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2007 President’s Cabinet Awards

2013 Award Winners

The President's Cabinet recognized the 2007 award winners at a dinner on Nov. 3, 2007 at Levin Hall. Pictured, from left, front row, are Leslie Hargrove, Dr. Gayle Olson-Koutrouvelis, Dr. Judith L. Rowen, Dr. Carolyn Utsey, Cheryl L. Kaplan and Kyler Elwell. Standing, from left to right, Dr. Kirk L. Smith, President's Cabinet awards chairman, Mary Wainwright, Dr. John (Fred) Thomas, Dr. Mary Claire Haver, Dr. Hans M. von Marensdorff, UTMB President Dr. David L. Callender, Janis Matthews, Eric Gully, Dr. David Wise, Ryan Collins, Marie Schwartz, James Chaney, Jessica Allen, and Vincent (V.J.) Tramonte, President's Cabinet chairman.

Creating Connections with KidsCarolyn Utsey, P.T., Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Janis Matthews, Child Life Specialist
Dan Marullo, Ph.D., Child Psychologist
Department of Physical Therapy

This collaborative project involved health-sciences students, community volunteers and a community-based environment with children who have special needs. As the number of health care students who volunteered as camp counselors for the Rainbow Connection Camp greatly increased, there was a need to develop training modules to help them understand key issues as they cared for the special-needs children during the week-long summer camp. UTMB health care providers who facilitated the Rainbow Connection Camp, traveled to Chicago, Illinois and attended training at the Children’s Oncology Camps Association. From this training, orientation modules pertaining to the emotional, spiritual, medical, and physical aspects of campers were developed. Additionally, this project provided for the implementation of a pre-camp weekend to introduce counselor volunteers to the specialized summer camp environment, which serves children and adolescents who have been treated for cancer and blood disorders at UTMB’s Children’s Hospital.

Practice of Medicine Year 3 Expanded Pilot ProjectJudith L. Rowen, M.D., Associate Professor
Hans M. von Marensdorff, M.D.
Department of Pediatrics

The Practice of Medicine Year 3 (POM3) course has been in existence since the 2006-07 academic year. This project expanded the course and provided third-year medical students with a “safe” place to reflect and grow as professionals. The course provided a venue for presenting “orphan topics”- such as understanding how patients pay for health care, how a patient’s culture influences medical decision-making, how to address the issues of patient safety, and much more. Faculty served as facilitators/mentors and assign advanced readings and reflective essays for each session. The project included two Austin-based groups and seven Galveston-based groups who met monthly in a longitudinal small group format. 

SCHIP and Children’s Medicaid Enrollment ProjectJessica Allen, Student
Kyler Elwell, Student
School of Medicine

With a majority of Galveston’s public school children qualifying for the State Children Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) or Children’s Medicaid, there has always been a substantial demand for children’s healthcare coverage in our area. However, low enrollment in these programs results from many factors: inaccessible bureaucracies, intricate forms, detailed documentation, extended time lapses between application and enrollment, and rapid expiration of coverage. Recognizing the importance of this growing problem, UTMB medical students Jessica Allen and Kyler Elwell, created this project to organize county-wide outreach efforts utilizing UTMB students, faculty and staff who worked with families and helped them complete complicated applications and educate them on the enrollment process and policy maintenance. This two-year project coordinated three county-wide outreach visits per year, created a working-relationship with the Galveston Independent School District to train district employees and disseminate information to families, and established a website to facilitate access to information on state and federal health insurance and related resources.

School-based Depression Education, Screening and Treatment ProgramJohn F. (Fred) Thomas, Ph.D., Program Director; Analyst/Consultant
Community Health Services

The overlying goal of this project was to improve adolescent mental health in the Galveston community through psycho-education, screening and provision of culturally sensitive, evidence-based services. Three prevention strategies were incorporated into a single program and was implemented on a racially mixed and economically diverse sample of Ball High school students. Students were taught how to recognize signs of depression in themselves and others.  Additionally, students were screened to assess depressive symptoms; those with clinically significant scores were encouraged to utilize the services available through the Teen Health Centers located at Ball High School and Central Middle School. Participants were also directed to a project-based website that was monitored by an experienced clinician who reviewed all responses and wrote a detailed, personalized assessment. Assessments were emailed to the student and were offered the option of talking anonymously with a licensed clinician regarding “feelings-related” issues. Questionnaire responses that suggested significant problems were addressed by urging students to seek immediate assistance at one of the two Teen Health Clinics.

Improving Patient Outcomes in Obstetric Emergencies Utilizing Frequent Unannounced Simulation Drills Supplemented with Interactive Web-based EducationGayle Olson, M.D., Associate Professor
Mary Claire Haver, M.D.
Barbara Ferrell, Ph.D.
Patricia Morgan, R.N.
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

A unique simulation suite was created to  allow hands-on training and provide simulation scenarios for difficult obstetric emergencies—without risk to patients—for all medical students, residents and nurses in obstetrics and gynecology. This suite has been equipped with high-fidelity simulation mannequins and is complemented by an interactive web-based program called “Design A Case.” This web-based program is a unique series of interactive study cases which is linked to each simulation emergency. Periodic, unplanned obstetric drills are done to focus on the following areas: maneuvers for vaginal breech delivery, managing and controlling postpartum hemorrhaging, eclamptic seizures, shoulder dystocia and CPR during pregnancy. Residents have an opportunity to participate in these drills approximately six times per year.

AHEC Community Health Worker (CHW) Training ProgramMary Wainwright, Deputy Director East Texas Area Health Education Center (AHEC)
Leslie Hargrove
Division of Community Outreach

The Area Health Education Center (AHEC) headquartered at UTMB trained community members to educate and support people in their own neighborhoods about healthier lifestyles in a culturally and linguistically competent manner. This cadre of community health workers (CHWs) helped clients throughout Galveston County navigate the health care system. President’s Cabinet funds supported the training component and purchased outreach kits for community-based interventions and education programs. Kits contained a stethoscope, blood pressure monitor, glucose monitor, general supplies and educational aids. Overall this well-trained CHW workforce was called upon to assist organizations in Galveston County to expand delivery of health care and follow-up with patients. 

A Heart for ServiceDavid Wise, P.T., Ph.D., Associate Professor
Eric Gully, P.T. Student
Ryan Collins, P.T. Student
James Chaney, P.T. Student
Carolyn Utsey, P.T., Ph.D.
Department of Physical Therapy

To help address the health needs of a significant population of people who do not have access to medical services, this project established free physical therapy services through the volunteer efforts of UTMB students and clinicians. President’s Cabinet funding allowed for the establishment of a student-run physical therapy program under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist at the St. Vincent’s clinic. Free, competent physical therapy services were provided to the underserved population of Galveston while also providing students the ability to gain hands-on experience with vary diagnoses, equipment, and treatment techniques. Funds were used to purchase physical therapy equipment for this project.

Breaking the SilenceCheryl L. Kaplan, Director of Theater Outreach and Education
Marie Schwartz, Galveston Resource and Crisis Center
Institute for Medical Humanities

In an attempt to give domestic violence a voice, Cheryl Kaplan created “Breaking the Silence” as a traveling production with art, music, theater and intellectual discussion to engage audiences in the truth and consequences of domestic violence. A total of 10, 90-minute performances were held throughout Galveston County to dispel myths, provide factual information and empower people to learn how to get out of a dangerous situation. The purpose of he traveling production was to reduce the incidence of domestic violence at the local level by educating audience members about free resources and providing information on the legal and social necessities to return back to an independent life. The production culminated with the donation of a “comment wall” to the Galveston Resource and Crisis Center for their educational use and to perpetuate the important messages shared by audience members during these 10 productions.

 For more information about the President's Cabinet or how to join, contact Marie Marczak at (409) 747-4876


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