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Quarterly Q&A with President Perman Set for June 19

The next President’s Q&A will be held Tuesday, June 19, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the School of Nursing Auditorium, Room 140.

Join University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) President Jay A. Perman, MD, as he answers questions from students, staff, and faculty. If you have a specific question you would like to ask but never had the opportunity, or if you would just like to know more about what’s happening around the University, please join us. Please print your questions for Dr. Perman on this PDF and bring them with you.

Everyone is welcome to attend.

For recaps of previous Q&A sessions, go to the President’s Q&A web page.

Eva HanleyUMB News, University LifeMay 22, 20180 comments
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UMMC Schwartz Rounds: ‘When Tragedy Strikes and Compassion Wanes’

The University of Maryland Medical Center will host a Schwartz Rounds forum May 29 that is open to all employees. The topic: “Amidst Embers: When Tragedy Strikes and Compassion Wanes.”

Join our monthly multidisciplinary forum and engage with caregivers in a conversation about the emotional and social issues associated with caring for patients. Panelists will present case studies and facilitate an interactive discussion in which participants can share their experiences.

Here are the details:

  • When: Tuesday, May 29
  • Time: Noon to 1 p.m.
  • Where: UMMC Auditorium, 22 S. Greene St., Baltimore, MD 21201
  • Registration: Go to this link.
  • Note: Lunch will be provided.
  • Continuing education: Physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, and social workers who attend will be eligible to earn one AMA PRA Category 1 credit, one Nursing Continuing Education Hour, or one SW Category 1 CEU.
Briana MathisClinical Care, Education, Research, UMB News, University LifeMay 22, 20180 comments
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School of Pharmacy Celebrates Class of 2018 at Convocation

No other month in the academic year brings about more excitement at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy than May, as faculty and staff join family and friends in celebrating the graduation of the School’s Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), and Master of Science (MS) Class of 2018. This year’s celebrations for graduates in all of the school’s academic programs spanned two days and culminated with the annual convocation ceremony at the Hilton Baltimore Hotel on May 18.

Celebrating Years of Hard Work

In her opening remarks at the convocation ceremony, which focuses on the achievements of the PharmD Class of 2018, Natalie D. Eddington, PhD, FCP, FAAPS, dean and professor of the school, highlighted some of the class’ noteworthy accomplishments from the past four years. She commended the graduates for their commitment to their pharmacy education, noting that some students had not only overcome significant personal challenges to complete their education, but also pursued additional opportunities along the way, including the completion of a dual degree, involvement in a wide range of community and global health projects, and election to local and national student leadership roles.

“Today marks the beginning of a celebration of what is to come for each of you as members of one of the most rewarding professions — pharmacy,” she said. “As new practitioners, you have amazing opportunities in front of you to be critical thinkers and to solve the perennial, long-term problems facing health care, research, and society. Challenge the status quo approach to health care in this country. Use your passion and your enthusiasm to drive our profession to truly impact patient care in a more visible, sustainable manner focused on delivering positive health care outcomes.”

Imparting Words of Wisdom

Victoria Hale, BSP ’83, PhD, founder and chief executive officer of OneWorld Health and Medicines360 — and one of the School of Pharmacy’s Founding Pharmapreneurs — was selected by the Class of 2018 as the keynote speaker for convocation in recognition of her enduring passion for the development of important new medicines for all of humanity, with the specific goal of reducing health inequities. In her speech, Hale encouraged graduates to rely not only on their intellect as they progress through their careers, but also to listen to their hearts and make their own unique mark on the pharmacy profession.

“You are sitting here today as a graduate of the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy because of your intellect,” Hale said. “All that you have learned here will carry you far in this world. But there are a lot of people with great intellects. It is your heart that will direct you and guide you, if you are open to it. I chose the pharmacy path because it was what my heart told me to do. But each of us has a different way of being in the world. It is only through knowing your heart that you will find your true path.”

Transitioning from Students to Professionals

Amanda Oglesby-Sherrouse, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences (PSC); and James Trovato, PharmD, MBA, BCOP, FASHP, associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS); with assistance from Cherokee Layson-Wolf, PharmD, BCACP, FAPhA, associate professor in PPS and associate dean for student affairs, joined Eddington in presenting graduates with their doctoral hoods to signify their completion of the highest professional degree in pharmacy.

“Donning the traditional olive-colored pharmacy hood represents the fact that you have entered a caring profession that depends upon your proper use of scientific and clinical knowledge,” Eddington said. “You must care for your patients with compassion as well as intelligence. You will be trusted by patients — do not underestimate the importance of that trust, nor treat it lightly. You will have an impact on peoples’ lives.”

Honoring All Graduates

Twenty students graduating from the school’s PhD in Pharmaceutical Health Services Research (PHSR) and PhD in PSC programs received their hoods during the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s Graduate School ceremony on May 17. The MS in Regulatory Science program also hosted its third convocation in Pharmacy Hall on May 17 to celebrate its nearly 30 graduates.

“Progressing through this graduate program was a much different experience than pursuing my undergraduate degree,” said Mark Hendrickson, senior director of sciences and regulatory affairs for the Association for Accessible Medicines and member of the program’s Class of 2018. “Over 18 months, my classmates and I spent five semesters together, completing approximately 350 hours of online lectures, 30 scheduled live discussions with our peers, 10 individual papers, 10 group papers, and 10 group presentations. To have this opportunity to interact with other working professionals from all sorts of backgrounds — learning from these individuals and working together to pursue a combined interest — was really a fascinating experience.”

The school’s MS in Pharmacometrics program also celebrated its fifth graduating class. This year’s graduating class featured 12 students, including two dual-degree students from the school’s Doctor of Pharmacy program — Priya Brunsdon and Minseok Lee.

After the school’s morning convocation ceremony, graduates assembled in the afternoon for a Universitywide graduation ceremony at Royal Farms Arena, where Jody Olsen, PhD, MSW, director of the Peace Corps and former faculty member at the University of Maryland School of Social Work, delivered the keynote address.

To view more photos and video from this momentous occasion, please visit the School of Pharmacy’s Facebook page.

PharmD Class of 2018 Awards and Prizes 

  • Preceptors of the Year: Jeffrey Mrowczynski, PharmD; Zachary Noel, PharmD, BCPS; Richard D. Parker, Jr., PharmBS; and Jessica Pyhtila, PharmD, BCGP, BCPS
  • Andrew G. DuMez Award for Superior Proficiency in Pharmacy: Alina Jane Kukin
  • Terry Paul Crovo Award in Pharmacy Practice for Performance and Promise to Uphold the Highest Standards of the Profession: Alyssa Theresa Henshaw and Rachel Allison Lumish
  • Lambda Kappa Sigma, Epsilon Alumnae Chapter-Cole Award for Proficiency in Pharmacy Administration: Chukwukadibia Jideofor Udeze
  • William Simon Memorial Prize for Superior Work in the Field of Medicinal Chemistry, Practical and Analytical Chemistry: Ana Luisa Moreira Coutinho
  • Wagner Pharmaceutical Jurisprudence Prize for Meritorious Academic Achievement in Pharmaceutical Jurisprudence: Ahrang Yoo
  • John F. Wannenwetsch Memorial Prize for Exceptional Performance and Promise in the Practice of Community Pharmacy: Kayla Lynn Otto
  • Conrad L. Wich Prize for Exceptional Work in Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy: Priya Brunsdon
  • S. Williams Practical Pharmacy Prize to the Student Having the Highest General Average in Basic and Applied Pharmaceutics: Jessica Hodge
  • Academic Excellence Award: Jessica Hodge and Rachel Allison Lumish
  • Universities at Shady Grove Academic and Community Excellence Award: Priya Brunsdon
  • Maryland Pharmaceutical Society Award: Gaelle Annick Ngadeu Njonkou
  • Maryland Society of Health-System Pharmacy Award: Kar-Yue Alvin Yee
  • Maryland Pharmacists Association Award: Meryam Sima Gharbi
  • Maryland-ASCP Award: Hongzhuo Lin
  • Alfred Abramson Entrepreneurship Award: Fahim Faruque
  • S. Public Health Service Excellence in Public Health Pharmacy Award: Priya Davey
  • Mylan Excellence in Pharmacy Award: Alaina Marie Robey
  • Leadership Awards: Priya Davey, Bahareh Ghorashi, Emmanuel Kim, Abigail Marie Klutts, Alina Jane Kukin, Joseph Robert Martin, Jenny Diep Nguyen, and Chukwukadibia Jideofor Udeze

— Malissa Carroll

Malissa CarrollEducation, UMB News, University LifeMay 21, 20180 comments
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Team Player and Key Liaison, Nursing’s Hokenmaier Wins UMB Employee of the Month

Sarah Hokenmaier, MPA, has a lot on her plate as a program director in the Department of Family and Community Health at the University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON). This was made crystal clear on May 15 at the Saratoga Building, where Hokenmaier was honored as the University of Maryland, Baltimore’s (UMB) Employee of the Month of April.

UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, surprised Hokenmaier with the award, and before he began to detail what made her such a deserving winner, he stopped and marveled, “The one thing I’ve figured out from all of these accolades is that you do a heck of a lot. You’re involved in everything!”

This came after some playful banter with Perman, who asked Hokenmaier what she was doing in the President’s Conference Room. She said she had been summoned to a meeting with Jennifer B. Litchman, MA, senior vice president for external relations and special assistant to the president, to talk about the coaching program sponsored by UMBrella, a group that works to support the success of women at the University that Litchman chairs. She is Hokenmaier’s mentor, and they did meet — “It was a real/fake meeting, and we need to finish it!” Litchman said with a laugh — but the true reason for Sarah’s presence was to be praised by the president.

“Some very wise people here put you at the head of the table, because this is all about you,” said Perman, who added that one trait in particular stood out from the nomination form sent in by Hokenmaier’s colleagues at the school, several of whom attended the ceremony, including Dean Jane M. Kirschling, PhD, RN, FAAN, and Pat McLaine, DrPH, RN, director of the Community/Public Health Nursing Specialty.

“I saw a word that I really like — and I know Dean Kirschling likes it, too — and that’s ‘team,’ ” Perman said. “It says you enhanced the department’s ability to function as a team through your high-level assessment, communication, and strategic planning skills. That’s something I really value, and that advances the University’s mission. So congratulations, Sarah, and keep up the great work.”

Patient and Pleasant

Hokenmaier received a plaque, a letter of commendation, and the promise of $250 in her next paycheck, which she says she’ll save for a rainy day and is a nice reward for someone whose work brightens her colleagues’ days.

“Sarah is extremely patient, pleasant to work with, very focused on getting the job done, and has a great sense of humor,” McLaine said of Hokenmaier, who also was recognized by UMSON in December, winning the school’s Staff Excellence Award. “Her performance has been outstanding, and she gets excellent results.”

To that end, Hokenmaier works diligently with the five specialty directors in Family and Community Health and serves as a liaison to other departments and offices at the school, including admissions, communications, administrative services, and information and learning technology.

“Her work with the Office of Admissions has streamlined processes, improved communication with the specialty directors, and resulted in higher-quality applicants to our graduate programs,” McLaine said. “Sarah’s work has enabled us to think bigger and focus on how to grow our programs.”

Asked to describe her duties in a nutshell, Hokenmaier said, “I do a wide variety of things, but I would say that I help faculty achieve their goals — related to all different activities. Because of my background in public health, I’m able to work on all sorts of different things — grants, marketing, anything related to the goals the faculty are trying to achieve.”

Hokenmaier has a passion for improving community health outcomes and says this is what drives her to succeed. Before joining UMSON in October 2016, she worked nearly eight years for the Center for Cancer Prevention and Control at the Maryland Department of Health, including the last three as deputy director.

“My master’s degree in public administration focused on nonprofit administration and management, so I’ve always had a heart for community work and community service,” Hokenmaier said. “I love that I have the opportunity to make a difference in public health through my work at the School of Nursing.”

Giving Thanks

Hokenmaier was thrilled to be rewarded – “I really do work hard, and I try to achieve my goals every day,” she said — and honored to be recognized. She thanked Kirschling and McLaine; Susan M. Wozenski, JD, MPH, assistant professor and interim chair of her department; and the specialty directors as a group. “And I can’t forget my co-workers Terria McClain and Phyllis Lovito, who work alongside me in everything I do.”

These colleagues all add to the depth of talent at UMSON, which Hokenmaier says is a great place to work.

“I am impressed every time I am involved in a new project with different staff in other departments,” she said. “I am impressed with how dedicated the staff are, how knowledgeable they are, how creative they are. I have never seen so many people dedicated to doing things right.”

As for herself, Hokenmaier remains dedicated to family and community health.

“I care about the mission. That’s always been important to me, and it makes whatever work I’m doing matter,” she said. “So it means everything to me that the mission is being recognized with this award.”

— Lou Cortina

To read about previous Employee of the Month winners, visit Human Resource Services’ employee recognition web page.

Lou CortinaPeople, UMB News, University LifeMay 21, 20180 comments
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Party in the Park Moves Indoors, But Fun Still Reigns

Party in the Park lived up to half its billing on May 18. The University of Maryland, Baltimore’s (UMB) annual student celebration between the morning school convocations and the afternoon Universitywide commencement had to be moved indoors from Plaza Park because of intermittent rain.

But it indeed was still a party, as graduates and their families headed over from morning convocations to the SMC Campus Center and up its commencement-themed stairway to the Elm Ballrooms for free food and drink and camaraderie. On the first floor near the Fireplace Lounge, attendees danced as a DJ cranked out tunes while others took turns taking pictures in a photo booth. (See photo gallery.)

“I’m so glad that we had this party,” said Sheena Patel, who graduated from the School of Medicine with a Master’s in Public Health. “I’m so glad it wasn’t canceled altogether, because I know in between our ceremonies we have a couple of hours to kill, so it’s a good way to bring people together and give them something to do. I definitely like the photo booth. It’s a lot of fun. The music is upbeat, so that’s cool.”

The weather did rain on one literal parade, however, as the annual academic procession from Plaza Park to Royal Farms Arena was called off. But that didn’t dampen the graduates’ enthusiasm while they enjoyed the party that has been a UMB commencement staple since 2015.

“This is great, especially because all my family is here to see my graduation,” said Dooah Almarzoog, who was celebrating her Master’s in Community Public Health from the School of Nursing. “It’s nice that UMB was prepared to have our guests and show them a good time. I love the DJ and the music. And especially the booth for the photos. Me and my sisters took a lot of nice pictures, so it’s really a good idea.”

As graduates arrived, they could start their visit by writing notes on a large vinyl banner spread across two tables that eventually will be displayed in the campus center. A few themes emerged: gratitude (Thanks, Mom and Dad); celebration and relief (We did it — we’re done!); reflection (What a journey it’s been!); and a little humor (Thanks, FAFSA!).

Up in the Elm Ballrooms, graduates, their families, and guests had their choice of hot dogs, sliders, potato salad, and cookies provided by CulinArt. The ballroom tables were filled to the brim, with the overflow sitting on couches in the area outside near the food trays. The Oriole Bird and Ravens’ Poe mascots worked the room, posing for photos and delivering fist-bumps, high-fives, and hugs.

Brandy Cumberland, who graduated from the School of Nursing’s RN-to-BSN Program, was sitting at a table with her husband and three young children, who were munching on potato chips and enjoying their mom’s special day. The family had made a three-hour drive from Wingate, Md., in southern Dorchester County, to attend all the day’s ceremonies.

“This party is a very, very nice event,” Cumberland said. “We appreciate the University doing this. We’re having a great time.”

Downstairs, the party started cranking up as more graduates arrived between noon and 12:30 p.m. With music provided by Marvin “DJ Marvalous” Ganthier, the dancing continued, with graduates, parents, and even campus center employees taking their turns bopping and swaying. The DJ announced that it was time for graduates to start heading over to the arena for the Universitywide commencement, but first a line dance formed for the song “Cupid Shuffle.”

“This is so much fun,” said Rhiya Dave, who earned a Master’s in Public Health from the School of Medicine and was about to head over to the arena, where she would carry the MPH banner into the ceremony. “It’s a really nice way for all of us to just celebrate and be together one last time.”

School of Pharmacy graduate Mudit Verma was enjoying the music and photo ops, too, and said he was excited to get to the arena to celebrate beside his classmates and all the graduates of the UMB schools. He thought Party in the Park — wherever it was held — was an enjoyable part of the daylong festivities.

“I’m out here with my family, and we’re eating good food and drinks and having a dance party,” he said. “This is such a great time. This has been a great event.”

— Lou Cortina

Visit the commencement website for pictures, video, and more information.

Lou CortinaPeople, UMB News, University LifeMay 18, 20180 comments
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UMB Graduates Told to Make a World of Difference

Outside it was raining but inside Royal Farms Arena sunny smiles were in abundance as students of the Class of 2018 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) received their degrees at commencement ceremonies.

The class of 2,250 students from UMB’s six professional schools and interdisciplinary Graduate School were treated to life lessons from a number of speakers, headlined by Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen, PhD, MSW, an alumna and former faculty member of the University of Maryland School of Social Work.

Sworn in as Peace Corps director in March, a “humbled” Olsen told the graduates to utilize the wide-ranging hands-on lessons they’ve learned at UMB, which confers the majority of health care, human services, and law professional degrees in Maryland each year.

“We prepare briefs for the state legislature and research new, life-sustaining drugs,” Olsen said. “We conduct surgeries and perform root canals; we measure diabetes indicators, counsel drug offenders, and exercise torn muscles. We learn how to manage health bureaucracies and time pressures.

“That’s a lot of doing to help improve people’s lives.”

Olsen has spent decades helping improve people’s lives through the Peace Corps, the country’s pre-eminent international service agency, serving as acting director in 2009, deputy director from 2002 to 2009, chief of staff from 1989 to 1992, regional director of North Africa Near East, Asia, Pacific from 1981 to 1984, and country director in Togo from 1979 to 1981.

“Fortunately for us,” UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD, said in his introduction, “this lifetime of service came with a few hiatuses, and Dr. Olsen spent one of them — an eight-year stint — right here at UMB.

“As director of our Center for Global Education Initiatives, Dr. Olsen came to shape how UMB approaches interprofessional global projects, and how we use the lessons learned overseas to effect change in our own home communities.”

Olsen recalled serving as a Peace Corps volunteer at a maternity clinic in Tunisia when she was 22. “I was focused, innocent, and naive,” she said. “I was charged by the ministry of health with counseling soon-to-be and new mothers with how to care for their children, while having not yet become a mother myself.”

Olsen said she learned a lot from the women, many of whom were raising their families in dwellings with no water, electricity, or sanitation. Those lessons provided a foundation as Olsen traveled to more than 100 countries in the Peace Corps. She used them during her UMB stay as well.

“Do I listen, focusing on each word? Do I take in what is said and not said, and create safety to disengage from fear?” Olsen told the graduates of the lessons she learned. “Do I understand what they are not saying but wish they could? Do I share enough of my own vulnerabilities to demonstrate that I trust them and that they can trust me? Do I ask, pause, and listen for their stories? Do I tell them mine?

“Often our patients or clients come to us afraid, vulnerable, uncertain, and with words and questions that do not make sense to us. Many times, by the point they access the health care system, they are not in comfort, they are in stress. How do we see them as whole people even as we treat a specific problem?”

Such questions apply to all of us, in all our professions, in Baltimore, throughout the United States, and the world, said Olsen, who also related stories from the summer research trips she led UMB students on to Malawi, Central America, and South Asia, stressing interprofessional teamwork among the medical, law, dental, pharmacy, nursing, and social work students.

She urged the graduates to go forth and see the person, not just the problem.

“My hope is that, when your clients and patients are sitting across the desk from you, on the exam table, in the counseling room, in the courtroom beside you, that you’ll see and know the person,” Olsen said. “You’ll know them by name, not by case number. You’ll know them by story, not by diagnosis. You’ll know them not just as they are, but as who they hope to be.

“We are eager to see what you will do, who you will be, and how you will change your community and your world.”

Before Olsen’s encouraging words, James Fielder Jr., PhD, secretary of higher education, and Gary Attman, JD, system treasurer, brought greetings from the governor and the University System of Maryland, respectively. Then Aarti Sidhu, who was graduating from the Carey School of Law, joined the celebration as the student remarker.

“When my parents moved to this country from India almost 40 years ago, they did so to provide better opportunities for me and my siblings,” she told the crowd. “I am so proud to be here surrounded by all of you, from different countries, different racial and cultural backgrounds, and with different gender identities. Despite being told time and time again that we can’t do something because of who we are or what we look like — we did it.”

Sidhu wasn’t the only member of the Class of 2018 featured. The national anthem was sung by the Hippocratic Notes, four graduates of the School of Medicine (Brendan Bui, Joshua Olexa, Grace Lee, and Jennifer Reid), and a video by Courtney Miyamoto, a third-generation graduate of the School of Dentistry, was shown.

The procession into the arena was led by marshals Mary M. Rodgers, PT, PhD, FAPTA, FASB, FISB, and Jill Whitall, PhD, both of the School of Medicine’s Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, and Karen Kauffman, PhD, CRNP, RN, FAAN, retired chair of the Department of Family and Community Health at the School of Nursing.

Four familiar figures at the University received honorary degrees of public service.

Carolyn Frenkil is a community activist, businesswoman, benefactor, and longtime friend of the School of Medicine. Her late husband, James Frenkil, MD, introduced her to the school, which she has supported with a number of innovative endeavors including a course in pharmacogenomics and collaborative research in the school’s Program on Aging, Trauma, and Emergency Care.

Mary Catherine Bunting, MS ’72, CRNP, is an alumna of the School of Nursing who became a nun and nurse practitioner for 34 years and practiced at Mercy Southern Health Center. Granddaughter of the pharmacist who invented Noxzema, she has endowed scholarship support at the school and elsewhere, including Mercy Medical Center.

Fred G. Smith, DDS ’78, MS, and Venice K. Paterakis, DDS ’81, both graduates of the School of Dentistry, have been heavily involved in charitable efforts at UMB, in the city of Baltimore, and beyond. In 2015, the couple established the first endowed professorship at the dental school. (Read more about members of the platform party.)

But in the end, the ceremony was about the graduates, who braved rain that drove their Party in the Park (link) indoors for the first time in its four-year history.

After the diplomas had been distributed, Perman sent the graduates off with a few parting words of advice.

“I wish you hard work and good luck — always — and I ask that you remember your alma mater as you make your mark on the world,” he said. “We’ll look forward to your help. And we’re all so very proud of you.”

— Chris Zang

Visit the commencement website for pictures, video, and more information.

Chris ZangEducation, People, UMB News, University LifeMay 18, 20180 comments
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Third-Generation UMSOD Graduate’s Video Is a Hit

Sitting among the thousands of graduates at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) commencement on May 18 was Courtney Miyamoto, who held two distinctions among the robe-clad crowd: She became a third-generation graduate of the University of Maryland School of Dentistry (UMSOD), and her retrospective video to mark the big day was unveiled during the ceremonies at Royal Farms Arena.

Miyamoto joined her late grandfather Alan Miyamoto, DDS ’62, and father Michael Miyamoto, DDS ’87, as UMSOD alumni. Out in the arena, Michael was brimming with pride as he sat among a group of six family members who traveled from the states of Hawaii, Washington, and Pennsylvania to celebrate Courtney’s commencement. Her grandfather “is with me in spirit,” Miyamoto says.

With her stylish video — shot with a GoPro camera and her cellphone —Miyamoto delivered a message to the graduates of UMB’s six professional schools and interdisciplinary Graduate School: As you step forward, step back, too, and take a moment to reflect on how far you’ve come, which direction you’d like to go, and appreciate the blessings in your life.

“We can get so caught up with life — exams, school requirements, payments, loans — that we can sometimes lose our path,” Miyamoto says. “So I feel that it’s important as we graduate to look at the whole picture: Recognize how far you’ve come, anticipate the next step toward your future goal, be grateful and appreciate those around you, stay humble, and stick with your core values.”

This message provides the tagline to the video, which was met with enthusiastic applause at commencement. Miyamoto, who’s from Kahului, Hawaii, on the island of Maui, put a Hawaiian touch to it, using the phrase E mahalo kakou i ka mea loa’a to end the four-minute presentation — let us be thankful for what we have.

“I danced hula and chanted in Hawaiian back in the day. Hawaiian tradition and culture is a big part of our way of life,” Miyamoto says. “So I wanted to end the video on a note of reflection.”

A Special Week

Commencement and the video unveiling capped a special week for Miyamoto, who on Tuesday was awarded by UMSOD with the Nathan David Gold Memorial Award for conscientious and enthusiastic dedication to clinical practice. “Courtney was selected for this honor by her classmates and faculty, and it is a highly regarded schoolwide award,” said Karen Faraone, DDS, MA, associate dean of student affairs at the school. “She is well-loved among her class.”

Miyamoto’s video takes viewers on a tour of Baltimore landmarks before roving around the UMB campus, with shots of the schools of social work, pharmacy, nursing, law, and medicine, historic Davidge Hall, and more. It follows Courtney and her friends as they skateboard to the School of Dentistry, then takes a spin through UMSOD lecture halls and labs before closing with scenes of students having fun on ski trips and the annual school picnic with faculty and staff.

This was an offshoot of a video Miyamoto produced in 2016 to document life as a second-year dental student, wanting to give Grandpa Miyamoto and students’ families and friends a glimpse of life at today’s dental school. Sadly, her grandfather passed away before it was finished, but Courtney says the video was shown to subsequent incoming UMSOD classes by Andrea Morgan, DDS, the school’s director of student advocacy and cultural affairs.

This year, UMB was looking for a new video to show at the Universitywide commencement, and Faraone approached Miyamoto with the idea to revise her 2016 video and submit it for consideration.

“Dr. Faraone said, ‘This is a great opportunity,’ because she saw my video from second year,” Miyamoto says. “She was the driving force to get me in contact with Vanessa Carroll, secretary of our dean, Mark Reynolds, to help with funding for updated video editing software.”

The dean’s office helped purchase Adobe Premiere Pro software, and Miyamoto worked with the UMB Office of the President to revise her production, which uses the Craves’ pulsating song “By My Side” throughout. The song’s refrain: “I can stand it all and make it go away … with you by my side.”

“This upbeat song was a happy reminder of the memories created in Baltimore and in school,” Miyamoto says. “It portrays a positive message: You can face all the challenges in life with people supporting you along the way. For me, it’s my close friends, family, and of course, Grandpa.”

Miyamoto dedicated the commencement video to her grandfather, who practiced dentistry into his 80s. Her younger sister Lindsey also inspired her.

“Lindsey is exploring her creative side with YouTube and Instagram,” Miyamoto says. “She’s put together some very nice YouTube videos of family get-togethers and fun activities on the weekends in Hawaii. She’s my inspiration.”

Heading Back to Hawaii

Clearly, family is important to Miyamoto, and six members were in attendance on May 18: her father, mother Joyce, sisters Lindsey and Caitlyn, Auntie Keala, and Grandma Miyamoto. Her grandmother, Amy, told Courtney she had been exercising back in Hawaii to get ready for this weekend, so she could walk the Baltimore campus where her late husband studied more than 50 years ago.

The next steps for Courtney? After considering applying for a residency, she’s opted to head back to Hawaii to work in her father’s practice in Wailuku. It’s a full-circle story, as she recalls doing office chores as a teen before working there as a dental assistant, business assistant, and lab technician during a gap year after graduating from the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a bachelor of arts in Biology and a minor in Art in 2013.

“I really missed the family, pets, and Hawaii in general, especially this past third and fourth year,” Miyamoto says. “I visited home last summer and got advice from about six different dentists about plans after dental school. They recommended professional networking, keeping involved with continuing education, and working under the mentorship from my father, so I decided to head back home and join my family’s private practice and another dentist’s practice on the island.”

There, she says she’ll start with general dentistry – fillings, single crowns, bridges, extractions – and plans to one day bring oral health care to underserved populations in Hawaii, fulfilling UMB’s mission to improve the human condition and serve the public good.

“Working in an FQHC [federally qualified health center] during an externship really opened my eyes to working in this area of dentistry one day, or at least helping to provide affordable or free dental services to the underserved,” Miyamoto says. “I’m happy I’m in this field as a career, working with great mentors in improving people’s oral health and lives.”

— Lou Cortina

Visit the commencement website for pictures, video, and more information.

Lou CortinaPeople, UMB News, University LifeMay 18, 20180 comments
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Commencement 2018: Keynote Speaker Jody Olsen

Here’s a look at the keynote speaker for UMB’s commencement on May 18:

Former UMB faculty member Jody Olsen, PhD, MSW, confirmed in March as the director of the Peace Corps, will be the University’s keynote speaker at commencement on May 18.

Olsen has served four previous stints — the most recent in 2001 to 2009 as deputy director and then, for eight months, acting director — with the Peace Corps, the country’s flagship international service organization with more than 230,000 American volunteers assisting in 140 host countries since President John F. Kennedy established it in 1961.

Interested in giving back, Olsen came to UMB in 2010 and became immersed in activities as a visiting professor at the School of Social Work, lecturer at the Graduate School, founding member of UMBrella (UMB Roundtable on Empowerment in Leadership and Leveraging Aspirations), even moderating UMB’s 2017 Women’s History Month panel discussion with community leaders and Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh.

Olsen also kept international affairs close to her heart as director of UMB’s Center for Global Education Initiatives and co-chair of the Global Health Interprofessional Council. She used her deep knowledge of international development (she has traveled to more than 100 countries) and her commitment to interdisciplinary learning to redefine high-quality out-of-country experiences and give UMB students a transformative global education.

She was nominated by President Donald Trump to lead the Peace Corps on Jan. 3. In her remarks before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in February, Olsen focused much of her testimony not on the Peace Corps’ work overseas, but on how Peace Corps volunteers strengthen their home communities once they return from service abroad.

“Returned Peace Corps volunteers bring home unique language, cultural, and diplomatic skills,” she said. “They are true global citizens, contributing to our economy, our country, and the urban and rural communities where they live and work all across the United States.”

She added: “Time and again … I see the remarkable ways that returned Peace Corps volunteers teach, inspire, and strengthen communities back home in the United States.”

The students from across UMB’s schools benefited in much the same way from the four summer research projects in Malawi that Olsen participated in and the student trips she led to Central America and South Asia.

“We’re trying to cultivate a mutually respectful situation to solve problems,” Olsen said in 2014 after 33 students from all seven UMB schools traveled in teams to Rwanda, Kenya, Gambia, Malawi, Zambia, Hong Kong, and the Philippines to work on solutions to community-specific health problems. “The opportunity to do that is a gift. It gives students a head start in a world where we’re increasingly dependent on each other.”

Olsen knew she wanted to work globally during her first few days as the Peace Corps’ country director in Togo. With the ink barely dry on her dissertation — a study of end-of-life satisfaction in elderly populations — Olsen landed in the West African nation with her family. There, she oversaw the work of 135 volunteers.

“I walked into that office and I knew immediately I would stay international,” she said. “I liked the action. I liked leading international teams and creating an environment for people to be successful.”

Now confirmed, Olsen will have the opportunity to do just that for the 7,400 current Peace Corps volunteers. She could face hardships, with the organization perhaps facing 15 percent budget cuts, according to some reports.

But Richard P. Barth, PhD, MSW, dean of the School of Social Work, has no doubts that Olsen will excel.

“Jody Olsen is a tireless champion,” he said. “She is a terrific communicator, relentlessly optimistic and affirming, and exceptionally knowledgeable about all things international.”

Glenn Blumhorst, president and CEO of the National Peace Corps Association, echoed Barth’s praise after the nomination was announced. “America and the world need the Peace Corps now more than ever,” Blumhorst said in a statement. “We’re excited Jody has the opportunity to lead it.”

— Chris Zang

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Chris ZangPeople, UMB News, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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Commencement 2018: Tips for Graduates from Honorary Cast

We asked the commencement keynote speaker, honorary degree recipients, honorary marshals, and student remarker what one piece of advice they would like to pass along to UMB’s Class of 2018. Here are some of their responses:

Jody Olsen, PhD, MSW
Director of Peace Corps
Keynote speaker

“Find your passion and take the risks to achieve it.”

Carolyn Frenkil
Community activist, businesswoman, benefactor
Honorary Doctor of Public Service

“Two pieces of advice come to mind. One, life isn’t fair, but it’s still good. Two, no one is in charge of your happiness except you. You only have one ride through life so make the most of it and enjoy the ride!”

Mary Catherine Bunting, MS ’72, CRNP
Retired nurse practitioner, philanthropist
Honorary Doctor of Public Service

“Do what you love and are passionate about. That is what you will do best and will be able to sustain for a lifetime. Recognize your gifts and your talent so you can use them to the fullest. I did not know that I had dyslexia until after receiving my master’s degree. I did understand that I was a visual learner and liked being active. Nursing was a perfect fit.”

Mary M. Rodgers, PT, PhD, FAPTA, FASB, FISB
Professor emeritus, Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, School of Medicine
Honorary University Marshal

“As the many varied pressures of life increase, I would ask the UMB Class of 2018 to be kind and compassionate. Remember that with all of our individual differences and wonderful diversity, we are all one and we are all human. Kindness is possible in all that we do and compassion is essential to our very existence.”

Karen Kauffman, PhD, CRNP, RN, FAAN
Retired chair, Department of Family and Community Health, School of Nursing
Honorary Faculty Marshal

“Follow your dream — but if the unanticipated occurs, embrace the opportunity to dream bigger, and then let life happen.”

Aarti Sidhu
Francis King Carey School of Law
Student Remarker

“Live life and pursue careers without fear [nirbhau] and without hate [nirvair].”

— Chris Zang

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Chris ZangCollaboration, Education, People, UMB News, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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Commencement 2018: Honorary Degree Recipients

Here’s a look at the honorary degree recipients for UMB’s commencement on May 18:

Fred G. Smith, DDS ’78, MS

Venice K. Paterakis, DDS ’81

Honorary Doctor of Public Service

About Smith and Paterakis: The husband and wife, both graduates of the University of Maryland School of Dentistry, come from prominent Baltimore families and have been heavily involved in charitable efforts at UMB, in the city of Baltimore, and beyond. Smith is vice president and director of Baltimore-based Sinclair Broadcast Group, which owns nearly 200 TV stations across the United States. Paterakis practiced dentistry in the Fells Point/Harbor East area of the city for 33 years and is one of six children in a family that rose to prominence through its H&S Bakery business and more recently has been involved in the development of Harbor East.

Charitable efforts: Smith and Paterakis have been performing acts of kindness for decades, with the goal of their efforts being to improve the human condition and serve the public good. In 2015, the couple donated $1.5 million to establish the first endowed professorship at the School of Dentistry. Smith also serves on the Board of Trustees of the University of Maryland Baltimore Foundation, Inc., among other groups, and Paterakis has been active with the Maryland Ronald McDonald House and supports many other charitable organizations such as Yumi Cares and Horizon Day Camps.

Quote: “Philanthropy and service to the community were values instilled in me at a very young age. I am honored to be involved with the University of Maryland, Baltimore and greatly appreciate this wonderful recognition bestowed on us,” Paterakis says.

Mary Catherine Bunting, MS ’72, CRNP

Honorary Doctor of Public Service

About Bunting: After a serious car accident at age 16 that required a 10-day hospital stay, she gained appreciation for nursing as a career and earned her nursing degree in 1958 at the Mercy Hospital School of Nursing. After a short stint as a labor and delivery nurse, she joined the Sisters of Mercy in 1959, staying in the order until 1974. From 1972 to 1996, she practiced at Mercy Southern Health Center, an outreach center in South Baltimore, and became a nurse practitioner. She retired after a 34-year career at Mercy.

Charitable efforts: Bunting, the granddaughter of George Avery Bunting, a University of Maryland pharmacist who invented Noxzema, which grew into CoverGirl Cosmetics and Noxell Corp, made a major gift in October 2007 as part of Mercy Medical Center’s $400 million capital campaign. The Mary Catherine Bunting Center is a 20-story tower that includes 259 private patient rooms and 15 state-of-the-art operating rooms. She also has donated large sums to fund scholarships and programs at the University of Maryland School of Nursing, where she earned a master’s degree in 1972.

Quote: “I was blessed to come from a family that did not focus on wealth. And I knew that love — not wealth — is what brings joy and happiness,” Bunting says.

Carolyn Frenkil

Honorary Doctor of Public Service

About Frenkil: A businesswoman and community activist, Frenkil is president of Center City, Inc., and 10-30 W North Avenue, LLC, and helps runs the North Avenue Market project, renovation in the Station North Arts and Entertainment District in Baltimore. Before that, she created — and sold — Substance Abuse Services, Inc., which provided drug/alcohol testing of employees in the transportation industry. She was married to James Frenkil, MD, of the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) for 26 years before his death in 2009.

Charitable efforts: The couple’s first major contribution to UMSOM/Faculty Physicians, Inc. was an office building once used by Dr. Frenkil’s occupational medicine practice. They also set up the James and Carolyn Frenkil Foundation. She donated money to purchase equipment/furniture for UMSOM’s Executive Health Program and the school’s new Media Center, and she helped fund a course in pharmacogenomics and supported collaborative research in the medical school’s Program on Aging, Trauma, and Emergency Care, among other gifts.

Quote: “Quite frankly, I can’t imagine anyone not embracing an opportunity to be actively involved with this renowned institution,” Frenkil says of UMB.

More on commencement

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Lou CortinaCollaboration, Education, People, UMB News, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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Commencement 2018: Student Remarker Aarti Sidhu

Here’s a look at the student remarker for UMB’s commencement on May 18:

With an impressive array of internships and leadership roles, Aarti Sidhu gained great experience and enjoyed many accomplishments during her three years at the Francis King Carey School of Law.

But in applying to be the student remarker at UMB’s Commencement — and beating out a half-dozen candidates for the honor — Sidhu stressed that what made her a good candidate to speak to the Class of 2018 wasn’t her résumé but the perspective she brings to the lectern.

“As a minority woman in America, and the child of immigrants, I have overcome many challenges and adversities,” Sidhu says. “At every turn, I’ve learned and grown more, into the woman I am today. And UMB has contributed to this substantially.”

Sidhu’s contributions to UMB were substantial, too, as she turned her beliefs into action by advocating for social change, juvenile justice reform, and fair representation for underserved populations – and going the extra mile to do it. She joined Carey Law’s School-to-Prison Pipeline Clinic (now called the Youth, Education and Justice Clinic) in August 2016 and served for four semesters, well beyond the one-semester requirement.

“I’ve been most inspired in my work there,” says Sidhu, who is allowed to practice law under a supervising professor. “We advocate for youth in schools in Baltimore City. Our goal is to do our part to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline and work to get students the education they deserve.”

Born and raised in Richmond, Va., Sidhu is one of three children of parents who emigrated from India in the 1970s. She earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and psychology from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and worked as a consultant and a paralegal before arriving at Carey Law in 2015.

In Baltimore, she found many outlets to help people:

  • As a legal intern with Disability Rights Maryland, she lobbied for special education rights in the state legislature and advocated for students with disabilities.
  • As an Education Reform Project intern with the ACLU of Maryland, she created policy recommendations for the legislative session to increase funding for Maryland schools.
  • As a volunteer with Community Law in Action, a program of the nonprofit Baltimore Corps, she promoted positive community change through youth mentoring.
  • As a law clerk with Maryland Legal Aid, she supported its Community Lawyering Initiative by planning and implementing direct civil legal services to the community.

“After graduation, I hope to work in juvenile justice and more specifically education,” says Sidhu, who won the Monumental City Bar Association’s Juanita Mitchell Scholarship for her work with underserved populations in Baltimore. “I hope to ensure students are receiving the education they’re entitled to.”

Sidhu also was an active member of the Carey Law community. In her second year, she was chosen as the first chair of the school’s Diversity Committee, a particularly meaningful role because of her passion for diversity and inclusion.

“The committee was created to serve as a liaison to the administration and to work with it to improve our school climate,” says Sidhu, who was an advisor during her third year. “I held a number of events, conducted a schoolwide survey to identify concerns regarding diversity, and set a plan to be carried out in coming years.”

Sidhu also served as secretary of the Black Law Students Association, community outreach co-chair of the Suspension Representation Project, and vice president of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association. She was selected to the school’s 21-member National Trial Team and was manuscripts editor of the University of Maryland Law Journal of Race, Religion, Gender, and Class.

Sidhu says she couldn’t have taken on these tasks without many other helping hands — “I’m thankful to my support system and those who challenged me and laughed with me,” she says — and leaves her fellow graduates with a simple message:

“Pursue your passions, stay true to yourself, and be kind.”

— Lou Cortina

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Lou CortinaBulletin Board, Education, Global & Community Engagement, People, UMB News, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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Commencement 2018: Honorary Marshals

Here’s a look at the honorary marshals for UMB’s commencement on May 18:

Mary M. Rodgers, PT, PhD, FAPTA, FASB, FISB

Professor Emeritus, Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, School of Medicine

Honorary University Marshal 

About Rodgers: Rodgers joined the faculty of the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) in 1994 and found a home in the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, teaching biomechanics and conducting research. She was appointed department chair in 1998 and provided leadership and stewardship for 15 years. During this time, the department rose from unranked to the top 10 percent of all physical therapy programs in the country. She retired in 2017 and is now professor emeritus.

Research: Rodgers is director of the Pilot and Exploratory Studies Core for the Maryland Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center at UMB. She also has held a number of research and education advisory positions, including senior advisor for the National Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering of the National Institutes of Health for the past eight years.

Quote: “I am very excited for all of these graduates who have worked so hard to complete their programs and are now ready to launch into valuable careers,” Rodgers says.

Karen Kauffman, PhD, CRNP, RN, FAAN

Retired Chair, Department of Family and Community Health, School of Nursing

Honorary Faculty Marshal 

About Kauffman: After two decades in acute care nursing, Kaufmann worked as a University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON) faculty member from 1995 to 1998. She left to start Life Passages Care Consultants, Inc., a long-term care consultation practice for older adults and their families dealing with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, then returned to UMSON in 2003 as the specialty director for community/public health nursing. She became chair of the Department of Family and Community Health in 2007 and retired in December 2017.

Public Service: Her dedicated service in the public sector has made a profound difference locally, nationally, and internationally for those struggling with Alzheimer’s disease, a condition Kauffman witnessed firsthand for over 20 years while caring for her mother. She has been a national and chapter leader of the Alzheimer’s Association and won many public service awards, including UMB’s 2014 Public Servant of the Year.

Quote: “For me, serving as honorary faculty marshal for the 2018 commencement is truly the capstone to my many rewarding years in the academy,” Kauffman says. 

Jill Whitall, PhD

Professor Emeritus, Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, School of Medicine

Honorary Student Marshal

About Whitall: A native of Windlesham, England, Whitall spent six years in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, before joining UMSOM in 1994. She handled several administrative roles, including director of the PhD program, and taught/mentored students in the PhD graduate and Doctor of Physical Therapy professional programs. She is now professor emeritus after retiring in January 2018.

Research: Whitall attracted several million dollars in funding during her UMSOM tenure from agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Aging, Department of Veterans Affairs, Maryland Industrial Partnerships, and more. Her primary research focus for the last 20 years was on improving bimanual and gait rehabilitation for individuals with stroke by using motor control and learning principles to develop new treatment programs, testing these interventions, and trying to understand principles of recovery.

Quote: “I respect the tradition of graduation ceremonies, so I’m surprised and pleased to be asked to take part,” Whitall says.

More on commencement

Read more about the commencement speakers and honorees and about all the commencement festivities.

Lou CortinaCollaboration, Education, People, UMB News, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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Quantum Financials Town Hall Set for June 4

The second Quantum Financials Town Hall will be held Monday, June 4, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the Elm Ballroom at the SMC Campus Center. If you would like to learn more about the development of UMB’s new financial system, please plan to attend.

Executive sponsors, project managers, and other project team members will be on hand to share updates about the project and provide attendees a peek at the new financials application. If you want to submit specific questions ahead of time, please send them to the team at

Everyone is welcome to attend.

Robin ReidTechnology, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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Graduate Students Give Voice to Universal Health Care Debate

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on Inside SOP, the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy’s blog. It is reprinted here with permission.

On April 24, two teams composed of graduate students from the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and the Department of Pharmaceutical Health Services Research (PHSR) at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy engaged in a professional dialogue about the advantages and disadvantages of the Medicare Access for All Bill (HR 676) proposed to Congress in 2015, which would mandate that all individuals residing in the U.S., including any territories, be covered under the Medicare for All Program, entitling them to a universal, best quality standard of health care. The debate was motivated by recent political discussions, which have strongly argued for health care to be recognized as a human right.

While some proponents of the bill are in favor of moving to a single-payer national health care program to help resolve America’s health care crisis, others have expressed concerns about having a single-payer health care system. For example, the annual report published by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in 2015 revealed that its Part A trust fund (hospital insurance) will be exhausted in the next 15 years. This would, in turn, lead to a cut in benefits and increased payroll taxes or a diversion of funds from the rest of the federal budget to cover the nation’s health care.

Analyzing the Issue from All Sides

In light of these discussions, the student chapters of the International Society of Pharmacoepidemiology (ISPE) and the International Society of Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR) at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) organized a formal discussion around this topic and gained insights from participants, judges, and the audience on potential ways to advance health care in the United States.

The participants were required to debate on two key aspects of the bill:

  • Eligibility criteria and covered health services
  • Financing for the program

The debate was conducted such that each team delivered its opening statement, which was followed by  arguments for or against the eligibility requirements and costs that this bill would incur or save. The teams also had an opportunity to rebut the opposing side’s argument. The debate ended with each team delivering a closing statement.

The debate was judged by local leaders in health policy, including:

  • Lauren Wagner, PhD, MS, deputy director of clinical quality management for the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Part A and Minority AIDS Initiative Program at the Baltimore City Health Department
  • Raimee Eck, MPH, MPA, PhD, CPH, president of the Maryland Public Health Association (MdPHA)
  • Ryan Mutter, PhD, assistant professor of health economics at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)

In addition, the audience had an opportunity to submit paper ballots with their vote for the team they thought won the debate. The three judges used this feedback, along with their own insight, to select the winning team.

Putting Forth a Persuasive Argument

Team A — which included Chigoziem Oguh, Rachana Regmi, and Christina Greene, graduate students in the Department of Epidemiology at the School of Medicine — was in favor of the bill. Their key arguments addressed improving what it called a “disjointed” health care system, including coverage for mental health and substance abuse care, which can vary by state, and moving toward a more streamlined national health care system. The premise of their argument was that uniform access to care would help reduce disparities and ultimately improve health outcomes.

Team B — which included Martin Calabrese, Kyungwan Hong, and Bansri Desai, graduate students in the PhD in PHSR Program at the School of Pharmacy — opposed the bill. Their key argument was that the bill could lead to a decline in quality of health care with no impetus for innovation. They insisted that the bill provided few specifics on exactly how a “Medicare for all” system would be implemented and funded. For example, would such a generous health care system lead to increased taxes for U.S. citizens? Of note, Team B was not opposed to the concept of a national health care system; however, it thought that this bill lacked important details about the implementation of such a system, and thus, it could not support it without the aforementioned issues being addressed.

Lessons from which Everyone Can Benefit

At the end of the debate, Team B was deemed the winner based on the judges’ decisions and input from the audience poll.

Through this debate, the UMB student chapters of ISPE and ISPOR aimed to encourage discussion and conversation as tools for shaping a health care system that can be beneficial for all stakeholders. The event also served as a platform for participants and audience members to network with local leaders in health policy.  

However, we would be remiss not to acknowledge that discussions about issues like Medicare for all, free-market health care, and the Affordable Care Act all seek to address the same issue — financing health care for all U.S. citizens. Our country needs fresh conversation on how to repair our health care system, and a system that can simplify health care delivery and provide all individuals with access to basic health care services at a reasonable cost will win the day.

— Aakash Gandhi, PHSR graduate student, vice president of the UMB ISPE student chapter, and secretary of the UMB ISPOR chapter

Aakash GandhiEducation, University Life, USGAMay 16, 20180 comments
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Seeking Participants to Screen for Elevated Blood Sugar Levels

Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine want to learn about the use of a commercially available dietary supplement for men and women who are prediabetic.

This study may be a good fit if you are:

  • Male or female, 18 years of age or older
  • Prediabetic determined by elevated blood glucose or HbA1c (possible risk factors for prediabetes include being overweight, inactive, and family history)

Participants who take part in the screening will receive $25 for their time (additional payment if eligible and enrolled in the research study).

If you decide to take part in the screening for this research, you would:

  • Attend one visit to have a fasting blood sample drawn to determine your glucose level
  • Have the opportunity to enroll in the study if eligible
  • Once enrolled, attend two 45-minute appointments over 12 weeks
  • Have bloodwork completed at both appointments
  • Participate in a short phone call midway through the study
  • Take four dietary supplement capsules per day for 12 weeks

Contact information

Mary Bahr-Robertson
Phone: 410-706-6155

The principal investigator for this study is Chris D’Adamo, PhD

Deborah TaberResearch, University LifeMay 16, 20180 comments
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