The President's Council awarded more than $214,000 last week to
fund projects in the Health Science Center's five schools. The awards
were announced at the council's annual awards dinner.
President's Council Co-Chairs Luis de la Garza and J. Tullos Wells
presented the grants to faculty and staff from the Dental School, the
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Medical School, the School
of Allied Health Sciences, and the School of Nursing. Projects will
range from the development of innovative teaching strategies, such as
World Wide Web-based teaching sites, to increased funding for medical
student scholarships with emphasis on students from the South
Dr. John P. Howe, III, president, introduced a special guest--the
Medical School's new dean, Dr. Steven A. Wartman. "Dr. Wartman,
who assumed his duties March 27, is the new leader of our outstanding
medical school and will help keep it moving on its upward
trajectory," Dr. Howe said.
Dr. Wartman said he was attracted to the Medical School post
because the school is well positioned to make great advances in
research, in clinical care and in educating the next generation of
outstanding medical professionals. He accepted the stewardship of a
$25,000 President's Council grant toward scholarships for medical
students from the South Texas/Border Region and another $25,000 grant
to strengthen medical ethics education.
The largest single grant, $38,508, went to the School of Nursing to
replace a computerized testing system that is more than 20 years old.
The new system will provide the opportunity for faculty to generate
exams from their office computers and to electronically distribute
exams to students at work-stations in computerized testing rooms.
Students who complete an electronic exam might be able to receive
immediate feedback on their scores or even about individual test
Other President's Council grants will help the Health Science
Center to introduce bioscience careers to young students.
"Decisions about becoming a scientist don't happen in college,
they happen in a student's formative years," Wells said in
describing the award to the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.
"The Graduate School will create a video presentation designed to
inform and excite students about careers as research scientists.
Faculty members of the Graduate School are eager to take this video
into the schools of South Texas."
With its final award, the President's Council commissioned a book
about the Health Science Center's history in honor of the
institution's 30th anniversary in 2002.
The President's Council awards were:
- School of Nursing computerized testing system, $38,508
- Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences science careers video
- School of Allied Health Sciences video and funds for student
- Addition to Marvin Forland, M.D., Medical Ethics Endowment Fund,
- Medical School scholarships, $25,000
- Dental School radiographic teaching models, $25,680
- Innovative teaching grants in all Health Science Center schools,
- History of the Health Science Center project, $25,000
This year's award total is the largest in the eight-year history of
the President's Council. Membership on the council is available to
anybody interested in supporting the Health Science Center's missions.
For more information, call the Office of University Relations at ext.
The third annual Mini-Medical School began last week with the first
session titled "Exploring the Health Sciences: An Evening with a
More than 300 participants attended the first evening, which
included breakout sessions with hands-on activities in the fields of
medicine, dentistry, nursing, research and emergency medical
technology. The event provided interaction with different health
professionals, affording participants the opportunity to gain a fresh
understanding about specific areas of clinical activities, teaching or
Speakers included Victoria Smith, emergency medical technology; Dr.
Brenda Jackson, acute nursing care; Carolyn Kirsch, family nursing
care; Vicky Dittmar, Office of the Nursing School Dean; Dr. Glenn
Gross, surgery and medicine; Dr. Stephanie Roberts, general dentistry;
Dr. Robin Leach, cellular and structural biology; Dr. Karl Klose,
microbiology; Dr. John Gunn, microbiology; and Dr. Robert Castro,
The third Mini-Medical School session is "The Brain: A User's
Guide," scheduled for April 18 and the final session,
"Living with Illness," will be held April 25. Each Tuesday's
program starts at 7 p.m. in lecture hall 3.102B next to the Briscoe
This four-week course is free to the public. Students in high
school, college, adults and seniors are all welcome to attend. To
register, call 7-1925 or access the Health Science Center's
Mini-Medical School Web page at minimedschool00.uthscsa.edu.
The Mini-Medical School is supported in part by an educational
grant from Pfizer.
Miles for Smiles
participants relax after the 5K run. The event was
organized by the Health Science Center Dental School. The
money raised through donations supports dental wellness
programs for school children.
The younger participants show off the
medals they received following the fun run event
The Dental School's eighth annual Miles for Smiles 5K run/2K walk,
which benefits dental prevention programs for schoolchildren in San
Antonio and the surrounding areas, was held Saturday, March 25, at the
Health Science Center.
Chief event coordinator Sara Bender, a third-year dental student,
rated it a great success. About 160 runners and 30 walkers
participated in the race. The concurrent health fair had 20 presenters
and included back massage, physical therapy, and family counseling
Miles for Smiles supports fluoride mouthrinse and preventive
sealant programs serving thousands of grade-school students, and
dental care for underserved areas in San Antonio.
Principal sponsors for the student-run and -organized event were
Crest, H-E-B and Kilgore Dental Equipment.
Pediatric nurse practitioner (PNP) students, under the direction of
Diane Lesh, assistant professor in the Department of Family Nursing
Care and director of the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner program,
visited Laredo earlier this month to provide free physicals for 187
children at Cigarroa Middle School who would not otherwise be able to
afford them. This was the second trip for the group; last year's visit
was so successful that the students were asked to return yearly.
These visits have a dual purpose: to provide as much experience as
possible for the PNP students, and to serve a needy community.
"It has increased the students' awareness of border health issues
and helped us understand the families that come to San Antonio when
students see them in community health care settings here," said
Working with Martha Martinez of Mercy Regional Medical Center in
Laredo, the PNPs perform physical examinations for students who
participate in sports programs at the school. Last year they referred
42 children for vision correction alone. This year the Department of Ophthalmology's
Mobile Eye Screening Unit "Blue Bird" was
scheduled to see children on the same day.
PNPs referred more than 40 school children for evaluation of other
medical conditions. These included cardiac murmurs, cardiac
arrhythmias, musculoskeletal abnormalities, and acanthosis nigricans
for diabetes type II screening.
Two Laredo physicians, Drs. Francisco Cervantes and Fernando
Castaņeda, were available for consultation by the PNPs. These
physicians will see any of the children referred for medical
evaluation who do not have a primary care provider.
In addition, this year the PNPs measured hemoglobin levels to check
for anemia and other conditions.
"Anemia is something that is often overlooked in adolescents,
and it can influence how well they do in school," said Lesh. This
year the screening found eight students with low hemoglobin count.
The PNP students made posters and created a PowerPoint presentation
on topics such as acne, tattooing and body piercing. They also educated students on the importance of
regular breast and testicle self-examinations for early detection of
Nurse practitioners are primary care providers who work in a number
of settings. They have master's degrees in nursing and may specialize
in one of several areas, including pediatrics, women's health, family,
mental health and gerontology.
"As nurse practitioners, we can provide primary health care in
addition to treating minor acute illnesses and monitoring chronic
conditions. The nurse practitioner is an integral part of the health
care team providing quality health care to underserved populations.
They cooperate with physicians to manage the more complicated
cases," Lesh said. "Our purpose is to help as much as we can
so that people achieve the highest possible level of health.
Lesh has been with the Health Science Center since 1997, following
a teaching and clinical career at Creighton University in Omaha.
Before that, she pioneered the clinical nurse specialist role at
Children's Medical Center of Dallas, where she also had been the
supervisor of the 23-bed pediatric intensive care unit.
An All-America athlete, a record-breaking pilot, a formidable first
lady, an award-winning World War II photographer and a teenager
documenting the horrors of the Holocaust are just a few of the women
featured in the 1925-1950 section of the "Women of the 20th
Titled "We Can Do It!", the post-World War I section of
the exhibit reviews the contributions women made during the Great
Depression and World War II in science, literature, civil rights and
The "Women of the 20th Century" display is a collection
of photographs and biographies detailing the lives of the women who
paved the way for future female policy-makers and leaders. Briscoe
Library assistant Pat Brown assembled the collection, which is on
display through July in the lecture hall foyer near the library's
third-floor entrance. The Health Science Center Women's Faculty
Association co-sponsored the exhibit. It is divided into four
quarter-centuries with themes including the civil rights movement and
the right to vote.
In the 1925-1950 section, viewers may learn about "Babe"
Didrikson Zaharias (1914-1956), a Texan All-America athlete who
founded the Ladies' Professional Golf Association in 1947, and about
Mary McLeod Bethune (1875-1955), an educator and activist who served
in the Roosevelt administration as head of the National Youth
Administration Division of Negro Affairs.
Other extraordinary women featured include first lady Eleanor
Roosevelt (1884-1962), who spoke boldly on behalf of the poor and
powerless and later was appointed as a delegate to the United Nations,
and Frances Perkins (1882-1965) who dedicated her life to social
reform for women and children and became the first female appointed to
a cabinet post in 1933 during the Roosevelt administration.
Other women whose accomplishments distinguished them during that
era include Margaret Bourke-White (1904-1971), the award-winning
photojournalist who traveled with General Patton during World War II
and was one of the first to chronicle in photos the horrors of the
Buchenwald concentration camp, and Amelia Earhart (1897-1937), the
first female to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.
Another highlight of the exhibit is the collection of photos and
accounts of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPS) who served
during World War II, ferrying planes from aircraft factories to
training bases throughout the country, training male pilots, testing
aircraft and transporting cargo. More than 1,000 WASPS were trained at
Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas, and they logged more than 60
million air miles.
The collection also includes Anne Frank (1929-1945), the
Jewish-German teenager who hid with her family to escape the Nazis
during World War II, documenting the 25-month ordeal in her diary. Her
father, the sole survivor of the Frank family, later published the now
The exhibit features entertainment pioneer Lucille Ball (1911-1989)
for her role in changing the television industry when she became the
sole owner of the Desilu Production Company and the first woman to run
a television studio. Artists Frida Kahlo (1907-1954) and Georgia
O'Keeffe (1887-1986) are included for their major contributions to the
The theme "We Can Do It" sums up the changing landscape
women faced between 1925 and 1950, when they entered the workforce en
mass to support the war effort, even as they continued to hold the
family together as wives and mothers.
Morgan Legate was born too early.
Ray Legate and daughter Morgan thank the employees of the
Health Science Center for raising money through the annual HealthWalk
to support the March of Dimes.
At only 24 weeks of gestation, Morgan entered the world at 1 pound,
11 ounces with a host of medical problems that often accompany a
Within 10 days of her arrival, Morgan underwent heart surgery. She
was given medicines to keep her premature lungs from collapsing and
spent 94 days in the neonatal intensive care unit at University
Hospital, where she was treated by Health Science Center researcher
Dr. Robert Castro. Physicians gave the little girl a 50 percent chance
Today Morgan, who just turned 2 years old on April 1, is a bundle
of energy who runs and plays with her parents, Ray and Carole Legate.
She is a healthy, happy toddler thanks in large part to the top-notch
care she received and the March of Dimes, an organization that has
spent the better part of the 20th century funding pioneering research
to fight birth defects.
Morgan Legate enjoys playing at the Health Science Center
HealthWalk event to benefit the March of Dimes. Morgan, now 2 years
old, was born at 24 weeks and suffered from a variety of medical
problems. She is a healthy toddler thanks to the work the March of
Dimes supports to fight birth defects and to treat premature infants.
Among the many advances in neonatal care that have been discovered
as a result of March of Dimes funding, the development of surfactant
is one of the most important for premature infants like Morgan.
Surfactant is a substance often missing from the lungs of premature,
extremely low birth weight infants. Without it, the tiny lungs
To show support for the work the March of Dimes continues to do for
children, and to raise money for the organization to fund ongoing
research, Health Science Center employees took to the track for the
17th Annual March of Dimes HealthWalk.
HealthWalk is the professional component to the March of Dimes
WalkAmerica program. Health-Walk is unique to San Antonio, providing a
way for health professionals to raise money to support valuable
Health Science Center employees take to the track for the annual
March of Dimes HealthWalk for children.
This year more than 500 Health Science Center employees
participated in the event and raised more than $22,000 for the March
of Dimes. The organization uses the donations to conduct research,
develop vaccines and support neonatal intensive care units, among
"I want to thank the March of Dimes for all of the research
and technology it has supported over the years, and for taking the
time to care about premature babies," said Ray Legate. "It
makes all the difference to people like us, and these donations save
babies like Morgan."
Dr. Jaime Garza, surgery, talks with Genesis Martinez, one of
his young plastic surgery patients. Martinez was born with a cleft
palate and lip, which were corrected by Dr. Garza
Dr. Jaime R. Garza, associate professor of surgery, was one of 50
practicing physicians selected to participate in the American Medical
Association (AMA)/Glaxo Wellcome Emerging Leaders Development Program.
The program was held March 25 in Miami in conjunction with the AMA's
National Leadership Development Conference.
Dr. Garza, a board-certified plastic surgeon and otolaryngologist,
is head of the Department of Surgery's Division of Plastic and
Reconstructive Surgery. He was the only physician from South Texas,
and one of only three statewide, invited to the AMA/Glaxo Wellcome
program. The event is an intensive leadership development program with
emphasis on legislative advocacy. The 50 physicians were selected on
the basis of their demonstrated leadership potential, commitment to
leadership development, participation in organized medicine and
diversity of leadership experience.
Dr. Garza received his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree in 1983 from
the Louisiana State University School of Dentistry in New Orleans and
his Doctor of Medicine degree from the LSU School of Medicine in 1987.
He completed a general surgery internship and microvascular surgery
research residency at the Health Science Center before moving to a
fellowship at the U. T. M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and his
otolaryngology/head and neck surgery residency at LSU.
After completing his second residency in plastic and reconstructive
surgery at the University of Pittsburgh, he was recruited to the
Health Science Center in 1994 to develop a training program in plastic
and reconstructive surgery.
Mark Your Calendar!
Fiesta de Tejas, the Health Science Center's official Fiesta event,
will include a variety of new activities this year at its larger
Fiestagoers may enjoy karaoke, human bowling and live music and
entertainment. More than 50 booths will offer crafts, jewelry, Fiesta
souvenirs, clothing, a variety of food and drinks, and the
This year's celebration includes an expanded children's area that
will include face painting and a children's stage with musical groups
Fiesta de Tejas will be held from 5 p.m. to midnight Thursday,
April 27, at the recreational area near the pavilion.
Tickets are $4 in advance and $6 at the gate. Children 12 and under
and adults 65 and older get into the event for free. Tickets are on
sale at the Health Science Center bookstore, the South Texas Veterans
Health Care System Audie L. Murphy Division public affairs office and
through the Fiesta Commission centralized ticket sales.
Volunteers are needed to help with the Fiesta event. For more
information on volunteer opportunities, contact Herlinda Carreon at
ext. 7-2400 or by e-mail at carreon@ uthscsa.edu. Visit
the Fiesta Web site at www.