WVSOM’s Rural Practice Day Focuses on Improving Emotional Health
The West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM) brought alumni of disparate backgrounds together for its 11th annual Rural Practice Day, which took place February 11 on the school’s Lewisburg campus. Rural Practice Day, hosted by WVSOM’s Rural Health Initiative, is intended to educate WVSOM students about what it’s like to practice in rural communities and to encourage students to work in rural areas after completing medical school.
“In West Virginia we currently have 62 medically underserved areas and more than 100 health professional shortage areas. These are areas that don’t have adequate primary care physicians, have high infant mortality rates, high poverty and high rates of elderly people,” said Linda Boyd, DO, WVSOM’s vice president for academic affairs and dean. “One of the most important factors in improving healthcare in medically underserved areas is putting a primary care doctor in that area. It improves health outcomes tremendously, and that’s what our mission is at WVSOM.”
The keynote speaker was Pat Browning, DO, a WVSOM Class of 2000 alumna and former primary care physician who lost two daughters to substance use disorder. She spoke about how social stigma surrounding the disorder can lead physicians to lose their clinical judgment, resulting in a lower quality of care. Read more about the event’s topics and featured speakers.
Journey to Becoming TUCOM-CA SDOY Has Been Long, Enriching
Becoming a physician is not as simple as it can sometimes seem—you graduate from college and then put in four more years at medical school. For Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine – California (TUCOM-CA) Student Doctor of the Year Samaneh Bolourchi, the road to this accolade has been a difficult but rewarding one.
The doors along her path weren’t always easy to open, but the lessons of her hard-working immigrant parents helped her push through those difficulties.
“Persistence and determination were qualities my parents emulated in building their life here as immigrants from Iran,” Bolourchi said. “I am the first woman in my family who has even had the opportunity to study medicine. I am grateful for and motivated by the sacrifices that were made to afford me these experiences.” Read more about Bolourchi’s journey through medical school.
ATSU-KCOM’s National Center for Osteopathic Principles and Practice Education to Host Course
A.T. Still University-Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (ATSU-KCOM)’s National Center for Osteopathic Principles and Practice Education is hosting a four-day introduction to osteopathic manipulative medicine for DOs and MDs in May.
The course is designed for MD students and residents entering Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education osteopathic-recognized programs and for MD attendings who precept and supervise residents in Osteopathic Recognition programs. Additionally, the course serves as a refresher for DO students, residents and teaching faculty who want to sharpen their skills and knowledge while learning about osteopathic principles and practice, soft tissue, counterstrain and muscle energy techniques and segmental diagnosis for the thoracic and lumbar spine. Read more about the course and view registration details.
ATSU-SOMA Students Provide Help to San Diego Homeless Community
Photo: ATSU-SOMA student and Student Homeless Aid Relief Project President Sam Adllirad, OMS III.
A.T. Still University-School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (ATSU-SOMA) students are continuing to live the University’s mission of service to the underserved. ATSU-SOMA students at the community health center distributed handmade peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, as well as snacks and water, and delivered them personally to homeless individuals in need in downtown San Diego and Rachel’s Women’s Center, a San Diego women’s homeless shelter. Read more about the community event.
UNTHSC/TCOM Student Selected for Prestigious MSTAR Fellowship
University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth - Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (UNTHSC/TCOM) student Imran Rashik, OMS III, was one of just 13 medical students from across the nation to be selected for the prestigious National Medical Students Training in Aging Research (MSTAR) Fellowship. Rashik will spend eight weeks this summer at the UNC School of Medicine’s Center for Aging and Health, working in a structured research, clinical and didactic program.
“After getting the offer of acceptance, I thought that I received a great opportunity to broaden my research interests,” said Rashik. “Moreover, I felt grateful for having an amazing support system in my life. I have a loving wife who has supported me through all of my struggles in medical school and encouraged me to pursue my research interests ever since my first year in UNTHSC/TCOM.” Read more about Rashik and the MSTAR fellowship.
AZCOM/MWU Holds Events to Benefit St. Mary’s Food Bank
Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine of Midwestern University (AZCOM/MWU) volunteers recently spent a day at St. Mary’s Food Bank, packing and loading canned food for distribution to Arizona’s population in need. Much of the canned food was provided by a creative campus food drive, where AZCOM/MWU collected canned items from students in exchange for leftover stock of men’s and women’s scrubs, t-shirts, books and other school supplies.
CHSU-COM Students Recognized for Inspiring Local High School Students
Photo: CHSU-COM students Nurit Hirsh and Carter Yang introduce high school students in a Medical Careers class to patient care skills.
California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic Medicine (CHSU-COM) students from the Valley Mentors student organization were recognized in the local news for helping mentor the next generation of medical professionals.
Focused on addressing the need for more physicians in the Central Valley, CHSU-COM medical students visited Clovis East High School in early February. They demonstrated patient care skills, like taking vitals and applying a splint, to 72 high school students interested in pursuing a medical career.
This was the fourth time that the Valley Mentors at CHSU-COM provided Clovis East students in Dr. Kelly Eichmann’s Patient Care Pathway course with hands-on demonstrations of patient care skills. Read more about the event and local coverage.
RVUCOM’s Dr. Jacqueline Powell Honored with Element Award
Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine (RVUCOM) is pleased to announce that Jacqueline Powell, PhD, associate professor of physiology, has been selected as one of the recipients of the St. George Area Chamber of Commerce Element Award. The award honors women who are “generating major social and economic contributions in the Washington County Area,” and more specifically, women who have “exhibited significant leadership and demonstrated courage in the face of adversity.”
In just two-and-a-half years, Dr. Powell has made an indelible mark on the RVUCOM community. She is not only passionate about helping students become critical thinkers and life-long learners, but has also supported RVUCOM South Utah’s efforts in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) as the Chair of the DEI Committee and as the faculty advisor for the Asian Pacific American Medical Student Association. Additionally, in 2021, she chaired the University-wide DEI Climate Task Force, which presented over 70 tangible and meaningful action items to support the University’s core value of diversity. Read more about Dr. Powell and her contributions to RVUCOM.
Villegas Awarded PCOM’s Student DO of the Year
Monica Anne Faye Villegas has been recognized as the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) Student DO of the Year. This recognition is sponsored by AACOM’s Council of Osteopathic Student Government Presidents (COSGP). The Student DO of the Year award honors and recognizes an osteopathic medical student who is committed to the principles of leadership, community service, dedication and professionalism. Ms. Villegas will go on to compete for the Student DO of the Year against colleges of osteopathic medicine across the country, including PCOM-Georgia and PCOM-South Georgia, for the National SDOY award.
In her interview, Ms. Villegas shares her journey to medical school and the many ways she has given back to the PCOM community and beyond. Read the full interview.
Bautista-Whitaker Named PCOM Georgia's Student DO of the Year
Jaymi Bautista-Whitaker has been named PCOM Georgia Campus (PCOM-Georgia)’s Student DO of the Year based on her leadership, commitment to community service, dedication to the profession, professionalism and embodiment of the osteopathic philosophy. The award is presented annually to a student who distinguishes themselves among their peers. The selection committee was made up of students and faculty members led by DO Council President Alex Christianson.
Currently Bautista-Whitaker serves as one of four leaders of the Atlanta Foothills Rotation Site for PCOM-Georgia and PCOM-South Georgia students. Among other activities, she has served as the 2020-2021 DO Council president, the wellness committee director for COSGP and the co-founder of the Pachacutec Project in Lima and Ventanilla, Peru. Read the full interview.
Therapy Dogs Bring ‘Paws’itivity During Finals Week at ICOM
Photo: Hannah Firth, OMS II, pets Solo, a Newfoundland.
As student-doctors at the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine (ICOM) wrapped up their final exams, they were visited by a group of four-legged friends. A team of therapy dogs from Go Team Therapy Dogs of Idaho, the local chapter of a national non-profit organization, visited ICOM’s Meridian campus to provide stress relief and emotional support.
“The second-year students are in the middle of finals week and the first-year students will have final exams next week,” said Michal Kozdronkiewicz, OMS I. “Everyone is busy cramming for exams and hitting the books, so it’s nice to have the dogs here to help us de-stress a little bit.” See more photos and share this story on ICOM’s Facebook.
DO Student Produces Parent’s Guide to ‘Reading Diversely’
Katie Doerner, a second-year student at Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine (DMU-COM), has known she wanted to work with kids since, as she jokes, she realized a career as a professional basketball player wasn’t in the cards. She is the Midwest district representative for the Section on Pediatric Trainees (SOPT) of the American Academy of Pediatrics, which strives to enable aspiring pediatricians to be strong advocates for the health and well-being of all children.
Every year, SOPT organizes an advocacy campaign around a topic relevant to children’s health. To support this year’s topic, “Rx Against Racism,” Katie and classmate Gabby Duncan, the leader of the DMU Medical Humanities Society’s book club, developed “A Parent’s Guide to Reading Diversely,” a brochure that provides resources and recommendations to help parents find ways to “integrate diverse books and learning into their children’s lives.” Read more about the guide and the inspiration behind its creation.