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This Week@WesternU, April 17-21, 2017

by Rodney Tanaka

April 17, 2017

Read 7 mins

WesternU’s East West Scholarship Dinner celebrates student achievement
The 2017 East West Scholarship Dinner honored Western University of Health Sciences students for their academic excellence and community service and also recognized a longtime WesternU supporter.

The dinner, held April 8, 2017 at the Hilton San Gabriel, featured 38 awards totaling more than $50,000 distributed to WesternU students from all backgrounds and programs. Since its establishment in 1991, the event has raised more than $380,000 for the East West Scholarship Endowment Fund and has distributed scholarships to more than 500 students. Generous donors also have endowed their individual family scholarship funds so their legacy of supporting WesternU students will continue in perpetuity.

T.G. Chow, MD, received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his unending support of WesternU.

Click here to read the full story.


Recital Hall dedication
WesternU will formally dedicate the Recital Hall in the Health Education Center in honor of former Provost Benjamin L. Cohen, DO, at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 18. The dedication ceremony will be in the hall, which is on the second floor of the HEC outside Lecture Halls I and II.

The dedication will immediately be followed by the latest “Evening of Music,” featuring student and staff performers. The musical program is sponsored by University Student Affairs and the WesternU Public Affairs Department. The dedication and musical presentation are scheduled to run until about 7:30 p.m.

Click here to view a flier.


Photo competition
On behalf of University Student Affairs and Public Affairs, thank you to our WesternU family for submitting your wonderful pictures. Finalists in each category have been selected and are available on the University’s Facebook page! Cast your vote by “liking” your favorite photos. One winner from each of the three categories will be determined by the most “likes” on Facebook. Winners will be announced at the end of the month!

The theme is “WesternU Way,” so keep that in mind when voting for your favorite!
Facebook voting ends at 9 a.m. Monday, April 24, 2017.

View the finalists on Facebook by clicking the categories:

Happy voting and again, thank you for everyone’s submissions!


From the College of Pharmacy:

Ray Symposium
The College of Pharmacy will hold the 2017 Ray Symposium at 4 p.m. Thursday, April 20, 2017 in HEC Lecture Hall I. Keynote speaker Dana Goldman, PhD, Leonard D. Schaeffer Chair and Distinguished Professor of Pharmacy, Public Policy and Economics at the University of Southern California, will talk about “Re-Thinking Value in an Era of Health Reform.”
Click here for more information and to register.


Kudos on accomplishments
Congratulations to MSPS alum Megan Molina, who is the 2017 Courtney Page Zillman Fellow at the University of Arizona Steele Children’s Research Center. Megan conducted research in Dr. Steve O’Barr’s lab and graduated from the MSPS program last year. She is currently pursuing her PhD degree in immunobiology at the University of Arizona. Click here to read more:


From the College of Podiatric Medicine:

Kudos on accomplishments
On April 6, CPM Dean Lawrence Harkless, DPM, addressed the 30th Annual Symposium on Advanced Wound Care/Wound Healing Society (SAWC/Spring 2017) in San Diego. He spoke on the “Social History Risk Prioritization Role of Prevention.”

On April 8, Dr. Harkless gave two presentations at the UC San Francisco Vascular Symposium: “Podiatry and Vascular: A Historical Perspective” and “Toe Flow and Metabolic Know.”


From the College of Dental Medicine:

Honors Day
On Thursday, April 13, 2017, the College of Dental Medicine held its 2017 Honors Day and Senior Awards Ceremony. Dean Steven Friedrichsen provided his annual State of the College Address and the College presented a record 52 awards to students, faculty and staff totaling $40,900. The ceremony was well attended by University administration, CDM faculty, staff and students. Of note, an especially emotional moment was felt by all as Dr. Marisa Watanabe presented a posthumous award to Jihoon “Ryan” Choo, DHA (Hon.) – a former DMD 2017 student for the American Association of Public Health Dentistry Dental Student in Community Dentistry and Dental Public Health. This award recognizes a senior student who has demonstrated a special interest or achievement in community service and dental public health, something that was particularly evident in Dr. Choo.


From the College of Veterinary Medicine:

Kudos on accomplishments
CVM Professor Malika Kachani and Associate Professor David Kersey are the newest Fellows of the West Region Consortium of CVMs Teaching Academy. Western University of Health Sciences has played a significant role in establishing and developing the RTA. Drs. Kachani’s and Kersey’s applications, outlining their accomplishments in veterinary education, were reviewed by the RTA Membership Committee and approved by the RTA Steering Committee. RTA’s mission is to ensure that Academy fellows collaborate to develop, implement, and sustain the best practices in veterinary medical and biomedical education in our colleges and to establish veterinary medical educator/biomedical educator as a valued career track.


From the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific:

Kudos on accomplishments
COMP Assistant Professor Thierra Nalley, PhD, and a colleague published a paper investigating the relationship between bony cervical form and neck posture in primates.

Thierra K. Nalley, Neysa Grider-Potter (2017) Functional analyses of the primate upper cervical vertebral column. Journal of Human Evolution. Volume 107, Pages 19-35, ISSN 0047-2484​.


Clinical research study
Do you or someone you know have Type 2 Diabetes?

Do you currently take insulin once or twice per day?

If so, consider participating in an important Clinical Research Study comparing two different types of basal (long-acting) insulin.

We are looking for participants who:

Are least 18 years old and have type 2 Diabetes Mellitus

Are willing to return to clinic for regular site visits and have phone contact between appointments

Are using one type of insulin with or without oral medications

Qualified participants will receive the study drug (insulin) and study related medical visits and procedures at no cost while participating in the study.  In addition you may receive compensation for your time.

Visits will occur at Western University of Health Sciences, Patient Care Center, 795 E. Second St. Suite 5, Pomona, CA.

To learn about how you can participate and see if you would qualify please contact:

Research Coordinator – Albert Medina 909-469-8626 or Dr. Sathananthan 909-706-3818 or email us at


From the Graduate College of Biomedical Sciences:

Kudos on accomplishments
GCBS Associate Professor Fanglong Dong, PhD, in collaboration with Dr. Haan (level I trauma, Via Christi Hospital) and residents, had a paper accepted in the Journal of Agromedicine titled “Outcomes Following Traumatic Grain Elevator Injuries.”

Dr. Dong, in collaboration with Drs. Comunale and Safdari (ARMC, Anesthesiology) and residents, had an oral presentation accepted at Western Anesthesia Residents’ Conference. Their study is “Evaluating the Hemodynamic Effects of Acute Methamphetamine Use during General Anesthesia, a Retrospective Cohort Study.” Their major conclusion was almost half (62 or 44.6%) of methamphetamine acutely positive patients were found to meet the hemodynamic instability criteria compared to 9 (6%) of control patients and 21 (28.4%) for methamphetamine subacutely positive(p<0.001).


From the Office of Environmental Health and Safety:

Help Dave raise funds for the Dallas – Baton Rouge Memorial Ride.
Dave Sevesind, assistant director of Environmental Health and Safety at WesternU and a Pomona Police and SWAT officer for more than 34 years, will be participating in a memorial bike ride for fallen police officers. He is joining a group of officers from California and Texas to bring awareness to violence against law enforcement officers.

Sevesind is trying to raise $1,000 in sponsorships for the ride. He and Pomona Police officers are working in partnership with the Los Angeles Police Protective League and The Eagle & Badge foundation to make donations tax-deductible. 

Click here to read more and learn how you can help Dave raise funds for the Dallas – Baton Rouge Memorial Ride.


From University Advancement:

CVM awards and scholarships
The College of Veterinary Medicine is proud to provide more than $67,000 in student scholarships and awards due to the generous support of our many friends and donors at the annual Honors Day event today, April 17 and the Senior Award Ceremony on May 16.


Alumna on Campus
Melanie Pollack, DO ’16, an intern at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, returned to campus on April 12 for a lunchtime lecture on “Dermatology in the Emergency Department,” which was hosted by the Emergency Medicine Interest Group. Following her presentation on the different dermatological cases she has encountered in the ER, Dr. Pollack took time to answer the students’ questions about her overall experiences both on rotations and as an intern. Alumni Director Russel Heskin attended the talk and presented Dr. Pollack with a thank you gift on behalf of the Alumni Association.


Sudden Snack
The Alumni Office hosted their final Sudden Snack of the year on the afternoon of Wednesday, April 12 on the Esplanade near Ethan Allen Park, distributing more than 600 cookies-and-cream ice cream sandwiches to current students in a little more than 20 minutes. Now in its fifth year, Sudden Snack is held a few times each year to increase awareness of the Alumni Association among current students, as well as to acknowledge the students’ hard work. The events are typically timed to coincide with the end of the first-year students’ IPE small group meetings, one of the few times that such a large group of students seem to all be on the same schedule. On-campus students received an email from the Alumni Office just about an hour before the event begins (hence the event’s name), inviting them to come out to enjoy a little treat.


Alumni Scholarship
Congratulations to Duy-Hoa Huynh, DO ’18 (Pomona), and Maranda Herner, DO ’18 (Lebanon), who are the recipients of the 2017 WesternU Alumni Association Scholarship. This scholarship is awarded annually to two humanistic, caring, and dependable Western University of Health Sciences students who both excel academically and exemplify the qualities of an engaged alumnus or alumna through their extracurricular involvement. Applicants must be enrolled full-time in a degree or certificate program at WesternU, be in good academic and professional standing with their program, and have maintained a cumulative GPA of 3.0. Both students this year distinguished themselves from an exceptional pool of applicants for both their academic and extracurricular achievements, and each receive $1,000, a certificate, and a gift.


From the Harriet K. and Philip Pumerantz Library:

University Archives
Every year the American Library Association marks Preservation Week to promote awareness of the importance of preserving cultural heritage collections. This year Preservation Week is April 23-29. The University Archives has created an exhibit explaining the process of digitizing the university’s video collection. The exhibit is available for viewing beginning today, April 17. For more information please contact Olivia Solis, University Archivist, at 909-469-5323.


Kudos on accomplishments
Congratulations to Kelli Hines, MLIS, who was recently voted in as President-Elect for the Medical Library Group of Southern California and Arizona (MLGSCA). She will serve a three-year term (President-Elect, President, and Past President).

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