANovember 10, 20170 comments
Read More

National Ethics and Compliance Week to Focus on Responsibility

Nov. 6-10 is National Ethics and Compliance Week.

We are called upon to make ethical decisions every day in our interactions, in our academic and professional pursuits, and in fulfilling our ongoing responsibilities. Our ethical decisions are reflected to our community through our actions. Compliance measures our ethical commitment to civility, integrity, and lawfulness. It demonstrates — individually and collectively — our desire to live our core values and shows our commitment to our culture.

The Office of Accountability and Compliance (OAC) is committed to UMB and its community. During National Ethics and Compliance Week, the OAC is committed to raising awareness and promoting thoughtfulness in our daily decision-making and interactions.

OAC is Open, Accessible, and Collaborative

This year, our National Ethics and Compliance Week activities will revolve around the importance of responsibility. In fulfilling our responsibilities, UMB and each of us become the leaders our core values call upon us to be.

All members of the UMB community are responsible for pursuing excellence in our work and our studies. We are responsible for obtaining and disseminating knowledge, all while acting professionally, respectfully, and courteously to one another. We have a responsibility to ourselves and others to demonstrate our leadership by working collaboratively to achieve great things.

Join OAC during National Ethics and Compliance Week as we demonstrate our commitment through a series of events, including:

• OAC meet and greet on Nov. 6 from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the SMC Campus Center.
• HRPO panel discussion on responsibility in human subjects research on Nov. 8.
• EthicsCaching contest (no GPS needed!) on Nov. 10.

Additional information on the panel discussion and ethics event will be available at the meet and greet on Nov. 6.

You also can find OAC on UMBConnect to participate in our discussions on accountability, compliance, ethics, and promoting our culture of commitment.

We look forwarding to seeing you there!

  
Stephanie Suerth Bulletin Board, Contests, Education, UMB News, University LifeOctober 30, 20170 comments
Read More

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
Read More

Can-Do Spirit Lifts McMorris to UMB Employee of Month Award

Yvonne McMorris is a kind and trusting soul. Therefore, when her Carey School of Law colleagues told the faculty support manager she needed to attend a learning and development meeting on the 14th floor of the Saratoga Building on Sept. 28, she believed them.

She still believed them when UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, entered the conference room and sat beside her. When he said she did a great job, she thanked him and waited for the meeting to start.

When Perman stated he had a lot to say about McMorris, she softly asked, “This is not about learning and development?” Even several minutes after being told she was UMB’s Employee of the Month, she still could not get over the fact the scheduled meeting was a hoax, saying, “And I came here with notes and everything,” to the delight of the cheering and laughing group assembled for the occasion.

“One of the faculty wrote that you are both the most competent and the most dedicated faculty assistant with whom she has ever worked,” Perman told McMorris. “She talks about the fact that when faculty are working against a deadline, it’s almost always you volunteering to stay late to finish the work.”

After receiving a plaque, a letter, and a promise of $250 in her next paycheck that brought her to tears, McMorris leaned back in her chair, still in disbelief, and answered questions about her UMB career.

An Inquiring Mind

A legal secretary in New York before moving to Maryland, McMorris came to the law school in March 1999 to do secretarial work. A diligent worker, she quickly showed a “thirst for knowledge,” according to Mary Alice Hohing, director of administration and operations, taking classes to improve her skills, earning promotions to administrative assistant II (2001), coordinator for faculty support (2006), and office manager (2014) after obtaining her bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Baltimore.

Curious by nature, McMorris says it’s impossible to work at the school and NOT learn something. “I tell staff when your professor is writing something, engage them, ask them what it is they are writing about, and become interested in what they are doing,” she says.

She said that professor emeritus David Bogen, LLB, LLM, educated her about black history and slavery while he was writing a book about it. “Just sitting there and listening, gaining the knowledge that he has — that is how it is when I am with each professor,” McMorris says. “If they are writing, I like to ask them questions.”

In addition to reading articles, books, and manuscripts for the professors, McMorris puts together recommendation letters, assists with research — “whatever faculty needs” — and helps train her fellow staff members.

Her efforts are most appreciated.

Professor Donald Gifford, JD, who calls McMorris the most competent and dedicated faculty assistant with whom he has worked in nearly 40 years in legal education, says, “When some other assistants are faced with a challenging task, they respond, ‘It can’t be done.’ In contrast, Yvonne’s response is always ‘I do know that can be done. Let me see what I can do.’”

Professor Paula Monopoli, JD, adds, “Yvonne is a role model for all the other administrative assistants whom she helps to supervise. Her willingness to pitch in at any time demonstrates her excellence as a team player.”

Professor Andrew Blair-Stanek, JD, says, “She is immensely professional, hard-working, and conscientious.”

“I often say that great law schools are made up of great people — great students, faculty, staff, and alumni,” says Dean Donald B. Tobin, JD. “Yvonne McMorris is a perfect example. She represents our excellence. She is always willing to lend a hand; thinks ‘yes’ before ‘no’; and is always willing to take on new challenges and learn new things.”

When she read some of the faculty’s comments, McMorris smiled and said, “Wow, I’ll have to thank them.”

Dedication and Appreciation

Although she never expected to be August Employee of the Month, McMorris admits, “I give a lot.” She tells of running into an associate dean at midnight at the school when they were working on deadline projects, of students she has watched “blossom,” of longtime faculty such as William Reynolds, JD, and Daniel Goldberg, JD, who have given her as much as they have received. “I am fortunate to be able work with such wonderful people,” she says.

She attributes her work ethic to her faith and her parents.

“First of all, I’m a Christian, and the Bible states that I can do all things through Christ because He strengthens me. While living in England, my mom left nursing school to take care of her family. After my sister, brother, and I graduated from high school here in the United States, my mom went back to school full time for nursing, while she had a full-time job — it was now my mom’s turn. My mom gave me the inspiration for going back to school because she was my role model. She set the example. And she always says, ‘America is the land of opportunity.’ ”

With a wistful look, McMorris looked around the president’s conference room and exclaimed: “I am going to tell my children what happened today! I can’t believe this!”

— Chris Zang

  
Chris Zang Collaboration, Contests, Education, People, UMB News, University LifeOctober 11, 20170 comments
Read More

The President’s Message

Check out the October issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on the Catalyst fundraising campaign, a look ahead to Founders Week and Derreck Kayongo’s Politics and Policy presentation, a recap of the quarterly Q&A, a safety tip for pedestrians, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

  
Chris Zang ABAE, Bulletin Board, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University LifeOctober 10, 20170 comments
Read More

The President’s Message

Check out the September issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on workplace wellness and Launch Your Life, a look ahead to UMB Night at Oriole Park and Dr. Perman’s quarterly Q&A, a recap of the YouthWorks and CURE Scholars summer programs, a story on a patient’s kayak journey to honor the late Dr. Brodie, a safety tip concerning personal property, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

 

  
Chris Zang Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Research, Technology, University Life, USGASeptember 11, 20170 comments
Read More

Founders Week Award Winners Named

Every fall, we dedicate one week to commemorating UMB’s rich history and to celebrating the future we’re building together. Among the highlights of Founders Week is recognizing the extraordinary work of our faculty and staff. Four awards are given every year, each signifying outstanding accomplishment in one facet of our mission. We’re delighted to announce the recipients of our 2017 Founders Week Awards.

Entrepreneur of the Year

Bartley P. Griffith, MD
School of Medicine
Thomas E. and Alice Marie Hales Distinguished Professor in Transplant Surgery
Founder, Breethe, Inc.

A world-renowned heart and lung transplant surgeon, Dr. Griffith struggled for decades to develop an artificial lung — one that wouldn’t tie patients to a breathing machine in a hospital bed.

After 20 years, he achieved his goal, creating a portable, at-home device for artificial respiration.

To market this technology, which should help hundreds of thousands of patients each year, Dr. Griffith in 2014 worked with UM Ventures, the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s commercialization arm, to found the company Breethe, Inc.

Based at the BioPark, Breethe, Inc. is deep into product development, funded to date through three rounds of equity capital with Dr. Griffith playing an active role.

Dr. Griffith, who came to the School of Medicine in 2001, has performed more than 1,250 heart transplants and nearly 700 lung transplants.

In 2010, when he was named UMB’s Researcher of the Year, Dr. Griffith was credited with having “the most heavily funded cardiac surgery program in the United States” with $25 million the previous decade.

In addition to his lung breakthroughs, Griffith was one of the early surgeons to implant a Jarvik heart, and he developed a pediatric heart pump.

Previously chief of cardiac surgery at the School of Medicine, Dr. Griffith recently raised funding to endow a joint chair between the SOM Department of Surgery and the Department of Bioengineering in College Park. The chair helps to create new medical devices.


Public Servant of the Year

Susan M. Antol, PhD, RN
School of Nursing
Assistant professor, Department of Partnerships, Professional Education and Practice
Director, Wellmobile and School-Based Programs

During the past 19 years at the School of Nursing, Dr. Antol has developed innovative approaches for meeting the needs of underserved individuals throughout the state. Applying her community health nursing expertise, her organizational skills, and her perseverance, she has brought health care services to at-risk children, the homeless, immigrants, migrant workers, veterans, and victims of human trafficking.

She has led nurse-managed school-based programs providing direct care to children and has served on key statewide committees such as the Maryland Assembly on School-Based Health Care and the Governor’s School-Based Health Center Policy Advisory Council.

As director of the Governor’s Wellmobile Program since 2009, Dr. Antol has overseen nurse-managed primary care services in underserved areas ranging from Maryland’s Eastern Shore to Prince George’s and Montgomery counties and Western Maryland. When Wellmobile funding was cut in half in fiscal year 2010, she pursued grants and partnerships, securing three years of funding from CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, and in 2017 partnered with other University schools in a $1.2 million grant from the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission.

An advocate for interprofessional practice, she received $1.04 million in 2015 in Health Resources and Services Administration funding to expand the Wellmobile’s interprofessional practice. In collaboration with the schools of Medicine, Pharmacy, and Social Work, Dr. Antol and her team have implemented an interprofessional practice that serves as a clinical education site and is examining new methods of providing care through the Wellmobile.


Researcher of the Year

Robert K. Ernst, PhD
School of Dentistry
Professor, Department of Microbial Pathogenesis

Dr. Ernst and his colleagues are engineering rationally designed mimetics based on bacterial surface molecules that will inhibit the body’s immune response to sepsis, a condition that causes a death every two minutes in the U.S.

In particular, he is at the forefront of innovative research studying the molecular basis by which bacteria modify the lipid component of their membrane, specifically lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and how these alterations affect or circumvent normal host innate immune system responses, potentially resulting in septic shock. Additionally, these modifications can promote resistance to host innate immune-killing mechanisms by antimicrobial compounds.

Therefore, altering the biosynthesis of LPS can render the bacteria more susceptible to host cell killing and/or antimicrobial intervention and serve as novel components or adjuvants required for the development of more effective vaccines.

The work of Dr. Ernst, a member of the School of Dentistry faculty since 2008, has attracted ongoing funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), MedImmune, as well as University of Maryland Ventures Seed Grant Funding and the state of Maryland Technology Development Corporation.

An advocate of interprofessional research, he has four colleagues from the School of Pharmacy on the NIH sepsis proposal. One of them, David Goodlett, PhD, co-founded a startup diagnostic company with Dr. Ernst called Pataigin. Its patented test “BACLIB” inexpensively identifies bacteria- and fungi-caused infections in less than an hour.


Teacher of the Year

Fadia Tohme Shaya, PhD, MPH
School of Pharmacy
Professor, Department of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research
Vice Chair for Academic Affairs

Dr. Shaya leads by example and is an inspirational educator, teacher, and mentor to predoctoral students, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty.

She engages her students in research very early on, and includes them in publications. Under her mentorship, her trainees have been awarded prestigious research and training grants. Her courses — Medication Safety, Drug Abuse in the Community, and Formulary Management — are highly sought after and often referenced by graduates as among their most influential. Fluent in five languages (including her native French and Arabic), Dr. Shaya has trained visiting scholars from many countries, including Armenia, France, Israel, Lebanon, and Turkey, and is a popular guest speaker, nationally and internationally.

Along with her School of Pharmacy appointments, she is on the School of Medicine faculty (Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine), director of the Behavioral Health Research and Policy Program, associate director of the Center on Drugs and Public Policy, and adjunct faculty at the American University of Beirut.

Committed to interprofessional education (IPE), she organized an inter-school IPE program on training students to counter the opioid epidemic and how to administer naloxone.

Dr. Shaya also has supported the training of minority students and junior faculty, under the NIH minority supplement mechanism. She serves as a mentor to inner city high school students through the UMB Bioscience Summer Program.

As vice chair for Academic Affairs, Dr. Shaya has helped introduce population health and health services research-based courses in the PharmD curriculum and expand dual-degree options for pharmacy students.


For more on the Founders Week events, including the awards presentation at the Founders Gala on Saturday, Oct. 14, visit The Elm and Founders Week websites in the weeks to come.

  
Chris Zang Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University LifeAugust 28, 20170 comments
Read More

Gamez Shows High Fiber In Carpeting Crisis

Pedro Gamez went two floors up in the Saratoga Building for what he thought was a staff picture with his Maryland Poison Center colleagues. But when University President Jay A. Perman, MD, entered the conference room on July 27 and asked for him by name, Gamez went into defense mode.

“Wasn’t me!” he exclaimed, getting a laugh from his co-workers.

“I don’t know why I have this effect on people,” Perman joked. “You’re not in trouble but you did do something — something that makes us want to honor you as UMB’s Employee of the Month!”

“New car?” Gamez asked, causing his cheering co-workers to laugh some more. But despite Gamez’s jokes, it was his serious attitude and work ethic that won him the July honor.

As one of 55 poison centers across the United States, the Maryland Poison Center, part of the School of Pharmacy, receives approximately 44,000 calls per year, from the routine to the life-threatening. It is a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week operation, keeping Gamez, who has been a LAN (local area network) administrator at the center for four years, and his colleagues on their toes.

When the center, which is on the Saratoga Building’s 12th floor, needed new carpeting in May, it wasn’t an easy undertaking. It’s not like the work could be done nights or weekends. Gamez, who maintains the servers, computers, and phone systems of the center, prepared the call center’s hardware to be moved during the install, and configured temporary work stations allowing staff to continue work as they moved from one location to another within the center for a week to accommodate the carpeting work.

Asked whether the carpeting guys hated him by the end of the week, Gamez replied, “The first day they did. I just kept asking them ‘how long is it going to take?’ because I wanted to move the portable system for the next day.” Gamez also came in early, stayed late, and even helped move furniture.

It wasn’t the first time Gamez and senior IT specialist Larry Gonzales had been forced to make Poison Center communications more portable. When power went off in the Saratoga Building in July, during the unrest following Freddie Gray’s death and during several snowstorms, the center stayed operational even though the University was closed.

In his nomination form, Poison Center director Bruce Anderson, PharmD, DABAT, wrote “no caller to the service had any idea that there was anything out of the ordinary happening to the physical plant of the Maryland Poison Center,” during the carpeting upgrade. “The service continued uninterrupted in large part because of Pedro’s efforts.”

Even before the award, Gamez felt blessed to be working at UMB. “Before coming here, the job that I had went away,” he said. “So it was a blessing to come here … my daughter goes to school [at College Park] for free and I’m continuing my education.”

And now $250 wealthier, with a new plaque on his wall, Gamez is grateful — to his colleagues and to his “mentor” Gonzales.

Asked what the award meant to him, Gamez said, “I’m one of those quiet guys. I just come here and I’m happy. I’m just proud that I did a good job.”

It wasn’t his first such award. Gamez won Employee of the Month in the Marine Corps decades ago. Now the challenges are different.

On the Fourth of July, he was about to take his three kids to the movies when the Poison Center called. “They lost internet and we couldn’t connect to the servers,” Gamez recalled. “So I had to reroute the connections.”

Ninety minutes later, his family went to see Despicable Me 3.

Which certainly doesn’t describe Gamez. As Perman said to him in closing on July 27 “we need more like you.”

— Will Milch and Chris Zang

  
Will Milch Contests, Education, People, UMB News, University LifeAugust 8, 20170 comments
Read More

July-August President’s Message

Check out the July-August issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on the Facilities Master Plan, congratulations on UMB being named a great place to work, a look ahead to Welcome Month and UMB Night at Oriole Park, a story about dental students and faculty offering care at the Special Olympics, results of the Campus Climate Survey, which were discussed at Dr. Perman’s quarterly Q&A, stories about Project SEARCH’s graduation and security guard William Groh celebrating 53 years at UMB, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

  
mmooreBulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJuly 28, 20170 comments
Read More
Great College to Work For

UMB Named ‘Great College to Work For’

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) has been selected as one of “The Great Colleges to Work For” by The Chronicle of Higher Education. The results of its national survey, which were released in the magazine’s Academic Workplace supplement that came out July 21, lauded UMB in the categories of collaborative governance, compensation and benefits, and confidence in senior leadership.

The national award is based on information UMB’s Office of Human Resources submitted about the University’s policies and practices and responses from an employee survey administered by a third party.

UMB joins the University of Maryland, Baltimore County as the only institutions in the University System of Maryland recognized as a “Great College to Work For” by The Chronicle. Every accredited college or university in the United States with at least 500 students was invited to participate at no cost. About 45,000 people at 232 institutions responded with 79 colleges and universities being recognized.

“I am proud that The Chronicle shares my opinion that UMB is one of The Great Colleges and Universities to Work For,” said UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD. “On behalf of my leadership team, I am especially humbled that confidence in senior leadership was one of the three categories in which we received exceptional marks.

“We are justly proud of our collaborative governance, with groups like the Faculty Senate, Staff Senate, and University Student Government Association, and I share this award with their many members. And though our compensation is controlled by the state, we are happy that our generous benefits package also emphasizes work/life balance with flexible scheduling, programs for parents, support for elder caregivers, alternative transportation options, private lactation rooms for new moms, and much more.”

Congratulations to all who make UMB deserving of such recognition!

By Chris Zang

  
Chris Zang Clinical Care, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJuly 25, 20170 comments
Read More
Feng

Research Professor Wins Entrepreneurial Award

In 2007, Hanping Feng, PhD, then a research assistant professor at Tufts University Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, decided to transition from basic research to translational research. “I wanted to do something that had a direct impact on human health,” he says.

A decade later, he hasn’t changed his mind. Now a professor in the Department of Microbial Pathogenesis at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry (UMSOD), he is a co-founder of Fzata, Inc., an antibody technology startup company, which in June was named “Best Life Sciences Company” at the Maryland Incubator Company of the Year awards ceremony. Now in its 16th year, the honor is presented annually by a committee of regional leaders and early-stage investors in recognition of promising fledgling technology companies in Maryland.

Feng’s research is focused on the development of novel diagnostics, vaccines, and antibody-based immunotherapies for Clostridium difficile infection (CDI). More than 29,000 deaths in the United States are caused annually by antibiotic-resistant C. difficile; globally the infection is considered an urgent public health threat.

“It’s a huge problem particularly in westernized countries,” says Feng. “It develops frequently in hospitals where antibiotics are administered. Patients expose spores and then develop an infection. The problem is that currently there’s no prevention nor good treatment strategy.”

Feng’s team has developed a highly innovative and multi-specific antitoxin antibody that has been shown to be effective in neutralizing both clostridial toxins and blocking the disease. Based on this research, Feng and FZata team is developing two candidate drug products: an intravenous, fully humanized, tetra-specific, antibody product (FZ001) designed to treat ongoing infection and to prevent recurrence, and an oral, probiotic, yeast product (FZ002) that secretes the antitoxin at the site of infection.

Both drug candidates have been evaluated in animal models of human infection and reveal superior efficacy against the infection than competitors.

In 2015, Feng and co-founder Zhiyong Yang, PhD, a former research scientist, formed FZata to fast track drug candidates by creating a viable pathway toward clinical trials, and ultimately commercial production. “There’s a big gap between University bench work and clinical study for biologics,” Feng says. “The process is expensive and the large pharmaceutical companies don’t want to invest at an early stage because it’s risky.”

The early success of Fzata gives Feng hope that his model can be successful. “We’ve been able to get support because it’s innovative, and it’s centered on a major public health issue.”

Since 2011, when he came to UMSOD from Tufts University, Feng’s research has been supported by 14 grants or contracts totaling $15 million. Most recently, FZata received a $5.6 million National Institutes of Health grant to enable development of lead therapeutics against CDI.

  
Scott Hesel Bulletin Board, Contests, People, Research, TechnologyJuly 24, 20170 comments
Read More
Quantum Financials

The Voters Have Spoken!

We have a winner! UMB’s new financial system will be known as Quantum Financials. The name was submitted by Chiradeep Mukherjee, enterprise wide application specialist in administration  and finance.

Chiradeep’s entry also included a tag line, which inspired the contest team to create one for the new name as well: Quantum Financials | A leap forward. Transforming systems. Empowering people!

Dawn Rhodes, CFBO and VP, commented that she likes the image of “leaping forward” with the new system. She continued, “Enhancing and improving UMB’s financial tools and reporting capabilities is one of the primary goals of this project. While development details and tactical project plans are still being finalized, one thing is certain. Many of you will be asked to become involved in the project as we further define, configure, test and deliver Quantum Financials.”

Thanks again to the hundreds of you who participated by submitting an entry and by voting for your favorite. We’ll keep you posted here and other places as we announce more ways to stay involved with this initiative.

  
Robin Reid Contests, TechnologyJuly 20, 20170 comments
Read More

SSW’s Parkent Is June Employee of Month

When Patricia Parkent, director of sponsored projects at the School of Social Work, was named UMB’s June Employee of the Month by President Jay A. Perman, MD, she was asked to sit at the head of the table for the ceremony.

It’s a well-deserved place of honor, say her colleagues in the School of Social Work, where Parkent began the Office of Research Administration in 2006 with just an administrative assistant for support and now boasts 12 employees with research funding exceeding every school on campus except for the School of Medicine.

“It really could be Employee of the Decade from the School of Social Work’s perspective,” said Dean Richard P. Barth, PhD, MSW, one of 16 Parkent supporters on hand for the ceremony June 21. “I did a little bit of calculating to figure out just how much you have done in this decade in addition to hiring the complete staff and building an office from scratch. Looks to me like it’s around 1,500 proposals that have gone out for about $500 million from across your desk. So, thank you for doing all that and doing it with such humanity.”

Indeed, the way Parkent goes about her job is as impressive as the results she achieves. When Perman praised her for being “the major piece” in creating the platform “so that these research grants can be properly presented, properly received, properly expedited, properly monitored,” Parkent gently corrected him, saying, “Well, me and my team.”

“The mark of a true leader,” Perman replied. “You know what they taught me a while ago? A leader gives credit, takes blame,” eliciting laughter from those assembled.

After Parkent received her plaque and was told there would be an extra $250 in her next paycheck, supervisor Gene Severance, MS, associate dean for administration, thanked her for her investment in her colleagues.

“Pat continually works hard at developing the capabilities of her staff and has been outspoken in the need for staff development for both exempt and non-exempt employees,” said Severance, who in his nomination also mentioned the late nights and weekends sometimes asked of Parkent. “You have really invested in them and almost all of them have advanced in their professional careers, have taken on more responsibility because of your leadership. That’s what has impressed me the most.”

Later, after the celebration had ended, Parkent said supporting colleagues is a win-win for both sides.

“Well, the more knowledgeable the staff are the better job they can do,” she said. “It’s important to know all of the laws that we need to deal with, and abide by. If you don’t have them memorized that’s OK, but you need to know where to go to look them up. And then be aware that they exist. I think every one of my staff now has had a promotion,” she said, smiling proudly. “The promotions have been well-deserved, and the staff has been able to move forward as the school’s moved forward. They are great people.”

Parkent couldn’t be prouder of the School of Social Work in general, especially the “warm and fuzzy” projects that cross her desk as signatory for the school. “The stories have to touch your heart,” she said. “A few years back I’m reading a Family Connections proposal where they wanted to purchase a dinette set because the family did not have any furniture. They needed somewhere just to eat their meals. Kids were sitting on the floor.

“This touched me so much that I got ahold of the social worker who was on this case and I said I want to do something for this family. We went to a secondhand shop and I bought them a living room set and told the social worker to give this to them for Christmas. I just wanted them to have furniture. Anybody should have furniture. Those are the stories you come in contact with at this school. With the kind of work we do, it’s so rewarding to serve behind the scenes because you see the good that comes out of it. It’s just amazing.”

And Parkent, who came to UMB in 2001, originally working at the School of Medicine, also thinks it’s amazing she is UMB’s June Employee of the Month. She recalled the little handwritten list of six grants and projects that then-associate dean Jennie Bloom, MSW, gave her when she started. At present, Parkent is responsible for the administration of over 200 active grants.

“We’ve come so far and it’s really nice to feel appreciated,” she said. “There are a few things that I feel like I need in my job, and, of course, money keeps you going. But you want to feel like you’re respected and appreciated and I do feel those things, so that makes this award very worthwhile and meaningful to me.”

Visit the website for other Employee of the Month stories.

— Chris Zang

  
Chris Zang Bulletin Board, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJuly 5, 20170 comments
Read More
contest

Vote for the Name of UMB’s Cloud Financial System

You overwhelmed us by submitting over 260 creative ideas. Now it’s time to vote for the name of UMB’s new cloud financial system. To make your job easier, we’ve narrowed the field down to a few choices. Here’s how to vote for your favorite.

  • You must have a UMID to vote.
  • To record your vote, you will simply click on your favorite name.
  • You may change your vote as many times as you like. Only your last vote counts.
  • Voting is open from 12:01 a.m., Monday, July 3, through 11:59 p.m., Tuesday, July 11.

Get ready. Get set. Go!

VOTE NOW

  
Robin Reid Bulletin Board, Collaboration, Contests, People, Technology, University LifeJuly 3, 20170 comments
Read More
June President's Message

June President’s Message

Check out the June issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on his State of the University Address, a story on Police Chief Tony Williams’ retirement, a look back at Commencement, a story on Matt Hourihan’s federal research budget forecast, part of the President’s Panel on Politics and Policy, a primer on why philanthropic investment in UMB is so important, a look back at year 2 of the UMB CURE Scholars Program, an invitation to Dr. Perman’s Q&A on June 19, which will include a discussion of the campus climate survey, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

  
Chris Zang ABAE, Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJune 8, 20170 comments
Read More