Jan 282013


By ECU News Services

Sunday, January 27, 2013

East Carolina University is one of a handful of schools nationwide that is participating in a program to recruit and retain minority dental students.

The ECU School of Dental Medicine, working with N.C. A&T State University, will focus on minority students through the Dental Pipeline National Learning Institute.

Introduced by the American Dental Education Association in partnership with the University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, the institute is a new training program dedicated to increasing recruitment and retention among underserved student communities at dental schools.

Nine other U.S. universities are participating in the program with the goal of creating a diverse workforce of dentists who understand the oral health care needs of patients from underserved populations. ECU began work on the project in October.

Participating schools will receive $12,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, along with other support and resources such as access to online courses and fundraising tutorials.

ECU, N.C. A&T, the Old North State Dental Society and North Carolina’s historically black colleges and universities will collaborate to implement the project. This project builds on ECU’s commitment to meeting health needs of diverse and underserved communities and on N.C. A&T’s record of educating students who are prepared to assume leadership roles in their professions and communities.

Other dental schools participating in the NLI include the Georgia Health Sciences University College of Dental Medicine, the Harvard School of Dental Medicine and the Indiana University School of Dentistry.

The Dental Pipeline effort is based on the concept that dental institutions can address the access-to-dental-care crisis by recruiting and admitting more students who come from underserved student communities, increasing cultural competency of all students and educating dental students through community rotations in health centers and other safety net dental settings, such as ECU’s community service learning centers. These principles served as the basis of a decade-long nationwide effort among dental schools and community partners that has positively impacted dental education and access to care.

Students interested in learning more about the ECU program can receive updates via the dental school’s Facebook page. They also may contact the ECU dental school admissions office at sodmadmissions@ecu.edu.

More information on the Dental Pipeline National Learning Institute is online at http://www.adea.org/PipelineNLI.


Renaissance expert to lecture on Feb. 7 

ECU visiting professor  Gary A. Stringer, scholar of English Renaissance literature, will share details about the first collected edition of John Donne’s poems during a free public lecture at 7 p.m. on Feb. 7 in Room 1031 of the Bate Building on campus. A reception will follow.

Stringer will examine the volume of John Donne poetry published two years after Donne’s death. The lecture is titled, “The Making of the 1633, ‘Poems, by J.D. with Elegies on the Author’s Death,’ An Illustrated Detective Story.”

He will highlight the condition in which Donne left the poems at his death, the print environment out of which this volume of poems emerged, the credentials of the publisher, the obscurity surrounding the origins of the publication venture and identification of the various manuscripts used in assembling the collection. He will illustrate points in the presentation with visuals of 17th century books and manuscripts.

Stringer joined the ECU faculty in 2011 as a visiting professor in the Department of English and as the David Julian and Virginia Suther Whichard Distinguished Professor in the Humanities, housed in the Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences. The Whichard Professorship, which Stringer now holds for a second academic year, is endowed through a donation by the Whichard family.

Since Stringer’s research is supported primarily by a National Endowment for the Humanities grant, he has redirected some research funds provided through the Whichard endowment to other projects.

“By the time my two years are up, Whichard funds will have supported in whole, or in part, visits to ECU by six outside scholars, three creative writers, three filmmakers and the chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities,” Stringer said. “I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to help support endeavors like these, which contribute to the intellectual and cultural life of the community.”

Stringer received his doctorate, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in English from the University of Oklahoma. In a nearly 50-year academic career, he has held faculty appointments at the University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma State University, Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, the University of Southern Mississippi and Texas A&M University.

For more information about the lecture, call Denise Miller a 328-6053.

Research could lead to advances against Alzheimer’s, cancer

Research by a team at ECU could help lead to a better understanding of how individual cells perform certain tasks and could have implications for Alzheimer’s disease, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other conditions.

Dr. Qun Lu, a professor of anatomy and cell biology at the Brody School of Medicine at ECU, said his team’s discovery of a chemical compound involved in cell signaling and a potential small molecule drug lead that could affect the action of a type of protein “provides a potentially powerful tool for research … in human pathogenesis.”

Lu’s research is published in the current issue of The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. An abstract of the study, titled “Small Molecule Targeting Cdc42-Intersectin Interaction Disrupts Golgi Organization and Suppresses Cell Motility,” is available online at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23284167.

ECU doctoral student Amy Friesland is a co-first author of this article. Lu collaborated with the laboratories of Dr. Yan-Hua Chen in the ECU Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology of Brody School of Medicine as well as with scientists in China. The study is funded in part by grants of nearly $1.2 million from the National Cancer Institute and by the Harriet and John Wooten Laboratory for Alzheimer’s and Neurodegenerative Diseases Research at ECU.

Upcoming events

Tuesday: Art as Avocation: Opening reception for an exhibition by ECU Dr. Anthony Breuer, a local neurologist and artist; 4:30-6 p.m., Evelyn Fike Laupus Gallery, 4th floor Laupus Library. Exhibit on display Jan. 29-March 12. Free and open to the public.

Thursday: Dance 2013, featuring choreography by ECU faculty, guest artist John Magnus and the North River Dance Company; 8 p.m. nightly, Jan. 31-Feb. 5 in McGinnis Theatre. Tickets are $12.50 for adults, $10 for students, available online at www.ecuarts.com.

via The Daily Reflector.


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