Aug 192014
 

Incoming ECU medical students named Brody Scholars are, left to right, Ismail Kassim of High Point, Alyssa D¹Addezio of Concord and Zachary Sutton of Pink Hill.Incoming ECU medical students named Brody Scholars are, left to right, Ismail Kassim of High Point, Alyssa D¹Addezio of Concord and Zachary Sutton of Pink Hill.

Three incoming students at East Carolina University’s Brody School of Medicine have been named Brody Scholars for the Class of 2018.

Alyssa D’Addezio of Concord, Ismail Kassim of High Point and Zachary Sutton of Pink Hill will receive four years of medical school tuition, living expenses and the opportunity to design their own summer enrichment program that can include travel abroad. The award will also support community service projects the students may undertake while in medical school.

D’Addezio attended North Carolina State University on a Park Scholarship, the university’s four-year merit scholarship program founded on scholarship, leadership, service and character. She graduated in May with a human biology degree and a minor in English.

She said one of her short-term goals is to serve in a local clinic for underserved populations in preparation for a primary care career in North Carolina. “The Brody Scholars program generously provides support that allows me to boldly pursue primary care without the burden or limitations of debt,” she said. “It also gives me an amazing opportunity to help meet the health care needs of the people of North Carolina by enhancing my medical education and training with networking and support.”

Kassim also graduated recently from N.C. State with degrees in human biology and chemistry. A native of Nigeria, he said he hasn’t decided on a specialty yet, but has enjoyed previous exposure to both family medicine and oncology.

Over the next four years, Kassim hopes to “gain the skills needed to become a competent and compassionate physician while cultivating healthy relationships that will last a lifetime. My selection as a Brody Scholar highlights the support of the family members, friends, mentors and educators who have invested in me and helped me develop into the person I am today,” he added. “I am eternally grateful to the Brody Scholars program for their belief in me and willingness to transform my dream of becoming a physician into reality.”

Sutton graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2013 with a degree in biochemistry. He said he doesn’t have a specific medical specialty in mind but is interested in exploring family medicine.

“I want to learn not only the knowledge associated with becoming a doctor, but also the social skills needed to effectively interact with patients and other medical staff,” Sutton said. “As a kid growing up in and around Kinston, I have long known about the Brody family [of Kinston and Greenville]…and their great contributions toward improving health care in eastern North Carolina. Becoming a part of their family as a Brody Scholar is truly an honor, and I will do everything I can to promote the Brody name in a positive manner.

James Peden Jr., associate dean for admissions at the medical school, said, “For over 30 years the Brody Medical Scholarship Program has attracted outstanding students to the Brody School of Medicine, providing them with opportunities and development activities in addition to very generous financial support. Our Brody Scholars have in turn enriched the Brody School of Medicine with their academic, leadership and altruistic contributions. Most importantly, Brody Scholars have gone on to fulfill the BSOM mission by practicing as outstanding physicians caring for the people of North Carolina.”

In its 32nd year, the Brody Scholars program honors J.S. “Sammy” Brody. He and his brother, Leo, were among the earliest supporters of medical education in eastern North Carolina. The legacy continues through the dedicated efforts of Hyman Brody of Greenville and David Brody of Kinston. Subsequent gifts from the Brody family have enabled the medical school to educate new physicians, conduct important research and improve health care in eastern North Carolina.

Since the program began in 1983, 128 students have received scholarships. About 70 percent of Brody Scholars remain in North Carolina to practice, and the majority of those stay in eastern North Carolina.

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Jul 232014
 

Carroll portrait BSOMDr. Robert G. Carroll, a professor of physiology in the Brody School of Medicine, was selected as the 2014 Claude Bernard Distinguished Lecturer by a national society this spring.

It is one of only 12 distinguished lectureships sponsored by the American Physiology Society and approved by the APS Council. The APS Teaching of Physiology section chose Carroll, who presented “The Social Contract of Learning” at the APS Experimental Biology Meeting in San Diego on April 27. 

Bernard (1818-1878) was a famous French scientist and the founder of modern experimental physiology.

 Carroll earned his Ph.D. in 1981 under the direction of Dr. David F. Opdyke at the Department of Physiology of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-Newark. This was followed by a three-year post-doctoral fellowship at University of Mississippi Medical Center under the sponsorship of Drs. Thomas E. Lohmeier and Arthur C. Guyton. 

Among his many service roles, Carroll is a past chair the education committee for the American Physiological Society and is chair of the education committee of the International Union of Physiological Sciences. He served as chief editor of the Advances in Physiology Education journal for six years. In the past, he served on the United States Medical Licensing Exam Step I physiology test material development committee of the National Board of Medical Examiners.

Carroll has worked at ECU’s Brody School of Medicine since 1984 where he also serves as interim associate dean of medical education.

Jun 272014
 

North Carolina’s Commission for Public Health recently approved a mandate for incoming seventh graders to be vaccinated against meningitis – an infection of the brain or spinal cord – and other meningococcal diseases beginning July 2015. The mandate also includes an additional booster for incoming high school seniors beginning July 2020.

Barring lack of approval by the state’s Rules Review Commission later this month, the new policies will align North Carolina’s policy with recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the national Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.

Meningococcal disease is caused by a certain type of bacteria that infects the brain, spinal cord, bloodstream or lungs. Although it’s considered rare – affecting about 3,000 people nationwide every year – it is potentially fatal and extremely expensive to treat.

According to information published by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, 10 to 15 percent of those who contract a meningococcal disease die from it. Twenty percent of survivors suffer debilitating long-term effects, including brain damage.

Meningococcal diseases that would be prevented by the vaccine tend to be more prevalent in the adolescent population, but only about half of North Carolina’s teens are vaccinated against them.

The following physicians in East Carolina University’s Department of Pediatrics are experts on adolescent health issues and the importance of immunizations for this population: Dr. Roytesa Savage, director of ECU’s Pediatric Outpatient Center and associate professor of pediatrics; Dr. David Holder, clinical associate professor for pediatrics; and Dr. Sharon Mangan, clinical associate professor of pediatrics.

In addition, the following ECU physicians serve on the North Carolina Immunization Advisory Committee: Dr. Karin Hillenbrand, associate professor for pediatrics and director of ECU’s pediatric residency program; and Dr. Kristina Simeonsson, associate professor for pediatrics and public health.

Jun 102014
 

Sharon Justice, PhD“They just don’t get it!” Have you ever caught yourself thinking this? School and workplaces today are, quite a mix, not only of cultures and experiences, but of generations.  And if it isn’t already complicated enough, the Digital Natives are entering high school this year, and for the first time will enter the workplace, filling volunteer, seasonal and part-time roles.  

Brody School of Medicine faculty participating in the INSPRE program (INclusion, Support, Professional development, Retention, Enrichment) recently attended a leadership development session led by East Carolina’s Sharon Justice, teaching instructor in the College of Business.  

The INSPRE program is cosponsored by the Vice Chairs of Certificate in Medical Education Program and a mentoring committee for each participant.  INSPRE workshop sessions are held every other year to address peer mentoring and leadership development in an effort to ensure recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty members that are reflective of the patients and medical learners they serve.

Participants learned that each generation is defined by common experiences, shared values and historical events. Each assumes that the next generation:

  • Wants what they have
  • Shares their definition of “success”
  • Believes the subsequent generations should “pay their dues” the same waygenerations
  • Has it much easier

When we stop to evaluate, we realize these assumptions can lead to misunderstandings and potential conflicts.  What can we do to communicate and work together better?

The most effective way to work in a multi-generational work place starts with observation; take time to understand generational differences.  What is common to the 20 year old (technology, apps, widgets) can be a foreign language to a WWII.  Different doesn’t mean wrong or bad, it’s just different.  Be open to different perspectives.

 Understanding Generations

 

WWII

Boomer

Gen X

Millennial

Assets

Experience, Knowledge, Focus, Dedication

Service, Dedication, Team, Knowledge

Adaptability, Tech knowledge, Independence, creativity, willingness to buck the system

Collaboration, Optimism, Multi-task, Tech Savvy

Liabilities

Reluctance to Buck the system, Dislike conflict, Reticent when disagree

Dislike conflict, reluctant to go against peers, Process before result, Not always budget minded

Skeptical, Distrust authority/institutions

Need supervision and structure, Inexperience, especially with people

Communication

Memos, letters

Phone, in person

Voice mail, Email

Instant Msg, Blog, Text, Email

Rewards

Tangible symbols of loyalty (certificates, etc.)

Promotion, personal recognition

Free time, New resources, results, certifications

Awards, Certificates, Tangible evidence of credibility

 

May 062014
 

At 8 a.m. on Monday, May 19, 30 students who were selected from 109 applicants will arrive and check in for the 2014 Summer Program for Future Doctors. The participants include 27 aspiring applicants to medical school and three matriculating students who will start their first year at the Brody School of Medicine in August.

SPFD blog post picSince its beginning in 1978, the summer program has been driven by the same mission as the medical school. It’s focused on improving the preparation of medical school applicants with an emphasis on North Carolina natives from groups that are underrepresented in medicine. While all North Carolina residents are encouraged to apply, special consideration is given to minority students, students from disadvantaged backgrounds and non-traditional students who are changing paths and retooling for medical school.

This year’s group is diverse by many scales:

  • Gender:  12 men, 18 women
  • Self-identification: 13 Black/African American, 9 White/Caucasian, 2 Hispanic, 1 Native American, 4 Asian American, 1 Other
  • N.C. County Economic Tier:  1-Tier 1, 6-Tier 2, 23-Tier 3
  • Age: ranges from 20 to 37, mean = 23.9
  • Education: 22 have completed undergraduate degrees, two have graduate degrees, seven are rising college seniors, and two are rising college juniors

In its current format, the Summer Program for Future Doctors is an intense, nine week academic program that allows participants to experience the rigors of the medical school curriculum. Participants take courses in anatomy, biochemistry, physiology and neuroanatomy. These courses are taught by the same faculty members who teach the first year of medical school and give the students an opportunity to show that they can perform, and sometimes even thrive, in this learning environment.

The program provides more than an academic challenge. The students interact with rising second-year medical students who serve as teaching assistants. They have shadowing opportunities provided with Brody physicians, experience patient interviews through the Office of Clinical Skills and participate in a simulation experience.  The program provides the future doctors with feedback on a mock medical school admissions interview and helps them prepare their personal statement required in the admissions process. Time is also allocated for MCAT preparation. Perhaps the program should be renamed “medical school boot camp”!SPFD blog post pic2

After the program ends, each participant is provided with a comprehensive evaluation that includes more than test scores. Each student is evaluated for his/her professionalism, work ethic, ability to work with others, and other non-cognitive values that contribute to the student’s ability to become an effective and compassionate physician. Most medical schools accept this evaluation at the level of an evaluation by a university premedical committee.  Highly-rated participants do matriculate to medical school. Fourteen participants from the 2013 program applied for admission this year. Eight have been admitted to BSOM, one will attend medical school at UNC and one will attend medical school out of state.

Please welcome the 2014 participants! The second floor of Brody will be full of hard-working students who hope to become Brody students and future graduates. A smile or a kind word will help them accomplish their goals.

Richard Ray, Ph.D., Director
Summer Program for Future Doctors