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PCOM South Georgia Ribbon-Cutting, RVUCOM Incoming Students Provide Hygiene Kits for the Homeless, and More in Campus Roundup

July 23, 2019

ACOM Hosts Science Camp for Youth

The Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM) hosted the college’s annual Science Camp, which provides youth from the Wiregrass with the opportunity to learn more about science and health care through immersive and other hands-on activities. The theme of this year’s camp is “Health, Wellness, and the Five Senses.” Up to 225 middle and high school youth (boys and girls) are participating in the camp this year. ACOM Science Camp is generously funded by the Southeast Health Foundation.

After Mom’s Gift of Body, ATSU-KCOM Alumnus Writes Heartfelt Letter to Incoming Class

When the mother of A. T. Still University Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (ATSU-KCOM) alumnus Zach Brown, DO, ’03, realized what an impact anatomy lab had on her son’s decision to become a surgeon, she made a promise: upon her death, she would donate her body to the school’s anatomy program. Last year, she fulfilled that wish. Now, her son has a touching message for the future physicians of ATSU-KCOM:

Dear ATSU Class of 2021: 18 years ago I was standing in your shoes, preparing to unzip the bag for the first time and meet my cadaver. For many of you, this will be the first time you have seen a deceased human. You may feel trepidation, excitement, fear, or other emotions of anticipation. But I want to also suggest another feeling you should consider: gratitude. Read more.

BCOM Future Physicians to Receive and Don First White Coats

One hundred and sixty-two new medical students at the Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine (BCOM) will receive and don their very first white coats at the 2019 White Coat Ceremony on Friday, July 26. The annual event is held to honor and welcome the college’s latest class of medical students.

The White Coat Ceremony is a traditional rite of passage for entering medical students. The event signifies a student’s acceptance into medical school and his or her commitment to compassionate patient care. After being robed with their first coats at the event, students will recite an oath acknowledging their dedication to patients.

BCOM’s Class of 2023 is made up of 82 women and 80 men. Thirty percent of the class members are considered underrepresented minorities, while nearly a quarter come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Twenty-three incoming students hale from New Mexico or El Paso County. Read more and view three profiles of incoming BCOM students.

Campbell Medicine Receives North Carolina Biotech Grant

CUSOM_CR_07250219Kassim Traore, PhD, chair and professor of biochemistry and genetics at the Campbell University Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine (CUSOM), and Amy Hinkelman, PhD, assistant professor of microbiology and immunology, have been awarded the North Carolina Biotechnology Institutional Development Grant for an ACEA NovoCyte 3005 Flow Cytometer.

Flow cytometers allow researchers to detect and measure physical and chemical characteristics of a population of cells or particles. The NovoCyte offers a high degree of flexibility, and it provides complex cell analysis capabilities.

“The new flow cytometer has a powerful impact,” said Dr. Hinkelman. “We can zero in on specific single cells, many of which can be very rare, while still gathering all of the data from the other types of cells.” Read more.

Chet Burrell, MPA, Named Chairman of ICOM's Board of Trustees

ICOM_CR07250219Chet Burrell, MPA, has been named Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine (ICOM), where he has served as a member of the board since 2016. He follows John Goodnow, MHSA, the Founding Chair of ICOM, who will remain a member of the board, but who has decided to step down as Chair.

“Mr. Burrell is an outstanding leader, deeply thoughtful on issues related to education and health care, and a highly respected voice on many critical matters,” said Tracy J. Farnsworth, EdD, MHSA, MBA, FACHE, ICOM President. “It is a stellar endorsement of ICOM’s mission to have Mr. Burrell lead our board.”

Chet Burrell, the father of ICOM’s Founder, Daniel Burrell, JD, has served for over 40 years as the Chair or CEO of many health care companies and organizations in the public, non-profit and for-profit sectors.  Most recently he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of CareFirst BlueCross Blue Shield—the largest health insurer and health benefit services company in the Mid-Atlantic region, covering 3.4 million members in Maryland, the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia. 

“Our aspiration for ICOM is that it serves the needs of Idaho and the five state Mountain West by helping to educate high quality physicians of the future—particularly in primary care and with a special focus on service in medically underserved areas,” Burrell said. “I am proud to serve along with Dan, John and a dedicated Board of Trustees, President Farnsworth, and a superb faculty in helping to make this dream a reality.” Read more.

NSU-KPCOM Students Provide Medical Outreach in Cuba

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In June, Elaine M. Wallace, DO, MS, MS, MS, MS, Dean of Nova Southeastern University Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine (NSU-KPCOM), accompanied 16 students to Santa Clara, Cuba, for a weeklong internship in collaboration with the Universidad of Ciencias Médicas de Villa Clara. This marked the first time medical students from the United States were allowed to visit the Cuban school.

NSU-KPCOM students had the opportunity to work alongside Cuban faculty members, residents, and medical students in three different teaching hospitals and assist with cases associated with pediatrics, internal medicine, OB-GYN, dermatology, ear, nose, and throat, and ophthalmology.

They also had a chance to work directly with patients, assist with births and eye surgeries, participate in hospital rounds, and attend lectures. The experience was an extremely fulfilling one that allowed the students to truly immerse themselves in the Cuban culture.

PCOM and Area Health Leaders to Assess Acquisition of St. Christopher's Hospital for Children

Four Philadelphia-based academic health care organizations—Einstein Healthcare Network, Jefferson Health, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM), and Temple Health—today announced the creation of a consortium to collectively negotiate with American Academic Health System (AAHS) the purchase of St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children and its assets.

The 188-bed teaching hospital was included in a recent voluntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, along with Hahnemann University Hospital, by parent company Philadelphia Academic Health System, a subsidiary of AAHS.

The four consortium institutions intend to submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) to AAHS for the purpose of enabling St. Christopher’s to continue its mission of caring for the underserved children of our community. St. Christopher’s has one of the country’s busiest emergency departments for children, as well as a network of primary and specialty care locations throughout the Philadelphia suburbs and New Jersey. All consortium institutions have academic affiliations with St. Christopher’s, either for training physicians, nurses or other allied health professions.

“In a time of difficult transition for health care in Philadelphia, four health care organizations stepping up to do what’s right by St. Christopher’s patients is truly emblematic of neighbors helping neighbors,” said Achintya Moulick, MD, MCh, MBA, Chief Medical Officer at St. Christopher as well as chairman of Cardiothoracic Surgery. “This will ensure continuity of care and service to the children of the community it serves, especially the underserved population. The faculty, staff, and medical leadership at St. Christopher’s hospital will be thrilled with the possibilities this could hold for the future of the hospital and allow them to continue delivering excellent care to the patients that come through the doors of this hospital.” Read more.

Governor Brian Kemp to Speak at PCOM South Georgia Ribbon-Cutting on August 6

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With a greatly anticipated step in the accreditation process completed, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine South Georgia (PCOM South Georgia)’s leadership team is planning a ribbon-cutting ceremony which will take place on August 6, 2019 at 2:00 PM ET. Georgia Governor Brian Kemp has confirmed that he will address attendees as the first four-year medical school in Southwest Georgia opens its doors.

PCOM South Georgia consists of a 75,000 square foot facility on a 31-acre campus led by 30 faculty and staff members. The campus, located in Moultrie, GA, will welcome 55 doctor of osteopathic medicine students to orientation on August 5 with classes starting on August 12.

More than three years in the planning and construction stages, PCOM South Georgia is the culmination of a mission to bring more physicians to the area.

Jay Feldstein, DO, President and CEO of Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) said, “We are very happy to be partnering in the region to bring our 120 years of experience in educating physicians and health sciences professionals to Southwest Georgia.” Read more.

Four Heritage College Students Named Schweitzer Fellows

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Photo (from left to right): Princess Emeana, Jaime Freiburger, Erika Niewald and Aiesha Polakampalli.

Four medical students at the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (OU-HCOM) have been named fellows for 2019-2020 by the Columbus-Athens chapter of the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship. The fellowships will support the students as they create and carry out a yearlong service project to address unmet health needs. Named as fellows are Princess Emeana, Heritage College, Athens; Jaime Freiburger, Heritage College, Cleveland; Erika Niewald, Heritage College, Dublin; and Aiesha Polakampalli, Heritage College, Athens. Their projects, created in partnership with community organizations, include improving the health of seniors, teaching high school students how to act as first responders in a mass casualty, reducing poverty-related stress, and improving health literacy among incarcerated women. Read more.

RVUCOM’s Incoming Class Provides Hygiene Kits for the Homeless

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As part of their Service Day Project, Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine (RVUCOM)’s class of 2023 students organized into teams and put together hygiene kits for the homeless. The kits were donated to The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, a non-profit organization that provides integrated housing, health care, vocational and support services for the homeless, and The Gathering Place, the only daytime drop-in center in metropolitan Denver that serves women, their children, and transgender individuals who are experiencing poverty or homelessness.

By addressing an individual’s basic needs through hygiene kits, the class of 2023 will help those in need to avoid preventable diseases and boost their self-esteem. The items included in the hygiene kits were specifically selected with those needs in mind, such as toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, safety razors, and shaving cream. The kits also included handwritten notes with words of encouragement.

TUCOM-CA Student Chosen as Gold Fellow

The Arnold P. Gold Foundation has selected eight medical students to be Gold Student Summer Fellows for 2019. Among the students chosen was Touro University California College of Osteopathic Medicine (TUCOM-CA) third-year dual degree DO/MPH student, Katherine Ku. Ku will expand on her program combating negative health effects commonly found in previously incarcerated individuals, which she began through a fellowship with The Albert Schweitzer Foundation.

Last year, Ku established her initial work through the Bay Area chapter of The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship and implemented a program of gentle yoga, guided meditation, and group discussion and reflection to address anxiety and PTSD in the previously incarcerated in partnership with La Clínica de La Raza and The House of Acts. She hopes to add a photovoice project to her program that adds the patient’s voice into action at the community, clinic, and individual levels. Read more.

UNE COM Celebrates 40 Years

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Photo: UNE President James Herbert, PhD, poses with current UNE COM students at the 40th Anniversary Gala

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine (UNE COM) commemorated 40 years of being Maine’s only osteopathic medical school with a Gala Celebration on June 29, 2019. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the completion of classes for the first inaugural class of just 36 students.

Held at the recently constructed Danielle Ripich Commons on the banks of the Saco River Estuary, over 150 guests, dressed in bow ties and boat shoes, reflected the quasi-nautical theme of the evening. Set against the backdrop of the Atlantic coastline, a live band played tunes spanning 40 years to the delight of alumni from the first class through currently enrolled students. Alumni and friends along with current COM faculty, staff, and students shared stories of the past and hopes for the future. In just 40 years, UNE COM has grown to graduating 178 students this past spring and continues to expand more than just its physical footprint in the areas of technology, curriculum development, clinical clerkships, interprofessional education, and more. UNE COM looks forward to continuing to grow its impact in Maine, New England, and beyond.

Just Say KNOW! Teaches High School Students about Anatomy

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It’s not often that a high school student gets to experience the awe-inspiring feeling of holding a human heart. Besides the obvious educational value, touching the muscle tissue and seeing the organ’s chambers, valves, and vessels promotes immense respect for the complexity of the body and the sanctity of life.

At the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine’s (WVSOM) Just Say KNOW! to Anatomy summer camp, which took place June 24-28, seeing human organs firsthand was just one of many activities young learners participated in.

For one week each summer, Just Say KNOW! turns the school’s campus into a place where high-schoolers take part in labs, lectures, and exciting hands-on projects centered on a particular theme. Open to ninth- through twelfth-graders and recent high school graduates, the program is designed to introduce young people to topics related to medicine.

Allie Douglas, a student who just completed 10th grade at Herbert Hoover High School in Elkview, WV, said the camp will help her reach her goal of becoming a doctor.

“You can read about the body in books or see it online, but to actually see it in person and to touch it is completely different,” she said. “I’ve had a lot of fun and learned so much—getting to work with a human donor was amazing. I wanted to broaden my understanding of the human body, and this has exceeded my expectations.”


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Vol. 3, No. 12
July 25, 2019