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This Week@WesternU April 15-19, 2013

by Rodney Tanaka

April 15, 2013

Read 8 mins

Commencement 2013

The 32nd Annual Commencement Exercises for Western University of Health Sciences will be held May 15-17, 2013 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena, Calif. Here are some important reminders to graduates regarding commencement. Please forward to friends and family as appropriate.

Graduate Reminders

Commencement website: The commencement website at has all kinds of useful information, including parking maps, directions, and instructions. Please pull all necessary information from the site before heading to the Pasadena Civic Auditorium.

Live webcast: We are pleased to announce that the commencement ceremonies will be webcast live at Please let those who are not attending know, so they can watch you online.

Guest Reminders

Doors Close Early: The front doors will close at 9:20 for morning ceremonies and 2:50 for afternoon ceremonies, and will re-open after the processional, invocation and national anthem. It’s essential that all of your guests be seated in the auditorium prior to the doors closing. If your friends/relatives tend to be late … you might tell them it starts 30 minutes earlier.

General Admission Tickets: Tickets are required for all ceremonies except College of Pharmacy and College of Veterinary Medicine.

Inaugural Ceremony for:

College of Dental Medicine

College of Optometry

College of Podiatric Medicine

Wednesday, May 15, 9:30 a.m.

Keynote Speaker: Edward James Olmos

Actor, producer and humanitarian

College of Pharmacy

Wednesday, May 15, 3:00 p.m.

Keynote Speaker: Jenelle L. Sobotka, PharmD, FAPhA

Professor, Endowed Chair of Pharmacy Practice, Ohio Northern University Raabe College of Pharmacy

College of Allied Health Professions

College of Graduate Nursing

Thursday, May 16, 9:30 a.m.

Keynote Speaker: Jason Hwang, MD, MBA

Physician and author

College of Veterinary Medicine

Thursday, May 16, 3:00 p.m.

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald

Veterinarian, actor and comedian

College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

Graduate College of Biomedical Sciences

Friday, May 17, 9:30 a.m.

Keynote Speaker: Jason Hwang, MD, MBA

Physician and author

WesternU hosts autism conference

More than 200 health professionals, educators, autism awareness advocates and parents turned out for the 11th annual Trends in Autism Conference on Saturday, April 6, 2013, at Western University of Health Sciences. The conference was sponsored and coordinated by Casa Colina Centers for Rehabilitation, with WesternU serving as a Community Partner.

Click here to read the full story and view the slideshow.

Video from three events on Saturday, April 6

Western University of Health Sciences campus in Pomona was a beehive of activity on Saturday, April 6, as three major events drew thousands of people to campus for very different reasons. Click here to view the video on our Facebook page.

State Sen. Ed Hernadez, OD, on the Affordable Care Act

State Sen. Ed Hernandez, OD, presented “The Changing Face of Health Care in California” Friday, April 12, 2013 at WesternU. The presentation included a brief history of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), state legislation, special session news, options, obstacles, and an explanation of Covered California. Click here to read the full story and view the slideshow.

From the College of Allied Health Professions:

Department of Health Sciences & Barfield Elementary School host Community Day

WesternU students and faculty will spend the day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 20, 2013 at Pomona’s Barfield Elementary School, 2181 N. San Antonio Ave., learning, playing and growing together with students and their parents, focusing on health and wellness.

"This is the kickoff event to a relationship that we have fostered for the past two years, to join with the Barfield community in the pursuit of healthy living," said Tina Meyer, DrHS, PA-C, Chair, Department of Health Sciences, College of Allied Health Professions at Western University of Health Science. Click here to read the full story.

Department of Physical Therapy Education news

Satisfy your sweet tooth and take a chance at a 50/50 raffle to support the Physical Therapy Advocacy Club (PTAC) in raising funds for the Marquette Challenge. The PTAC Bake Sale takes place this week, from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, April 17, in the HPC Esplanade. All baked good are only $1 each, and raffle tickets are also being sold for only $1. Fifty percent of the raffle proceeds go to one winner, and the other 50 percent goes to the Marquette Challenge. Each year for the past 24 years, students at PT and PTA schools nationwide have made an impact on physical therapy education and research by supporting the Foundation for Physical Therapy through the Marquette Challenge. To date, students have raised more than $2.3 million to support the Foundation’s doctoral and research grants. Last year, 68 schools across the country, including WesternU, participated in the Challenge. For additional information, please contact Katrina DeWeese, PTAC President, at

From the Department of Physician Assistant Education:

Kudos and Accomplishments

Congratulations to Matthew Kiddle, PA-S ’14, on receiving a scholarship at the seventh annual East West Scholarship Dinner. He was selected based on academic achievement, service to the community, and potential for future success. Matthew wrote an excellent essay highlighting all of those aspects. Congratulations to Matthew and all the other students who received East West scholarships.

From the College of Optometry:


The National Optometric Student Association will have a unique Zumbathon fundraiser from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 17, in the Banfield Veterinary Clinical Center Student Commons. This inaugural fundraiser will benefit the Eyes of Optometry program, which encourages under-represented minorities to become interested in and enthusiastic about Optometry. The charge is $5 per person, and water will be provided. For more information, please email Sign-up form is here.

Kudos and accomplishments

The American Academy of Optometry recently released its 2012 annual report, which highlights the College of Optometry’s participation and recognition at the American Academy of Optometry annual meeting in Phoenix, Ariz. in October 2012

College of Optometry highlights:

• Dr. Nataly Fahim obtained her Fellowship at the meeting in Phoenix – Page 6 under “California.”

• Dr. Tiffenie Harris is on the Admittance Committee (Region 4) – Page 7.

• Students who obtained their Student Fellowship. The College had 55, the highest number of students who obtained a Student Fellowship – Page 11.

• Dr. Elizabeth Hoppe is a Section Officer for the Optometric Education Section (Special Interest group) – Page 24.

• Drs. Efrain Castellanos, Kierstyn Napier-Dovorany and Jasmine Yumori received Vistakon Innovation in Education Grants. – Page 26.

Click here to view the annual report.

Peter Ash Talk

From noon to 1 p.m. Thursday, April 18, in HEC Classroom E, the College of Optometry and Global Health Club will present Peter Ash, founder of Under the Same Sun. Peter is passionately committed to ending the deadly discrimination against persons with albinism in Tanzania. He will speak about the atrocities in Tanzania, and how he has combated discrimination through education, advocacy, and health care. Contact for more information.

College News

Click here to view the latest College of Optometry news.

From the College of Veterinary Medicine:

Kudos and Accomplishments

Second-year CVM student Natalie Punt has been selected for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Summer Internship Program in Biomedical Research for Veterinary Students, and was one of 20 students selected for a fellowship at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Summer Medical Fellows Program (HHMI). Natalie has been conducting research with Dr. Kristopher Irizarry for the past two years and has come to represent the best attributes of the College of Veterinary Medicine.

From the College of Graduate Nursing:

Kudos and accomplishments

MSN/FNP student Michelle Moricca’s research article, “School Asthma Screening and Case Management: Attendance and Learning Outcomes,” has been published in The Journal of School Nursing. Michelle will present her research at the National Association of School Nurses Conference in June 2013 in Florida.

From the College of Pharmacy:

Ray Symposium to address obesity

The nation’s worsening obesity epidemic will be the topic of Western University of Health Sciences’ annual Ray Symposium, to be held at 5 p.m. Thursday, April 18, in the Health Education Center, Lecture Hall 1. Keynote speaker Dr. Patricia Crawford, RD, director of the Dr. Robert C. and Veronica Atkins Center for Weight and Health at UC Berkeley, and a Cooperative Extension Nutrition Specialist, will present “Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention.” Click here to read the full story. Click here to reserve your seat.

Scholarship Golf Classic

The College of Pharmacy will hold its inaugural Scholarship Golf Classic on May 23 at Morongo Golf Club at Tukwet Canyon. Registration begins at 9 a.m., and time of play will be 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Shotgun-play format will include contests for low score, longest drive, closest to the pin, and hole-in-one. Click here to read the full story.

From the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

AOA president to visit:

On Wednesday, April 17, American Osteopathic Association (AOA) President Dr. Ray Stowers will speak to first- and -second year COMP students at a lunch lecture sponsored by the Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of California (OPSC). He also will attend and co-present the President’s Society Award with Dr. Pumerantz and the OPSC award with Dr. Connett at the COMP Honors Day ceremony.

Kudos and accomplishments

Raymond J. Hruby, DO, MS, FAAO, was awarded The Andrew Taylor Still Medallion of Honor during the President’s Dinner at the American Academy of Osteopathy (AAO) Annual Convocation on March 23, 2013 in Orlando, Fla. According to the AAO, deserving members of the Academy are awarded The Andrew Taylor Still Medallion of Honor by exhibiting, among other accomplishments in scientific or professional affairs, an exceptional understanding and application of osteopathic principles and concepts.

COMP Faculty Candidate Seminar Series

COMP will hold its faculty candidate research seminar for 2013 from 2 to 3 p.m. on Tuesday, April 16, in Classroom A, HEC. The seminar will be streamed to Lecture Hall 1, COMP-Northwest. E. Magda Barbu, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, David Koch Center for Applied Research MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, will be presenting “Capturing Novel Host-Microbe Interactions by High-throughput Phage Display.” The COMP Candidate Seminar Series, which is open to everyone on campus, will be running from March through May.

From the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest

Kudos and Accomplishments

Brion Benninger, MD, MSc, had his paper, “Formally Acknowledging Donor Cadavers in the Basic and Clinical Science Research Arena,” accepted into the Journal of Clinical Anatomy. Six student-doctors mentored by Dr. Benninger in the McDaniel’s Anatomy Research Lab (Andrea Pippin, Andrea Matson, Jonathan Shader, Andy Berglund, Sarah Hughes, Tyler Early) had their work accepted to present at a national meeting. All of the students’ abstracts were blind peer-reviewed. Dr. Benninger is proud of the students for putting in the extra work to complete their research projects outside of their regular studies. Dr. Benninger is the Professor/Vice Chair, Medical Anatomical Sciences, on the Lebanon campus.

From the College of Podiatric Medicine:

Kudos and accomplishments

The Inland Valley News and its not-for-profit organization, Shining Glory Publications, will honor College of Podiatric Medicine Founding Dean Lawrence Harkless, DPM, with an Excellence Award during its 16th Annual Celebration of Excellence Awards Gala on April 20, 2013.

From the Pumerantz Library:

“Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War”

The perspectives of surgeons, physicians, and nurses are richly documented in the history of Civil War medicine, which highlights the heroism and brutality of battlefield operations and the challenges of caring for the wounded during wartime. Yet the experiences of injured soldiers during the conflict and in the years afterward are less well known. “Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War” focuses on disabled veterans and their role as symbols of the fractured nation.

The Harriet K. & Philip Pumerantz Library will host the “Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War” traveling exhibition, created by the National Library of Medicine, from April 15 to May 18, 2013. We would like to extend a special thank you to John Hiroto for loaning us his items from his collection. We are also extremely grateful to Bert J. (Hans) Davidson, MD, PhD, executive director of the Southern California Medical Museum, for loaning his collection of medical instruments and tools from the Civil War era. Please join the library for the opening reception from 2 to 4 p.m. on April 15. Dr. Davidson will be giving tours to those attending the reception.

Light refreshments will be served. Contact the library at 909-469-5323 for more information. Click here to view the announcement.

Assessment in Action Study

The Harriet K. and Philip Pumerantz Library’s Reference and Outreach Education Services section has been selected to participate in the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) Assessment in Action program. Read the blog article for more information about this research.

National Library Week 2013

To celebrate National Library Week the library is offering four workshops. The topics are EndNote Cite While You Write, effective studying techniques by Dagmar Cofer of the WesternU LEAD office, mobile apps, and using images in presentations. To view details and register please read the blog article.

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