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Winter 2013


Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine

The proper use of the word “excellent” is not taken lightly at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, for at LECOM, the meaning of “excellence” is indeed its definition. For at LECOM, excellence embodies exceptionalism, reaching for the highest good, the most purposed result, and the most innovative discovery.

“Destination Excellence” A Journey along LECOM’s Purposed and Resolute Path of Exceptionalism The local barista serves a steaming cup of coffee to an eager customer and the patron’s response is: “excellent!” A client appears punctually for his scheduled appointment and the office worker replies: “excellent!” A package reaches its intended place of delivery and the recipient exclaims: “excellent!” The word “excellent” is bandied about to the point of casual excess in today’s parlance. Yet, the meaning and the true essence of the word does not embody the ordinary performance of properly executed tasks. In sad commentary upon our societal devolution, “excellence” has come to represent any mundane act that is merely carried out to its proper degree of completion. However, in truth “excellence” derives from the word “excel” – to do well or better: “to do better than all others, to exceed a given standard, or to surpass previous achievement”. The proper use of the word “excellent” is not taken lightly at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, for at LECOM, the meaning of “excellence” is indeed its definition. For at LECOM, excellence embodies exceptionalism, reaching for the highest good, the most purposed result, and the most innovative discovery. It is never the “mundane”, the “common-place”, or the “mediocre” masquerading as something more. Perhaps, the relative norm endorses the notion of bolstering self-esteem by the frequent and casual casting of abundant accolades upon even the slightest hint of rudimentary accomplishment. LECOM however, holds high the bar with unabashed satisfaction; for to attain the most noble of achievements is requiring of the most ardent of

efforts – moreover, those efforts must be paired with successful results. For this reason, the “LECOM Connection” will dedicate each of the issues contained in the 2013 publication year to its comprehensive theme: “Destination Excellence”. The through-line presents the proper choice to highlight the truly excellent attainments, accomplishments, and results that place LECOM in the vanguard of educational distinction. For in every endeavor, LECOM holds at its heart its mission to provide excellence in education at an affordable cost. The task is challenging and it is one not easily gained; yet it is one that is unwaveringly offered with great assiduity by LECOM. The path to such worthy effects is winding and varied; it takes many forms, welcomes many people, and embraces many ideas. It is a mission, built upon a vision melded with action – for “visionaries” make the future and “doers” shape the world. From cutting-edge facilities to innovative student-centered learning; from top Board scores to prolific student and faculty publishing, from clinical firsts to community betterment, from a world-class Fitness and Wellness Center to a plethora of public outreach programs – the list of shining accomplishments is exhaustive. Most important – the list is replete with successful results and unsurpassed outcomes. That is “excellence”! That is the terminus of LECOM’s every undertaking, that is the very foundation of LECOM’s mission, and that is: “Destination Excellence”. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 3

A Message from the President

John M. Ferretti, DO - President/CEO 4 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

A Message from the President

Exceptionalism! It is a word which in utterance has been heard seldom in recent years. It is the central subject of my President’s Message and it is the theme of this edition of “The LECOM Connection”. A term dating back to the early 1800s, the idea of American exceptionalism originates in our nation’s early days when Alexis de Tocqueville was the first writer to use the term “exceptional” to describe the United States. In the 1960s, “post-nationalist” scholars rejected the idea, suggesting that the U.S. had not broken from European history and that class inequalities and imperialism persisted. Two decades later, in the 1980s, former President, Ronald Reagan revived our confidence in American excellence as he masterfully communicated the idea of exceptionalism as America’s national purpose as “a shining city on a hill.” The modern idea of American exceptionalism commonly refers to the awareness that America is a special country because of its matchless beliefs in life, liberty, individualism, and the right to pursue one’s dream. Today, the term is but a vapor as our populous finds itself lost in despair, wandering aimlessly through economic strife and national dissonance. Our civic leaders and even our nation’s President trivialize our country’s excellence believing in American exceptionalism in the same way that the “Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism.” Far and away however, I find our purpose as a people and as a nation unparalleled to any other. For this reason, I wish to talk with you about the deeper meaning of the word; one which extends to the core of who we are as a people and to the role that each of us – as medical professionals and as Americans – plays in the world. Throughout history, exceptional individuals exist that compensate the deficiencies of the time and in no place has such exceptionalism flourished more profoundly than in our country. In those moments, when humanity is found collectively in a state of dissipation, there always remain those exceptional beings, pursuing exceptional goals who serve

as our North Star. Perhaps that is the reason that LECOM has found itself, both as an institution and as a trailblazer in medical education, ever aspiring to the pinnacle of potential; to explore the farthest extents of its capabilities, to stand in the vanguard of cutting-edge instruction, and to reach ever more committedly into the communities that it has come to serve. As former President John Kennedy pressed our collective spirit to the lofty frontiers of space exploration – placing a “man on the moon and bringing him home safely again”, the American vision of the possible never wavered. “We do these things,” Kennedy expounded, “not because they are easy, he reminded, “but because they are hard”. In its time, LECOM has found purpose in its own aspirational objectives infused with the exceptionalism of a generation and understanding that all great, honorable, and meaningful actions are attended with equally great challenges – and both must be innovated and surmounted with responsible courage. Something else aided those who made America the exceptional lofty beacon of hope for all mankind – from the days of the Revolution, to its founding, through Civil War and global war, through trials of every nature at home and abroad: the unshakeable belief that Providence would have a great hand in the events that would unfold here; that God was an ally in this great cause; and that our course was greater than ourselves. These are the beliefs that impel us; these are the principles that fashioned our people; and these are the radiant lights of “exceptionalism” so integral to LECOM’s very identity. Thus, I wish to leave you with this important idea. Those of us who believe in “exceptionalism” – that America is the last place on Earth where man and woman alike may be truly free, where we do not believe that others can manage our lives better than we ourselves, where the very fabric of America is crafted by our belief in our purpose and by a fulfillment of that belief through determined and responsible action

– I ask you to travel along this path with me; for we at LECOM shall never be lost by the erosion of our will to succeed. It is our commitment to train the doctors, pharmacists, dentists, and health care professionals of generations to come never to become complacent in their own lives and to persevere in recognizing the greatness of the individual human spirit. LECOM has ever embraced that spirit – from our formation more than two decades past wherein this very school found its genesis by rising above an arena of doubt that permeated the medical field, through the growing pains of development, through the resistance of seemingly insuperable obstacles too numerous of which to lay account – has LECOM found its “exceptionalism”. Our campuses – growing from one to many – have focused upon goals that have served to organize and to measure the best of our energies and skills. Just as this nation was forged by those who moved forward – beyond the superficially unimaginable or the exceedingly implausible – we ever strive for exceptionalism in our purpose. Of course, it is not simply praise of past greatness that inspires us – it is optimism for the future – that infusion of unquenchable optimism that America’s best days exist in her future rather than in her past, that a moral certainty in America’s principles and values will triumph over darkness, and that each one of us can bring about that triumph both through the labors of our calling and through the calling of our Creator. In this issue of “The LECOM Connection”, I invite you to journey with me and to take heart in experiencing “exceptionalism” where it lives. From our students exhibiting excellence through prolific publishing or through productive community service; from outstanding donors to standout scholars; from innovations in education to advancements across our depth and breadth of campus settings – LECOM nurtures exceptionalism upon every level. The spirit of accomplishment and the anticipation of the possible fill the air of every LECOM campus where the visionary dreams of the outwardly inconceivable become the revelations of reality. Yes, “exceptionalism” is alive and well at LECOM. We welcome it, we instill it, and we live it. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 5

Table of Contents

Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine 1858 West Grandview Blvd. Erie, PA 16509 814-866-6641

John M. Ferretti, DO President

Michael J. Visnosky, Esquire Chairman of the Board of Trustees

Silvia M. Ferretti, DO

Provost, Senior Vice President and Dean of Academic Affairs

Hershey Bell, MD, M.S. (MedEd)

Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of the School of Pharmacy

Robert F. Hirsch, DDS

Dean of the School of Dental Medicine

Robert George, DO

Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Bradenton

Sunil S. Jambhekar, PhD Associate Dean for Bradenton Operations, School of Pharmacy

Pierre Bellicini

Director of Communications

Eric Nicastro

Assistant Director of Communications and Marketing

Michael Polin

Assistant Director of Communications and Marketing, Bradenton

Rebecca A. DeSimone, Esquire Chief Writer/Editor-in-Chief

The LECOM Connection invites you to contribute to our publication. If you have news of alumni achievements, research or student activities, please contact the Communications Department, at (814) 866-6641, or e-mail

/1LECOM /1LECOM 6 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

Table of Contents

8 10 11 12 14 20 21 23 24 25 26 28 31

Health Care Education in Erie Destined for Excellence through LECOM Generosity LECOM School of Dental Medicine Clinic Opens with Unstinting Gift to the Community LECOM Shapes the Future of Medical Education through Anatomy Outreach LECOM Celebrates Tradition and the Promise of Exceptionalism at White Coat Ceremonies LECOM Raises the Highest Amount in Scholarship Auction History Prolific Publishing Year for LECOM Accelerated Physician Assistant Pathway Student Someone Else’s Story – Osteopathic Principles Guided LECOM Staff Member to Joyful Outcome A Gift to match a calling LECOM Students Impress Neighbors at Apartments near LECOM Erie Excellence in Education Begins as Early as junior high school LECOM Bradenton Medical Student Brings Artistic Joy to New Pediatric Wing at Lakewood Ranch Medical Center

Community is Our Campus faculty, student and alumni notes

Mission Statement The mission of the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine is to prepare students to become osteopathic physicians, pharmacy practitioners and dentists through programs of excellence in education, research, clinical care and community service to enhance the quality of life through improved health for all humanity.

in MY own words A few years ago I was studying for the priesthood. After discovering that my vocation was not to the religious life, I knew that I could not withdraw from that degree of commitment and service to mankind. After running through my options, I felt that medicine was the best way that I could continue to give at that same level. My seminary formation taught me to utilize time as one of the greatest assets that we have. It also taught me to work hard; to manage, organize, and prioritize effectively. So when I came out of the seminary I was searching for a path that would continue to challenge me and improve upon the foundation that had been laid. Searching brought me several excellent options, but in the end I chose the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine. I had heard good things about their programs, their educational goals, opportunities for service in the local communities, and participation in local, regional, and national organizations. It was their direct involvement with people on all these levels that was one of the things that first attracted me, as I knew that I would be working with people, individuals, right away. My own research confirmed all of this as I looked up testimonies and spoke with “Student Ambassadors” about their own experiences of the LECOM family. I met students who were genuinely on fire with their calling. I encountered friendly faculty who are truly interested in the wellbeing of their students and are willing to put in the time to make sure that you succeed. After three terms on campus I can say that LECOM has been everything I expected it to be and more. They challenge me in the curriculum, have faculty that I can go to whenever I have questions, provide many opportunities for service in the various communities via clubs and other organizations for any interest that lay

Joseph Yeager (P1)

the foundations for reproducing those services in my future professional career.

On The Cover

LECOM students face their future realizing the opportunities they have at the college.

In addition, LECOM’s osteopathic medicine methodology, while always striving to be at the forefront of modern medical practices, also emphasized the spiritual component of the person and patients we would be seeing and treating every day. With the greater diversity that we are seeing in our country, these additional points have helped to further develop my universality, with the ability to adapt to the specific needs of any group. The programs are not easy, nor should they be. My time at LECOM has been both a challenge and an exciting personal journey of growth and development. If you are willing to roll up your sleeves and put in the time and effort that is demanded of a doctoral program, you will discover all the means you need to make a successful and well-formed career in the medical field.

Inside Cover The cover features three students (inside cover L-R) Katherine Conway (OMS1), Ashley Ramp (P1) and Joseph Yeager (P1).

STUDENTS: If you would like to be featured in the “IN MY OWN WORDS” section of a future LECOM Connection, please send your story in 500 words or less to | winter 2013 | lecom connection 7

Health Care Education in Erie Destined for Excellence through LECOM Generosity

David McGarvey, DO, (L) Chief Internal Medicine Resident at Millcreek Community Hospital demonstrates a lumbar puncture on Traumaman while Internal Medicine Residency Director Eric Milie, DO, (C) assists at the Gannon Patient Simulation Center.

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Two medical simulation units for the Gannon University health care training lab were the result of a substantial and unstinting gift from the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine. Gannon University received $50,000 from LECOM to purchase two new medical simulation devices. The special and lasting bond shared by Gannon University and LECOM recognizes them as leaders in first-rate and innovative education. As such, the two schools consistently work collaboratively to enhance the medical training available to local and regional health care providers. The recent gift from LECOM to Gannon has allowed the University to add the TraumaMan and MicroMaxx Ultrasound systems to its Patient Simulation Center. TraumaMan is a simulated human torso form designed to allow students to practice a number of advanced medical procedures, including central line insertion and chest tube placement. TraumaMan is equipped with four surgical “zones” and it is designed as a better and more practical alternative to training students by using cadavers or other models. In addition to central line insertion and chest tube placement/ insertion, other surgical procedures and skills that can be practiced with TraumaMan, include diagnostic peritoneal lavage, pericardiocentesis, cricothyroidotomy, percutaneous tracheostomy, needle decompression, intravenous cutdown, and bowel anastomosis. The MicroMaxx Ultrasound System provides quality imaging for ease and accuracy for central line placement. Both systems greatly enhance the Gannon Simulation Center. Provost & Vice President of Academic Affairs of Gannon University, Dr. Carolynn Masters expressed her delight with the equipment. “Gannon University is very grateful to LECOM for its generosity and for its support of the Patient Simulation Center” stated Dr. Masters. She especially noted that the gift will be instrumental in aiding Gannon in the advancement of the strategic goal of the Simulation Center by offering educational outreach options coupled with providing an increased level of medical education to a broader audience. The Millcreek Community Hospital residents are already using the equipment. Recently,

a class of Internal Medicine residents from Millcreek Community Hospital spent a day at the Simulation Center perfecting their skills with the help of TraumaMan. Prior to their visit, Gannon Health Professions and Sciences faculty worked collectively with faculty from LECOM to design a training program for the residents and for LECOM Primary Care Scholars Pathway Students – one of two, three-year doctor of osteopathic medicine degree programs offered at LECOM. LECOM made the decision to support the Simulation Center after observing the clear advantages of training physicians who will be using the skills garnered through this program to teach LECOM medical students. “Simulation Center training is on the cutting edge of medical education,” explained Silvia M. Ferretti, DO, Provost, Senior Vice President and Dean of Academic Affairs at LECOM. “Residents find the hands-on training essential for practicing procedures that can only be learned by repetition. Learning with these manikins develops muscle memory so that when the physician has a real patient, the procedure takes place naturally and safely.” Ultimately, the program will involve interprofessional training of LECOM medical students who will work alongside Gannon nursing and physician assistant students in patient simulations training; a practice that is intended to replicate the way in which physicians, nurses, and medical professionals interact as a health care team in a hospital or clinic setting. Dr. Masters displayed eager optimism at the idea of the Simulation Center offering training to resident physicians from Millcreek Community and from other health care providers. LECOM and Gannon University share a strong educational partnership and that includes offering a world-class Simulation Center that serves both as an asset to the community and to our students. As LECOM travels along its incontrovertible path to excellence, it is clear that joint alliances such as the one shared with Gannon will forge the educational innovations and the superlatively trained medical professionals of the 21st century. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 9

LECOM School of Dental Medicine Clinic Opens with Unstinting Gift to the Community “Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present.” ~ Albert Camus

Faculty member Claire Collins, DMD (L) examines denture moldings with first-year dental students Tim Bradberry (C) and Grant Hardesty (R).

In January, LECOM dental students aided by faculty members began providing dental care to the southwest Florida community. Phase I of the LECOM School of Dental Medicine (SDM) Clinic is providing dentures to individuals on a need-based format. Patients from the community and clients from the Community Coalition on Homelessness through the Bill Galvano One-Stop Center in Bradenton are registered for the oral service. Thus far, 40 new patients are scheduled to receive free dentures. LECOM is providing $10,000 in patient care to the clients of the One-Stop Center. This generous contribution underscores the abiding community support and commitment to service that the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine holds at its core. For as Aristotle explained and LECOM understands, the truly great attributes of existence are comprised of three signs: purposed generosity, courage to act, and a defined goal of success. SDM Students are assigned to a patient with whom they will work to provide oral

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Igor Bilokopytov and Gibson Boswell review a patient’s chart.

health and new dentures. Patients return for follow-up visits as determined by the clinicians. The 15 chair dental clinic features outstanding state-of-the-art technology, including panoramic (all teeth), periapical (individual teeth) and 3-D (whole head) X-Ray machines. Students also “input” patient records through an accurate and reliable record-keeping software program. As the program develops, comprehensive dental care (Phase II) will be available to the community in March of 2014. The anticipated oral health care benefit to the community coupled with the superlative training experiences for students provides a dual advantage both to citizen and scholar alike. LECOM is proud to offer this innovative and ground-breaking service to the region. As the school remains resolute in its commitment to the advancement of excellence in education, this endeavor serves as demonstrative evidence that the “community is our campus” and at LECOM – the destination is always “excellence”.

LECOM Shapes the Future of Medical Education through Anatomy Outreach If you have knowledge, let others light their candles in it. ~Margaret Fuller

Over the past months, Dr. Randy Kulesza has held Anatomy Outreach programs that have brought nearly 200 high school and college students to the LECOM Erie anatomy lab for educational projects. Dr. Kulesza is Director of the Auditory Research Center and Associate Professor of Anatomy at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine. He is a graduate of Gannon University with a Bachelor of Science in Biology. Dr. Kulesza earned his Ph.D. at West Virginia University in Anatomy and Neuroscience. His deep love of science fuels his desire to encourage young men and women to explore the sciences with the hope that tomorrow’s medical and health care professionals may find inspiration for their love of learning at LECOM. There is a great value and power in igniting a spark of knowledge; it is a catalyst for prodigious accomplishment and it presents an opportunity for many students to investigate an area in which they may possess interest, but previously have not had exposure. Dr. Kulesza has been working with local high schools and colleges to encourage that interest in science and to facilitate exposure to the discipline. Students from Edinboro University, McDowell, Fort LeBoeuf, Harborcreek, and General McLane high schools as well as the Great Lakes Institute of Technology participated in the Anatomy Outreach sessions. This important educational experience helps to attract students to the sciences and it familiarizes them with the abundant educational opportunities available for them at LECOM. Students shadow instructors, undertake rigorous assignments in the field, and learn about key elements in their area of interest. Dr. Kulesza’s Anatomy Outreach has generated considerable response,

Randy Kulesza, PhD visits General McLane High School biology class.

when, in December and January, LECOM welcomed a bevy of Erie Area students to the LECOM anatomy lab. As a result of integrated programs such as Anatomy Outreach, General McLane High School has developed a Science Academy program through which the school has been working closely with LECOM. The Academy of Arts and Engineering at General McLane was created in order to better prepare students for careers in medicine and engineering. Through partnerships with organizations and universities such as LECOM, Academy classes are enriched with practical and real-world application to sciencerelated activities.

Outreach assists students in organizing their knowledge now, to plan their life for tomorrow. Bringing awareness and enlightenment to high school and college students potentially interested in the sciences builds the foundation of the future of scientific and medical exploration and training. LECOM takes profound satisfaction in the fact that the student whose interest is piqued today may be the ground-breaking researcher or skilled surgeon of the future.

Programs such as Anatomy Outreach comprise an important part of the LECOM mission of superlative education coupled with focused community service. Through the ages, philosophers have explained that science is organized knowledge, while wisdom is organized life. Anatomy | winter 2013 | lecom connection 11

LECOM Celebrates Tradition and the Promise of Exceptionalism at White Coat Ceremonies As the ancient Roman poet Horace explained: “No man ever reached to excellence in any art or profession without having passed through the slow and painful process of study and preparation”. There are few events that underscore that premise or that give rise to chest-swelling joy and fulfillment as does the grand tradition of the White Coat Ceremony. This event venerates one of the high points of the college year as a tribute to achievement. The “White Coat Ceremony” is a time-honored affair at medical schools that functions as a “ceremonial rite of passage” – a pronouncement of a psychological contract that creates a bond uniting professionalism and empathy in the study and practice of medicine. On January 26, 2013, medical and pharmacy students at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine memorialized their transition from classroom study to clinical education in a ceremony held at the Harvest Centre in Bradenton, Florida. The students received their symbolic White Coats in a celebration that signifies the zenith of a glorious experience for all of the first year students who have so adeptly primed themselves academically and mentally for the challenges that await them. The occasion signifies a readiness to embrace their calling. The event reaches more profoundly to the purpose of a life dedicated to health care – for although the transitory celebration reflects a pinnacle moment at LECOM to a year companioned by a commitment to hard work, sacrifice, and perseverance, it also signifies a new beginning to invest oneself into the total immersion of heart, mind, and spirit in the pursuit of exceptionalism in one of the noblest of all professions. The White Coat is emblematic of a trust between doctor and patient; of compassion, and of the medical professional’s purity of purpose. The first LECOM White Coat Ceremony was celebrated in 1996. Each successive year recognizes an observance of the priceless significance of training physicians in the combined facets of medical knowledge and compassionate care. The two indivisibly connected qualities – honed and sharpened to perfection – result in the most optimally trained and caring physicians and pharmacists in society today. During the two ceremonies on the last Saturday in January, 132 School of Pharmacy students and 195 College of Medicine students in the Class of 2016 pledged, in the presence of their families, faculty members, and peers, to uphold professionalism and competence within their respective practices. 12 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

The students now are prepared to embark upon the highest quality in medical education as they begin to work with physicians and pharmacists in clinical courses and practices. There, they will learn to partner with their patients for the betterment of health for all whom they serve. College of Medicine Keynote Speaker Sasha Noe, DO, addressed the medical gathering with words of inspiration and advice. Dr. Noe is a graduate of the LECOM Bradenton Class of 2009. Dr. Noe centered her keynote remarks upon the abiding theme of “trust”, emphasizing the various forms of trust exhibited by the patient in a physician and the important and significant responsibility that such faith entails. Keynote Speaker, Jennifer Mejia, addressed the assemblage as the pharmacy ombudsman. She is a PharmD, having been graduated from LECOM Bradenton Class of 2011 – LECOM Bradenton’s first pharmacy graduating class. Her keynote offered pearls of advice addressing “camaraderie, adaptability, and the will to seize opportunities as they arise”. Dr. Mejia explained that “while the White Coat is made of 100% cotton and feels light as a feather, the burden of responsibility and accountability that it connotes falls heavy”. Both speakers’ messages underscored the profound and enduring significance of wearing the White Coat. The intensely emotional moments evince the profundity of the promise of exceptional training, dedication, and service. There is an unshakeable significance of professional responsibility and trust attendant to the wearing of the White Coat; one that connotes the pledge that each care giver will be an advocate for patients and will never tire in the quest to prevent harm to patients from adverse medical events. The ceremony serves always as an occasion for first-year students to reaffirm the commitment that they made to become proficient osteopathic physicians and pharmacists while, simultaneously validating the ever-present commitment of LECOM to provide exceptional academic and clinical training to ensure that its students attain these worthy goals. With the appreciative acknowledgment that Providence guides the hands, hearts, and minds of the men and women who wear the White Coats, they set forth to deliver their gifts to the larger communities in which they will serve to answer their purposed calling.



Kymberly Moyer (OMS1) and Curt Moyer Kristian Balle (OMS1) with wife, Malori and son, Dawson.


Lorynn Hunter (OMS1) and Sarah Phipps (OMS1). Rebecca Pettet (P1), Marcella Issa (P1) and Xing Xing Cao (P1) | winter 2013 | lecom connection 13

LECOM Raises the Highest Amount in Scholarship Auction History

Rhyan Maditz (OMS2), displays a watch during the live auction in Erie.

LECOM Erie Scholarship Auction

Paola Ferretti, wife of Anthony Ferretti, DO, places her bid during the live auction in Erie.

The always eagerly anticipated LECOM Student Scholarship Fund Dinner and Auction Gala in Bradenton garnered an impressive $215,000 this year making it the most money raised in the event’s eight-year philanthropic history. Leaders in the fields of medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy gathered with community leaders and notables to dine and to bid during an evening benefitting the LECOM Student Scholarship Fund. Most medical, pharmacy, and dental students graduate with excessive amounts of student loan indebtedness that can approach $250,000. The challenges of a new climate in the medical field coupled with uncertainty and instability in the economic forecast make the monies raised at the yearly event even more welcome and necessary for these deserving students as all proceeds from the event benefit the Scholarship Fund. The gala was held at the Hyatt Regency Sarasota on October 27th and the grand assembly boasted a record 430 14 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

LECOM Pharmacy students (L-R) Joseph Conte (P2), Ashley Ramp (P1), Santina Scotti (P2) display jewelry before the live auction in Erie.

in attendance with 43 tables purchased by Auction Gala sponsors. Willis A. Smith Construction, Incorporated and Benco Dental were among the 55 generous sponsors who magnanimously support the future of health care with their charitable donations. As is ever the trend at the LECOM Auction Gala, many interesting and unusual items drew the attention of the bidders. The top items this year included travel destinations with holidays to Vail, Colorado; Oahu, Hawaii; and Charleston, SC. as the prized getaway locales. A stunningly hand-crafted violin built by LECOM Associate Dean of Pre-Clinical Education, Mark Coty, PhD proved to be an exceptional auction item. As violinist and first-year dental student, Jean Kim filled the air with the magical music of the amazing instrument; her captivating violin solo drew nearly $3,000 to win the prize. All told, the Bradenton Auction Gala boasted 16 live auction

Jessica Rimkus (OMS2), Mark Coty, PhD and Patrice Coty

Adam Haber (D1).

items and 209 silent auction prizes with every single item bringing great benefit to the future of health care. An equally exciting and profitable Auction Gala was held to thronging guests in Erie, Pennsylvania on the evening of November 3rd at the Bayfront Convention Center. The Erie event capped its highest amount in the 19 year history of the grand affair. The Annual Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Student Scholarship Auction concluded with over $1,000,000 generously donated by friends of LECOM, alumni, and local area businesses. Nearly 1,000 guests were in attendance and all money raised benefited the LECOM Student Scholarship Fund. This year’s Attendees placed substantial bids on more than 700 silent as well as 28 live auction items. Auction articles this year ranged from artwork to travel escapes in Cancun and New York City. Household goods, holiday adornments, exclusive jewelry, and sporting event tickets filled the auction tables and bidders’ guide. Among the many esteemed guests

Jean Kim (D1) plays the violin.

were found: Bishop Lawrence Persico, who was recently installed as the 10th bishop of the Erie Catholic Diocese as well as government leaders Congressman Mike Kelly; former Congressman Phil English; former Pennsylvania First Lady Michele Ridge; Erie Mayor Joseph Sinnott; former Mayor Joyce Savocchio; Erie City Councilman, Bob Merski; Millcreek Township Supervisors Brian McGrath and Joe Kujawa; and Senator Sean Wiley and Representative Ryan Bizzaro. Also joining LECOM were the presidents of two colleges that have become prodigious partners with LECOM: Dr. Joann Boyle from Seton Hill University (where LECOM holds classes for medical students) and Dr. Thomas Gamble, President of Mercyhurst University (where LECOM sports medicine physicians serve as team physicians and Medical Associates of Erie provides student health services). Baltimore Orioles left fielder, Nolan Reimold, the brother of LECOM medical student Shamus Reimold, also was an auction attendee. In sum, both of the dual fundraising operations – in Erie and in Bradenton - enabled LECOM to raise over $1,200,000 for the Student Scholarship Fund. The 10 percent increase from last year demonstrates that the philanthropic spirit grows stronger even in the face of difficult and challenging times in the American economy. LECOM’s inexorable commitment to its students and to the promise of a better tomorrow in health care stands the test of all trials. In addition to the superlative philanthropic results of a grand pair of evenings – both north and south – LECOM’s Board of Directors will match the amounts raised, providing substantial scholarships for deserving medical, dental, and pharmacy students. Many LECOM students served as auction volunteers at the auction. They were visibly and vocally appreciative of the hundreds of guests and donors who made each of the nights a resounding triumph. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 15

sponsors of the 2012 lecom Erie scholarship fund


Emerald SPONSORS - $20,000

Mary L. Eckert John M. Ferretti, DO Silvia M. Ferretti, DO First National Bank Esther J. Fucci Hakel Fabrizio Financial Group — UBS Vantage Healthcare Orris Hirtzel Foundation Roberta C. Holiday Estate Erie Community Foundation Erdman

DIAMOND SPONSORS - $15,000 Richard P. Olinger

RUBY SPONSORS - $12,000 First Niagara Hubbard Bert, Inc. Highmark Millcreek Community Hospital

PLATINUM SPONSORS - $10,000 Sen. Durell Peaden & Nancy Peaden Seton Hill University Walgreens


Church & Murdock Electric, Inc. Millcreek Community Hospital Staff Power Wellness Management, LLC

SILVER SPONSORS - $5,000 Audio Visual Inovations Building Systems, Inc. Coffee Culture Cafe and Eatery CVS Caremark Vincent S. Fierro Jr., DO

16 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

Erie Elite Basketball First Energy Corporation Hagan Business Machines LECOM John M. and Silvia Ferretti Medical Fitness and Wellness Center Lilly Broadcasting —WICU, WSEE & The CW LM Wander and Sons Landscaping LORD Corporation Marquette Savings Bank NACDS Foundation Networking Technologies Advocates of POMA Rabe Environmental Systems, Inc. WJET-TV & FOX 66 Victorian Princess


Arent Fox LLP George H. Althof, Inc. Art Arkelian Hershey S. Bell, MD & Marianne Bell Thomas Czarnecki, DO & Alice Czarnecki Steve & Dana Demetriou Carlo DiMarco, DO & Maria DiMarco Erie Otters Hockey Ronald A. Esper, DO & Kathleen Esper Karl Falk, DO Anthony Ferretti, DO, & Paola Ferretti Irving Freeman, PhD, JD & Julie Freeman, JD Health Fusion Heart Institute of UPMC Hamot Howard Hanna Real Estate Services Mark Kauffman, DO & Michelle Roth Kauffman, JD Suzanne Kelley, DO Dolores Kutzer, PharmD Lathrop Electric, Inc. LECOM Student Government Association Shawn & Julie Liebel Malady and Wooten Maleno Development Medical Associates of Erie

sponsors of the 2012 lecom Erie scholarship fund We gratefully acknowledge contributions made to the LECOM Scholarship Fund by our sponsors. Northwestern Mutual Perry Constrution PremCom Richard Ortoski, DO Printing Concepts Richards and Associates Dennis & Sandy Styn Scott Enterprises UPS Foundation Judy Zboyovski

PATRONS - $1,500

A. Anthony & Sons & Gresh General Contractors Alex Roofing Company, Inc. Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania John Balmer, DO & Pat Balmer. RN Ranko Barac, DO, & Melissa Barac, PharmD Bialosky + Partners Architects Cardinal Health Practice Carrara Steel Edinboro University of Pennsylvania Engel O’Neil Advertising ENT Specialists of NWPA Erie Bank Edward Faber, DO Robert George, DO & Goldie George Erica Grazioli, DO & John Grazioli Paul & Debbie Hakel Danielle Hansen, DO & Corey Hansen Insurance Management Company Marguerite Evanoff Jurkovic, DO & Ivan Jurkovic John Kalata, DO & Roberta Kalata Paul Kohut, DO & Dawn Kohut Knox McLaughlin Gornall & Sennett James Lin, DO & Emma Lin Paul Martin Mercyhurst University Eric Milie, D.O. & Christina Milie Joan Moore, D.O. MCH Psychiatrists

Joseph McCormick Construction Morgan Stanley Northshore Clinical Associates Northwest Savings Bank Oasis Footwear Penn State Erie, The Behrend College Pennsylvania Osteopathic Medical Association William Phelps, MD Ronco Communications Rite Aid Chip Rohrback, DO & Elaine Rohrback Saint Vincent Health System Joyce Savocchio Schaffner, Knight, Minnaugh Schultz Furniture Superstore Regan Shabloski, D.O. & Cheryl Moore, DO Sodexo, Inc. Stairways Behavioral Health William Swagler III, DO Mark Terrell, EdD Tiny Tim’s Fishing Charters Turner Dairy Farms Frank Tursi, DO UPMC CommunityCare Urban Engineers Village SurgiCenter Thomas & Lorraine Wedzik Westlake Family Medicine Friends of Sean Wiley | winter 2013 | lecom connection 17

sponsors of the 2012 lecom Bradenton scholarship fund We gratefully acknowledge contributions made to the LECOM Scholarship Fund by our sponsors. Platinum - $10,000

Benco Dental John M. Ferretti, DO Silvia M. Ferretti, DO Hyatt Regency Sarasota SRQ Media Group Willis A. Smith Construction, Inc.

Silver Sponsors - $5,000 The Cleveland Clinic Coca-Cola Bottling Group CVS Caremark Pharmacy Lost Creek Resort Apartments Vanessa Fine Jewelry

Bronze Sponsors - $2,500

Cadence Bank Stephen Coppa, DO Dental Services Group - Clearwater Fawley Bryant Architects Jackson Landscape Professionals, Inc. Jeffrey Grove, DO - Suncoast Family Medical Associates Grow Financial Credit Union Meisinger USA Premier Dental Products Prime Parking Systems Regions Bank SHOFU Dental Corporation Southern Dental Industries VitalSource Technologies Whip Mix Corporation

Patron Sponsors - $1,500

5/3 Bank The Auto Club Group BB&T Bank Bridget Bellingar, DO Robert Brochu, DO Francis Curd, DDS & Pamela Curd DR Horton Homes Chet Evans, DPM & Capt. Lynn Evans Anthony Ferretti, DO 18 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

Florida Osteopathic Medical Association FOMA District 7 Robert George, DO and Goldie George Anton Gotlieb, DDS & Susan Gotlieb Nancy Havens, DDS & Charles Tomeo, DMD Dean and Mrs. Robert Hirsch Hubbard, Bert, Karle and Weber Insurance, Inc. Manatee Healthcare System Sen. John and Michelle McKay Craig Misch, DDS Jeffrey Myers, JD & Edie Myers Neal Communities Peace River Electric Cooperative, Inc. Pittsburgh Pirates PNC Wealth Management Carla Rayman and Patricia Tan – Coldwell Banker Real Estate Schroeder-Manatee Ranch E. Rhoda Shaten Charitable Foundation Vanguard Advanced Pharmacy Systems Walgreens Pharmacy

LECOM Scholarship supporter passes

William Scott Correira, a local artist who displayed his talents at the 2011 and 2012 LECOM Student Scholarship Fund Auction Galas, died at age 43 of brain cancer on Nov. 27. Just a month earlier, Correira was on hand with his paints and canvas in the atrium of the Hyatt Regency Sarasota, where LECOM hosts its annual event. After completing his work of art, Correira donated the pieces to the LECOM auction. His art work raised nearly $2,000 for LECOM’s student scholarship fund. His paintings were purchased by LECOM’s President and CEO John M. Ferretti, DO. The owner of the BC Woo Gallery in St. Petersburg, Fla., Correira specialized in marine life paintings. In 2007, Correira suffered a seizure and fell into a coma for 48 days. Doctors discovered that Correira had brain cancer and they removed part of his brain in an effort to stop the spread of the disease. Correira was unsure he would ever paint again, but he continued to do what he loved. Correira is survived by his mother, Gale Correira and sister, Carrie McCreedy. Donations can be made in his name to the to H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, 12902 USF Magnolia Drive, Tampa, FL 33612.

A PHYSICIAN is not just a doctor. We are problem-solvers, caretakers, and leaders. We see our patients as people, not just notes on a chart. Osteopathic medicine is more than diagnosis and medication – it is treating the whole person not just symptoms or disease. We harness the body’s healing power as another medical tool for maintaining good health. We believe that when Mind, Body and Spirit come together, the impossible becomes possible, making bodies stronger, families healthier, and communities more prepared for the challenges of the future.

...My calling was to become a physician. I went to LECOM.


THE CALLING? | winter 2013 | lecom connection 19

Prolific Publishing Year for LECOM Accelerated Physician Assistant Pathway Student his dermatology-related cancer focused articles being published in peer-reviewed medical journals. Wolfe studied and reported on the affect of electron beam radiation on malignancies; possible chemopreventive therapies in Gorlin syndrome; heat-induced carcinoma; stereo-orientation in Mohs surgery; and chondrodermatitis nodularis helicis, a disease that often presents as a solitary nodule on the rim of the ear in middle-aged or older men. Rounding out Wolfe’s publications, he offered a report on nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome. The extensive and comprehensive work of this sedulous researcher is a tribute to his unflagging and unremitting investigations and studies. This sage Seton Hill scholar has had a remarkable year submitting research articles to journals – all of which have been well-received and receptively noted. The battle against the unremitting scourge of cancer is one that forms a basis of Wolfe’s passion. No mission could be more requiring of ceaseless determination and tireless commitment; both qualities that abound in Wolfe.

Christopher Wolfe (OMS1) LECOM at Seton Hill

Student research is growing! The number of LECOM students submitting “Research Day” abstracts is increasing; and LECOM is making an indelible mark in the forefront of national research. For LECOM at Seton Hill scholar, Christopher Wolfe, 2012 proved to be a red-letter year. The Accelerated Physician Assistant Pathway (APAP) student published nine articles last year and he has co-authored four chapters in an upcoming book, soon to be released by Springer Publishing, entitled “Radiation Treatment in Dermatology”. Assistant Dean of Graduate Studies and APAP director Mark Kauffman, DO and Assistant Dean of Research Bertalan Dudas, MD, PhD could not be more proud of their student. Christopher Wolfe is a Physician Assistant initially trained through the military. After his military service, Wolfe worked in Mohs surgery, a dermatology specialty that deals with the treatment of skin cancer. Wolfe assisted with post-Mohs reconstructions and skin cancer management alongside Mohs surgeons. The resultant experience facilitated 20 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

He credits his accomplishments to being challenged by others who he believes are visionaries. Wolfe commented, “When you are surrounded by such people – as the saying goes – ‘more is caught than taught’.” He exhibited immense gratitude for LECOM’s contribution to his development as a health care provider. While Christopher Wolfe’s offerings to medicine are respected and valuable; so too are his selfless offerings of service to his country. Wolfe volunteered to deploy to Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom, serving as an Army Physician Assistant prior to his work in dermatology. In that capacity, he functioned as the sole healthcare provider for an Infantry Battalion comprising approximately 800 personnel; with his medical team providing care for approximately 3,000 soldiers in his Brigade. This patriotscholar delivered medical care in support of the troops both during peacetime and combat situations throughout his Iraq deployment and for other Army operations. Christopher Wolfe is a distinguished Honor Graduate of the 101st Airborne Air Assault School, an expert field medic and marksman, yet his rough-and-ready medals belie the effusive soul of this caring physician – both scholar and patriot – and one whom LECOM recognizes as an undisputed tribute to his calling.

Someone Else’s Story – Osteopathic Principles Guided LECOM Staff Member to Joyful Outcome The writing of this piece presents an atypical situation for me as most of the articles and pieces that I pen for the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine stem from the events and circumstances of others. In my capacity as Chief Writer and Editor of the LECOM Connection, I serve merely as the conduit through which those events and circumstances are distilled into the written form and are shared with you, the reader. This piece is a deviation from the norm since it is, well – about me. More than simply being “about me” however, it focuses upon a situation that could happen to anyone – in fact, it could be someone else’s story. It is for that reason that I decided to take this opportunity to share my personal story with you – in the hope that this account may raise awareness to the snares and pitfalls of medical tunnelvision. About a week ago, I underwent my annual mammogram at a facility near my home in Venice, Florida. There was nothing unusual about the process and I completed the momentary torment with the usual wince-and-walk attitude. The next day, I was recalled for “magnifications” as I was told that the radiologist wished to have a better look at some unclear areas on the films. Accordingly, I returned to the diagnostic center to endure the taking of 14 more slides. At the conclusion of the marathon photo-shoot, I was met by the radiologist who informed me that I was a Bi-RADS 4 and that my films showed micro-calcifications that were of an indeterminate or suspicious nature. He indicated that he was sending my report to a breast surgeon and that she would schedule a stereotactic biopsy of the area in question. A couple of days later, I met with the MD who bluntly informed me that the location of the questionable area would be extremely difficult to biopsy since it was high on the chest and exceedingly close to the pectoralis muscle, making it difficult for the robotic needle to access without puncturing the chest wall. I was further advised - matter-offactly - that if the procedure could not be completed due to the delicate location of the suspicious area, a lumpectomy would be recommended promptly. I attempted to question the surgeon as to the nature of these suspicious microcalcifications and to elucidate further clarity about their origins and my options; yet the MD’s demeanor was rather dismissive and it appeared that to this doctor, my course was set: suspicious finding, biopsy; leading to lumpectomy if the biopsy could not be completed. I departed the surgeon’s office disheartened, confused, and completely in the dark as to my options or to alternatives in course of treatment. At no point did the physician even remotely discuss the possibility that the suspicious finding could be benign or suggest further investigation of areas on the films that appeared indeterminate. The entire process seemed like the nod-through response one feels in

Rebecca A. DeSimone, Esquire Chief Writer/Editor-in-Chief of the LECOM Connection

observing a disengaged factory line-worker – and I was the widget. Enter LECOM! During the ensuing onslaught of angst and anxiety generated by any suggestion of the prospect of cancer, I had the tremendous good sense to contact Dr. Silvia Ferretti who took the time to listen to my personal ordeal and to help me properly assess options. She made it clear to me that it was necessary to evaluate the matter fully, to obtain further review, and – most important – to find a physician that could consider the entirety of the case thoroughly and discuss it with me. She contacted LECOM Bradenton Dean, Dr. Robert George who, in turn, provided to me the name of an osteopathic radiologist in Bradenton. Consequently, I telephoned my newly referred Bradenton osteopathic radiologist, who personally took my call and who assured me that he could re-evaluate the initial slides and findings to discuss them with me. The next morning, I met with the aforementioned DO who - it must be noted - in both style and approach was wholly divergent from that of

See DeSimone, Page 22 | winter 2013 | lecom connection 21

DeSimone from page 21




At the LECOM Medical Fitness and Wellness Center

Exclusive Membership Benefits Include: Three pools: a four lane, 25-yard lap pool; a 2,000sq. ft. exercise pool and a warm-water therapy pool. Executive-style locker rooms: sauna, steam rooms & whirlpools More than 100 weekly group exercise classes offering aquatics, aerobics, cycling, yoga and Pilates. Ongoing support from our health promotion experts Extensive selection of cardiovascular training equipment with individual entertainment system. Comprehensive circuit and free-weight training areas. And much more!


22 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

both the radiologist and the surgeon in Venice. He seemed intent upon my gaining a full understanding of the matter and he invited me into his office to review the slides with him. I was stunned when he immediately informed me that the diagnostic imaging of my initial slides was poor. He explained that had my mammogram been taken using more up-to date mammography equipment, I would have been given a clean report. This DO noted that the so-called “suspicious cluster of micro-calcifications” were actually “macro-calcifications” and therefore – were benign. All in all, at the conclusion of my session with the osteopathic radiologist, I was informed that my report was to be revised and re-issued to the Venice surgeon. I am no longer a Bi –RADS 4 and I have no need for biopsy or lumpectomy or procedures of any kind. Not surprisingly, upon my return home from my DO visit, I was greeted with two calls directly from the Venice surgeon. The tone of both calls was conciliatory and wrought with rambling explanation as to the reason for the earlier diagnosis and for the recommended course or treatment. The MD’s newly conversational demeanor was not at all like that which I had encountered in the examination room. Nonetheless, the inconsequential act of contrition withstanding, it must be noted that the equipment used to perform my mammogram was not sufficient to properly effectuate an accurate diagnosis. In fact, the surgeon noted that the Venice diagnostic center in question is presently reviewing the option to purchase more advanced equipment and the facility is in the process of upgrading to more current diagnostic implements. Of course, this action – is – in and of itself, an admission that the screening apparatus was not sufficient. The doctor assured me that other areas in the nation are using analog diagnostics so - in comparison, Venice’s equipment was quite current. However, this physician’s analogy is tantamount to the reassurance one might receive from an accountant using an abacus; or an Internet provider substituting dial-up, as one would not expect that mammography diagnostics would utilize less than cutting-edge screening detection devices. The surgeon had based a course of treatment directly upon the result of a sub-standard diagnostic report without any further question, and were it not for my association with LECOM and for a subsequent visit to a DO who took the time to perform an exacting review of the information at hand, I would have been subjected to unnecessary procedures and unwarranted stress and disquietude. I am indescribably grateful to LECOM for providing to me the superior guidance that ultimately spared me from a wholly unpleasant experience. I am however, equally indescribably incensed that others may be unwittingly traveling a very similar path that will likely result in unnecessary procedures, not out of a physician’s caution based upon a viable medical finding, rather upon a physician’s rubber-stamping of a finding based upon outdated diagnostic devices. This little ordeal was a learning experience to be sure – and my lesson was, and remains: stick with the principles of osteopathic medicine to ensure superb medical care.

A Gift to match a calling Reflections on faith and medicine By Curtis Read patient by patient, the physician moves from inexperience to comfort, and eventually, to mastery. Every encounter is different – no two patients are alike, and no patient is the same from day to day. With careful observation, and years of experience, a physician can cast an elucidating light on the human body, and begin to understand the human mind and heart. Every day, thousands of physicians walk through thousands of doors; amid the thousands of encounters, perhaps the most important is the encounter with the divine.


We bustled – nine of us in all – into the small hospital room, where a patient was losing her life. White coats and carts, and the urgent toll of the rapid response bell, merged to form a scene that was tumultuous and, ultimately, unsuccessful. With our heads hung low, we placed a blanket over the departed woman, and filed from the room, replaced by three members of her immediate family. The priest was standing outside the door, whispering words of sympathy to a younger man. I exchanged a brief glance with him, and saw a quiet dignity in his eyes – and understood that he and I were the same: we were both healers, one for the body, and one for the soul.


Medicine is an art of encounters. Every day, thousands of physicians walk through thousands of doors, and find a patient waiting on the other side. The encounter is full of questions: the nature of the illness, the effects on the patient’s life. If a physician is astute, the encounter is more than merely gathering information: it is an opportunity for communication. These encounters add up. door by door,

Eventually, every thoughtful physician will walk through a door of their own. It may be after the unexpected passing of a patient; it may be after helping to bring another life into this world. Regardless of the etiology, we will trace a thoughtful path to a quiet office, or a vacant room, or a quiet car, and our own healing encounter will begin – this time, with the physician as the patient, and with the divine presence as the healer. We will do exactly what our patients do: we’ll describe what we’ve observed, and what happened to us, and how it is affecting us, now. Our symptom may be a heavy heart due to loss; it may be the malaise of regret or the paralysis of indecision. Whatever our symptoms, they will make themselves known during these encounters. Again, if the physician is astute, the encounter is more than merely processing information: it is an opportunity for communication with God. And, if we are willing to reflect long enough, we can begin to understand our experience, and to heal.

A Gift to Match a Calling

The gift of faith to medicine is not the miraculous. Oh, miracles occur – and they are noteworthy. Patients have conditions that resolve spontaneously; the extremely fragile survive against

all odds amidst trauma or insidious illness. There are those who answer the command to arise, take up their bed, and walk. These are rare, but they are worthwhile to repeat. But these experiences, while sensational, are rare. More importantly, they are all eventually undone – because everyone is mortal, and even those who are miraculously healed will again become ill, later. None of those miracles lasts forever. Faith offers, though, something better: hope. While miracles are short-lived, hope lasts even longer than our frail bodies. When we lose someone we love, the miraculous healing is no more – but faith offers a more abiding gift: the hope of seeing our loved ones again, and the hope that they are at peace. This hope is more comforting than any degree of physical health, because it is unassailable: death can take our bodies, but illness and the cares of mortality are unable to take our hope for a bright future, and peaceful reunions with those we love.

A Sacred Stewardship

This gift of hope extends to the life of a physician, and makes a professional relationship with a patient something more – something, essentially, sacred. A physician and their patient are not just a trained professional and a paying customer – they are a team designed to combat illness and death, and facilitate living. A demanding process! But when both physician and patient understand the sanctity of life, and undertake to make it both long and fulfilling, they can move forward with purpose and a common goal. In line with that purpose, faith offers the gift of wonder. Our bodies, though fragile, house something even more intricate, and even more resilient: the human soul. When the study of physiology and anatomy is combined with a reverence for its creator, we are

See Read, page 35 | winter 2013 | lecom connection 23

LECOM Students Impress Neighbors at Apartments near LECOM Erie He who allows his day to pass by without practicing generosity and finding life’s purpose is like a blacksmith’s bellows: he breathes but does not live. ~ Proverbs close proximity of the complex to the campus. To meet the plea for more housing and to address the wait-list for open residences, Pastore Builders are adding more apartments.

Laurel Springs Apartments is located across the street from LECOM Erie.

As Dean of Academic Affairs and Provost, Silvia M. Ferretti, DO has much for which to be proud at her beloved LECOM. From medicine to pharmacy to dentistry, the school is a first-rate institution on multiple fronts. Osteopathic principles and cutting-edge education are thriving in three campus locales; and the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine is positioned solidly in the vanguard as the largest medical school in the nation. Yet, there is one aspect among the plethora of notable firsts, pinnacles of achievement, and burgeoning campuses that make this educator’s heart swell with pride. It is the dedication to community service and the fullness of compassion that she observes in the students that cross each of the LECOM campus thresholds. It is no wonder that Dr. Ferretti beamed recently when she received an exuberant and glowing impromptu 24 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

call from a LECOM neighbor. Ella Flick, who lives in the apartments on Grandview Boulevard across the street from LECOM Erie, telephoned the college to voice her delight. She told Dr. Ferretti’s assistant, Beth Burton, that the LECOM students who live near her are very polite, kind, and helpful. Ms. Flick explained that the students make it a point to hold open the doors for her as she enters or exits the building. She elaborated upon circumstances when her vehicle had been snowbound as she gratefully recounted the details of the help afforded her by students to free her car from the drifts. Ms. Flick made special note of the bright and polite demeanor that she has observed from each of the LECOM students whom she encounters. Ms. Flick resides in the Laurel Springs Apartments - owned and operated by Pastore Builders. The units are in high demand by LECOM students due to the

LECOM does not provide student housing and as a result, a market for suitable and affordable housing has been created in Erie. To respond to the needs of LECOM, housing developers have built hundreds of apartments near the campus. Of course, the situation is similar in Bradenton, Florida where Neal Communities and similar Lakewood Ranch Developments have sprung up in response to LECOM’s community presence. The total positive economic impact generated by LECOM in Erie, based upon 2009 data, is $84 million. In Bradenton, the bonus to the economy is $43 million; and even in Greensburg - where LECOM has teamed with Seton Hill, the added boon to the community is more than $6 million. The recognition of student impact upon the community as good neighbors and the economic benefit brought about by their presence in the various localities are certainly dual positives that betoken a gleaming confidence upon all levels. Yet while measuring the community impact in dollars is an unequivocal boon, the heart-swelling pride and the sense of true value comes to the LECOM leadership when they receive calls such as those from Ella Flick.

Excellence in Education Begins as Early as junior high school

Iroquois Elementary School Students (L-R): Colin Baxter, Leo Nicolussi, Julia Cecchetti, Annie Rose, and Morgan Schnars pictured with James Lin, DO

The next generation of health care professionals is starting early, thanks to LECOM. As an ever-innovative and forward looking leader in education, LECOM teamed with James Lin, DO, (LECOM 2002) who specializes in geriatric medicine to help Iroquois Elementary School students design a device that would automatically dispense pills in an accurate, reliable, and safe manner. Dr. Lin explained the common problems that seniors experience in their homes and he discussed with the students various ideas to rectify those difficulties. One of the problems centered upon alerting individuals – especially seniors - to take pills. The discussion further addressed which pills to take, as often medications appear in similar, yet confusing, shapes and sizes. The collaborative devised a robotic automatic pill dispenser that sounds an alarm when it is time to take medications – and, it additionally separates medications automatically! The affectionately named “pillpopping” robot was displayed to LECOM faculty and administrators demonstrating with ease the way in which geriatric patients are prompted to take their medications. The program formed by students in Iroquois Elementary School in Lawrence Park, Pennsylvania formed

the “Electric Dreams: Senior Solutions Team” to design and to build a robot to dispense medicine properly and on time. Entering the FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) Senior Solutions Challenge, students are required to focus upon three areas of solution-oriented objectives: the “Robot Game”, the “Project”, and the “Core Values”. The program involves teamwork, learning and discovery, friendly competition, shared experiences, and professionalism. The “Robot Game” and the “Project” are the action aspects of the experience and the “Core Values” provide the umbrella of principled purpose that runs as a program through-line. The students’

entry in the FLL 2012 Challenge was the triumphant victor of the “Directors Award” at the Lego League Regional Championship at Penn State Behrend. In the competition, student teams designed projects that are intended to improve the quality of life for seniors by helping them to remain independent, engaged, and involved in their communities. LECOM sponsored the “Iroquois Elementary School Electric Dreams Lego Robotics Team” and these future pharmacists, physicians, and dentists visited the LECOM Erie campus to demonstrate the pharmacy robot that qualified them for state championship in Pittsburgh. The students: Julia Cecchetti, Colin Baxter, Leo Nicolussi, Annie Rose, and Morgan Schnars first met with their “Senior Partner”, 75-year-old, Bill Edger, Sr. He explained to them the substantial difficulty that he experiences with aging and noted how hard it is for him to remember to take his medicines. After a visit to the LECOM Institute for Successful Aging, where students met with Dr. Lin, the team began their work in earnest. The next step for the team is to secure a patent on their design. The project is yet another LECOM supported event that evinces its unflagging and steadfast commitment to exceptionalism in education – taking the next generation to the destination of excellence.

The Robot Pharmacist | winter 2013 | lecom connection 25

LECOM Bradenton Medical Student Brings Artistic Joy to New Pediatric Wing at Lakewood Ranch Medical Center The new Pediatric Unit at Lakewood Ranch Medical Center is being met with great acclaim by the community. The state-of-the-art unit includes six family-size suites, a separate playroom for children, televisions equipped with a “Wii”, Internet access in all rooms, sleeping areas for families, mini-fridge comforts as well as private baths and showers. Not surprisingly – the bright and welcoming recently added pediatric floor has a definitive LECOM link: an immense, beautifully painted, custom-designed mural that greets patients as they step into the area. The 22 x 9 foot wall-size fresco was hand-painted by a second-year LECOM medical student, Brian Fiedler. The piece is a lively underwater amalgam of sea-creatures swimming playfully through undulating azures and cerulean waves. Splashes of yellow and foamy green carry the viewers’ eye from a dolphin trio to a stingray and from an array of pink coral to gently gliding and colorful fish. The cheery scene is all the original creation and imaginative brainchild of the talented artist who finds his work both a great release and a joyful expression of his creative side. The intensity of medical study, the rigors of pursuing a medical calling, and the attendant requirements of scholarly training leave few intervals for nurturing the creative arts. Yet, Brian Fiedler took time from the demanding challenges of medical school to offer this artistic gift to the community. “It is part of being a medical practitioner,” explained Fiedler “and it is who we are called to be as physicians”. Fiedler noted that LECOM students are part of the community in which they study and work and they find purpose in “giving something outside of themselves”. Art is just such a gift. Fiedler’s breathtaking rendering offers a captivating scene and onlookers peer at the vibrant seascape with delighted admiration. The atmosphere in a hospital setting is important to bolstering patient attitude and overall morale. Gone are the starkly drab halls and rooms of yesteryear. The attitude now is positive, relaxing, and hopeful – and for many patients to come into the pediatric wing, Brian Fiedler will have done much to encourage that result. The talented artist plans to donate an added piece of his work to the LECOM Student Scholarship Auction Gala in the fall. His commitment to providing “hope through art” was evident when, in college, he volunteered at an organization called “Splashes of Hope” – a group dedicated to transforming, enriching, and advancing healing through art. With that mission, Brian has brought murals and other artistic projects to medical and social service facilities. LECOM is proud to recognize this accomplished scholar-artist in linking his calling to his community and his creative spirit to the positive enrichment of others along his journey. 26 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

Brian Fiedler (OMS2)

A Celebration of Retirement

present has been exemplary.

With a new role as a fulltime grandmother, Susan Lazarro retired at the end of 2012 after a 20-year career as LECOM’s Institutional Director of Student Affairs. Since the earliest days of LECOM, Lazarro has been instrumental in facilitating the College’s phenomenal growth in student admissions and retention. Her adherence to standards of excellence in her interactions with the students of the past and

Lazarro is the embodiment of “firsts,” that is, she was the first staff employee at LECOM when we began our journey in 1992. She was, and continued to be, a student advocate when she started the Student Affairs Department under the direction of (Board of Trustee) Mary Eckert and one other employee as LECOM matriculated its first class with 60 students (which has grown to an enrollment of greater than 3,000 students; and from one building on 7 acres to multiple buildings on over 100 acres on our campuses). She attended the first White Coat Ceremony, the first Commencement and the first Award Ceremony. She assisted in launching the first Branch Campus in Bradenton, the first additional site at Seton Hill, and the first School of Dental Medicine in Bradenton - just to name a few of the numerous inaugural events she helped to establish. During her tenure at LECOM, Lazarro received many honors and was promoted to Institutional Director of Student Affairs. She is a strong woman who, through personal challenges (as a breast cancer survivor), has never faltered and always persevered. Lazarro has decided to retire to be a full-time grandmother, mother and sister, and everyone at LECOM wishes her good health, happiness and good fortune in her new roles.

"Let us not be governed today by what we did yesterday, nor tomorrow by what we do today, for day by day we must show progress." -A.T. Still

Russell Sexton, PhD was an original faculty member at LECOM Bradenton where he served as Professor of Biochemistry, Nutrition and Molecular Genetics. He worked actively as director of mini-courses and as PBL Facilitator. Dr. Sexton served in the same capacity at the LECOM Erie campus before relocating to Florida upon the opening of the Bradenton school in 2004. The incisive and dedicated educator received many awards and honors throughout his career; awards that came in tribute both to his contributions as an educator and to his role as a community servant. The honors include: the Outstanding Teaching and Service Award; the LECOM Mentoring Club Award in recognition for establishing a community reading center; the Erie’s Promise Service Award; the Daniel Carter Beard Masonic Scouter Award in recognition for years of service to scouting; the Black Achievers Service Award for program Leadership; and the Founders Recognition Award from the Academy Success Center in Erie, Pennsylvania to name only a few.

Thomas E. Skoloda, PhD served as Associate Professor of Psychology at LECOM Bradenton. In addition to his enthusiastic service to LECOM, he was instrumental in offering his psychology expertise both to the Memory Center in Sarasota and Bradenton as well as to regional Alzheimer’s associations. Dr. Skoloda expressed deep thanks to LECOM “for the opportunity to contribute to the mission and goals of LECOM”. “When my wife died,” explained the educator, “I was unsure about what I wanted to do with my life, but the opportunity to join LECOM became available. After my interview with LECOM, Dr. Silvia Ferretti said to me ‘these students will be good for you’ – she was right. I have loved working with the students and with the talented faculty at Bradenton,” affirmed Dr. Skoloda. He commented that his colleagues are “exceptional leaders and some of the best administrators that I have ever known”. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 27

Community is Our Campus

LECOM School of Pharmacy Students Kick off Script Your Future Medication Adherence Challenge Throughout the month of February, pharmacy and medical students reached out to the Erie community to promote awareness and understanding of medication adherence. They embarked upon a month-long campaign known as the Script Your Future Student Pharmacist Medication Adherence Challenge. In 2012, LECOM ranked among the top five pharmacy schools in the national challenge. Erie County (Pa.) Executive Barry Grossman presented a proclamation recognizing the important role that student pharmacists play in health care and, most important, the way in which the Script Your Future Challenge will demonstrate the significance of diligently following prescription instructions and completing dosages. In Bradenton, Fla. The Board of Manatee County Commissioners issued a proclamation for the LECOM School of Pharmacy’s Script Your Future initiative. Stay tuned to a future LECOM Connection to learn more about the challenge and the way in which our students helped spread the word about medication adherence.

Pictured L-R: Erie County Executive Barry Grossman, Thomas Roland (P2), Dean Hershey Bell, MD and Associate Dean Rachel Ogden, PharmD.

Pictured L-R: Jenna Jones (P2), Stephanie Hart (P2), Harrison Britt (P2), Associate Dean Sunil Jambhekar, PhD, and Manatee County Commissioner Vanessa Baugh.

LECOM and Millcreek Community Hospital participate in the “LECOM-Cumulis Radio New Year, New You Health Fair” Health care resources from Millcreek Community Hospital, The LECOM Institute for Successful Aging, The LECOM Medical Fitness and Wellness Center, The LECOM Center for Executive Physicals and Lifestyle Assessment and Medical Associates of Erie were showcased at the Millcreek Mall on Saturday, January 12 providing healthy living and information to the Erie community.

Pictured L-R: Christine Lacki (P3), Sarah Wolbert (P2), Cassandra Camp (P2), Julie Smithson (P1), and Andrea Miller (P2)

Bone density tests, free osteoporosis evaluations, demonstrations of Osteopathic Manipulation Techniques, functional movement screens and so much more were offered to the public to help them start the new year with a healthy lifestyle. LECOM students were on hand promoting medication adherence. 28 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

Community is Our Campus

Pictured from L-R are LECOM Erie Pharmacy Students: Santina Scotti (P2), Carina Antypas (P1), Elisabet Schober (P2), Samara Johnsen (P1), Ashley Ramp (P1), and Elizabeth Rosenberger (P2).

LECOM Pharmacy Students Volunteer at Heart Ball The 2013 American Heart Association Erie Heart Ball took place on Saturday, February 23, 2013 at the Ambassador Banquet and Conference Center. LECOM Students are invited annually to help volunteer at the Heart Ball, as well as to serve in various American Heart Association events throughout the year, and to participate in the evening of celebrating the lifesaving work of the American Heart Association.

LECOM Students and Faculty Remember World AIDS Day Students and faculty at the LECOM Erie campus showed their support and helped acknowledge World AIDS Day by forming a human ribbon. This act of unity was an effort to bring awareness to a disease suffered by more than 34 million people worldwide. More than 25 million people have died from AIDS since 1981. Each year, students and faculty show their support by wearing red and by taking time out of their day to remember those millions of people outside the walls of LECOM. The LECOM community and family stand together to support the fight against HIV and AIDS.

LECOM and the Erie BayHawks go on a Shopping Spree. In December 2012, Kristina Braunlich (OMS2), third from the right, joined the Erie BayHawks basketball players, coaches, the BayHawks Dance Team and Clutch (the BayHawks mascot) on a shopping spree benefiting Toys for Tots. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 29

Community is Our Campus

Benjamin Schnee (OMS2), far left and Dhara Patel (P2), far right, met with members of Nolan Middle School’s Health Occupation Students of America Club. HOSA members toured LECOM’s College of Medicine, School of Pharmacy and School of Dental Medicine buildings and met with LECOM students from all three disciplines.

The Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Student Government Association held its annual interdisciplinary competition for medical, pharmacy and dental students. Groups of five students competed to solve a patient case in the most efficient manner possible. By working collaboratively, students were able to learn the importance of interdisciplinary health care. By combining their respective strengths in each discipline, the students progressed rapidly through the patient's diagnosis. Interdisciplinary competition winners from left to right: Mohammed Abdulwahhab (P2), Amberlea Sullivan (P3), Aneesh Sinha (OMS2), Evan Busby (D1) and Cassandra Beck (OMS1).

Winners were:

First Place 1. Aneesh Sinha (OMS2) 2. Cassandra Beck (OMS1) 3. Evan Busby (D1) 4. Amberlea Sullivan (P3) 5. Mohammed Abdulwahhab (P2)

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Second Place 1. Keith Volner (OMS2) 2. Patrick Neilan (OMS1) 3. Phuong Ngyuen (D1) 4. Rizwan Khaliq (P1) 5. Nadeen Jamal (D1)

Third Place 1. Camilo Mohar (OMS2) 2. Nicholas Bottaro (OMS1) 3. Benjamin Petzoldt (P3) 4. Chau Ong (P1) 5. Kayla Macri (D1)

LECOM Trustee leads florida health choices Former Florida state senator and LECOM Board of Trustee member Durell Peaden, Jr., MD, JD has taken a leadership position with Florida Health Choices. As chairman, Dr. Peaden will be involved with the development of a Health Insurance Marketplace for the state. The Marketplace is a central web portal where small business owners with two to fifty eligible employees can choose from a variety of health plans that best meet their needs. Dr. Peaden, a Florida native, became a LECOM board member soon after the Bradenton Campus opened. He served in the Florida Senate from 2001 until 2010. He brings a wealth of medical, legal and political experience to an organization striving to improve health

FACULTY Notes Hershey S. Bell, MD, MS, Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of the LECOM School of Pharmacy was named chairman of the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education advocacy group of inter-professional teaching and collaboration. Dr. Bell also co-authored The Impact of Pharmacy Students’ Remediation Status on NAPLEX First-Time Pass Rates, which was published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. Mark A. Best, MD, Oren D. Rosenthal, PhD, and James D. Leiber, DO coauthored First-Year Medical Student Attitudes on Nutrition Topics Before and After a Nutrition Course at the International Association of Medical Science Educators annual meeting in Portland, OR. Dr. Best also co-authored and presented Implementing and Evaluating the Effectiveness of Fentanyl Transdermal System Patient Education at the 2012 Texas Society of HealthSystem Pharmacists Annual Seminar

care access for Florida citizens. Florida Health Choices was created in response to a vastly changing health care environment to help small business owners in Florida make sense of the complex health insurance system. The Insurance Marketplace provides easy access to affordable, quality health care in a competitive health insurance market. Florida’s Insurance Marketplace is a “one-stop-shop” that provides employers and their employees with flexible insurance options and products. Users can compare multiple insurance products side-by-side; enroll in the one that best meets their needs and access important health information–all in one portal. and Exhibition. Kim Burns, RPh, JD, spoke at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center, Youth Training Day on prescription drug misuse. Dr. Burns also submitted an abstract for a Department of Health meeting later this year on prescription drug misuse collaboration efforts with LECOM and the Erie Department of Health Thomas Corso, PhD, has been named the Director of Student Promotion and Graduation for the School of Pharmacy in Erie.He also-authored Schizophrenia: A Neurodevelopmental Disorder — Integrative Genomic Hypothesis and Therapeutic Implications from a Transgenic Mouse Model., published in Schizophrenia Research Magazine, Research was conducted at the University at Buffalo. Frank Etzler, PhD, Teresa Schweiger, PharmD. and Michael Madden, PhD, co-authored The Impact of Pharmacy Students’ Remediation Status on NAPLEX First-Time Pass Rates, which was published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. Dr. Madden also published a letter to

the editor entitled The Significance of Information in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s The Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy. Deepak Gupta, PhD was named the School of Pharmacy’s Director of the Center for Drug Delivery and Targeting. Richard Hahn, PsyD., has been named LECOM’s Director of Behavioral Health. Dr. Hahn is an Erie native and Pennsylvania licensed psychologist who has been in clinical practice for over 40 years. His previously worked at Saint Vincent Health Center in Erie and has been in a private group practice for the last 23 years. Gregory James, DO, was named 2013 Osteopathic Family Medicine Educator of the Year by the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians (ACOFP). The ACOFP Osteopathic Family Medicine Educator of the Year Award honors those who encourage osteopathic principles when teaching, and who have an extraordinary effect on students, residents and peers. Randy J. Kulesza Jr., PhD, Associate Professor of Anatomy and Assistant Dean of Post Baccalaureate/MS in Biomedical Science Programs, has been appointed as the Foundational Biomedical Sciences Division Chair of Anatomy for the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME).   The NBOME also named Dr. Kulesza as the 2012 NBOME Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensure Examination of the United States (COMLEX-USA) Level 1 Item Writer of the Year.  Patrick Leary, DO, LECOM’s Director of Sports Medicine, co-presented an American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine webinar: The Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury in Athletes. Donald G. Linville, PhD, was nominated and accepted as a division board member of the Westmoreland County (Pa.) Division of the American Heart Association. | winter 2013 | lecom connection 31

Ali Moradi, MD, was selected to serve as an Assessor for Continuing Education Credit Evaluation with the American Public Health Association (APHA) Learning Institute during its annual meeting and exposition in San Francisco. Abbey Powers, PharmD, gave a presentation on the Pharmacokinetics of Antipsychotics to the Millcreek Community Hospital Psychiatric Residents. Mary Ray, PharmD, was a judge for the Know Pain Know Gain Counseling Competition at the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association’s mid-year conference in Harrisburg, Pa. Kathryn Samai, PharmD, was elected as President of the Sarasota Regional Society of Health-Systems Pharmacists for 2013. Bojana Stevich, PharmD, lectured on drug shortages at the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association’s mid-year conference in Harrisburg, Pa.




2013 32 lecom connection | winter 2013 |

Mark Terrell, EdD and Brian Risavi DO (MS MedEd candidate), authored Teaching Mass Casualty Triage Training: Moulage Training vs. Written Scenarios, in the Journal of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Terrell with Sean Larner, DO, LECOM 2012, Brian McQuone DO, LECOM 2011, and Justine Schober, MD, authored Perceptions of the Living Dead: An investigation into knowledge and opinions about whole body donation for the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. Chandan Thomas, PhD, was named the Director of Student Promotion and Graduation at the School of Pharmacy’ in Bradenton. Ryan Wargo, PharmD. was elected as secretary of the Sarasota Regional Society of Health-Systems Pharmacists for 2013. Rebecca Miller Wise, PharmD, has been named the Director of Admissions for the LECOM School of Pharmacy. She recently moderated a presentation on Acetaminophen: Why all the Changes? at the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association’s mid-year conference. Dr. Wise is also chairwoman of the Education Committee for the Board of Directors at Boro Women’s Services in Edinboro, Pa.

April 10 Osteopathic Medicine Hospital Day, Seton Hill April 14-20 National Osteopathic Medicine Week April 24-27 AACOM & AODME Conference, Baltimore, MD April 11 Osteopathic Medicine Hospital Day, Erie May 1-4 POMA's 105th Annual Clinical Assembly at the Valley Forge Hotels & Convention Complex in King of Prussia, PA. May 2 LECOM Alumni Dinner, Deuces Wild, Valley Forge Convention Center. RSVP: June 2 LECOM Erie and Seton Hill Commencement June 9 LECOM Bradenton Commencement June 13-14 Florida National Dental Conference June 14 LECOM Erie On Campus Day

STUDENT Notes Class of 2015

William Bianchi, Sarah Wiegand, Laura Jordan, Michael Van Tiem, Brandi Manning, Dru Herring, Zachary Griggs, Meghan Cooper and Capritta Roberts (Bradenton Medicine) presented posters on Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy as a treatment for medical student fatigue, depression and stress at the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association year-end conference and at the American College of Physicians conference. Beth Koh (Seton Hill-Medicine) was selected for an environmental fellowship with the Albert Schweitzer Fellows Program. Koh worked to improve the overall health and academic achievement levels of special education students at Pressley Ridge Day School in Greensburg, Pa. Her project involved nutrition and exercise that represent the osteopathic philosophy of total well-being of the body, mind, and spirit.  Jimmy DeMeo (Erie-Medicine) spoke at a Capitol Hill news conference in Washington, D.C., to support the Medicare Physician Payment

Innovation Act to repeal the Sustainable Growth Rate formula that discourages physicians from taking Medicare patients.

Class of 2014

Sterling Haring (Bradenton-Medicine) was named Student DO of the Year at LECOM Bradenton. Alyssa Mathew (Seton Hill-Medicine) was named regional coordinator for the Student American Academy of Osteopathy for 2012-13. Gale Garmong (Erie-Pharmacy) won the Pain counseling competition at the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association’s (PPA) mid-year conference in Harrisburg, Pa. For his victory, Garmong earned $200, an opioid conversion book, and a donation to the PPA PAC in his name.

Class of 2013

Daniel Jacoby (Bradenton-Medicine) submitted the winning clinical abstract Ecchymosis in the Setting of Anemia to the American College of Physicians (ACP) Delaware Chapter. He will also be presenting his abstract at the National ACP meeting in San Francisco.

July 15 School of Dental Medicine, Classes Begin, Class of 2017 July 29 College of Medicine, Classes Begin, Class of 2017 August 12 School of Pharmacy Erie, Classes Begin, Class of 2016 August 19 School of Pharmacy Bradenton, Classes Begin, Class of 2017 September 15-20 Summer Primary Care Conference at Niagara Falls, ON September 21 White Coat Ceremony, College of Medicine, School of Pharmacy, Erie October 12 White Coat Ceremony, College of Medicine, Greensburg

Pamela Brownlee (Seton Hill-Medicine) is completing her final term as the National Convention Coordinator for the Student Osteopathic Surgical Association. John Ekladous (Seton Hill-Medicine) received his certification in Fundamental Critical Care Support (FCCS). Areeba Anam (Erie-Pharmacy) presented the poster Use of Medications in Pregnant and Lactating Women at the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association’s mid-year conference in Harrisburg, Pa Victoria Lippert (Erie-Pharmacy) presented the poster Analysis of the Effect of Antimicrobial Prescribing Patterns on Microbial Sensitivity Patterns in a Small Community Hospital at the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association’s mid-year conference in Harrisburg, Pa Rena Patel (Bradenton-Pharmacy) received a $1,000 scholarship from Wal-mart Pharmacy.




2013 | winter 2013 | lecom connection 33

ALUMNI Notes Class of 1997

Frank Biondolillo, DO was appointed Medical Director of the Emergency Room Departments at Northside Hospital and St. Petersburg General Hospital in St. Petersburg, Fla. He enjoys the opportunity teaching LECOM students and contributing to their community emergency medicine experience. Dr. Biondolillo resides in Sarasota, Fla. with his wife, Marci and his two children Frank II and Giada.

Class of 2000

Elizabeth Swenor, DO has joined Mitchell Park Family Medicine in Petoskey, Mich. She completed her residency in Family Practice at Pinnacle Health Hospitals in Harrisburg, Pa.

Class of 2001

Daniel Kulick, DO has joined Family HealthCare in Brown City, Mich. He completed his internship and residency in family medicine at St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Clinton Township, Mich. and has an additional five years of experience providing family health care services to patients throughout Michigan.

Class of 2005

Danielle Hansen, DO, Associate Director of the LECOM Institute for Successful Aging, was named Vice Chair of the Division of Geriatrics for the American College of Osteopathic Internists. Dr. Hansen lectured recently on “Transitions of Care” at the organization’s national convention. Stephen Heirendt, DO has joined Canonsburg (Pa.) General Hospital as an emergency room physician. He completed his residency at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh. Dr. Heirendt is married and has one daughter.

William F. Wright, DO, MPH released his clinical handbook: Essentials of Clinical Infectious Diseases in February. Dr. Wright is an assistant professor, at the University of Maryland’s School of Medicine Division of Infectious Diseases. His other publications include: Overview of Antiretroviral Therapy for the American Association of HIV Medicine and Fever of Unknown Origin for the textbook Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases by Douglas Mandell.

G. Elliot Cook, PharmD, published a letter to editor of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s The Journal of Managed Care Pharmacy on The Significance of Information.

Class of 2002

Class of 2008

James Lin, DO Director of the LECOM Institute for Successful Aging, was named Chair of the Division of Geriatrics for the American College of Osteopathic Internists.

Class of 2004

Christina Genske, DO and John Tang, DO were married on October 26, 2012. Both are working in Indianapolis, Ind.

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Class of 2007

Sidney Coupet, DO, MPH was published in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association on International Health Electives: Strengthening Graduate Medical Education. Joshua Lynch, DO is director of prehospital care/EMS at Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital in Williamsville, N.Y. He is also a flight physician and medical director with Mercy Flight Western New York. Dr. Lynch completed a three-year residency at the University at Buffalo Department of Emergency Medicine. Lynch lives in Amherst, NY with his wife, Michele, and his daughter.

Class of 2009

Rachel E. Friedman (Dub), DO has joined Allegheny Valley Hospital’s emergency medicine team. Dr. Friedman received her bachelor’s degree in biological sciences and psychology at Carnegie Mellon University. She completed her emergency medicine residency at Allegheny General Hospital. She works with Emergency Medicine Physicians Ltd. Asha Schweitzer, DO has joined the Moscati Health Center in Hastings, Neb. as a family practice physician. Schweitzer earned her bachelor of science from the University of Nebraska and completed her family medicine residency with the Lincoln Family Medicine Program.

Class of 2010

Ivan Rusilko, DO has published The Winemaker’s Dinner: Entrée. This is his second of three romance novels. He previously published The Winemaker’s Dinner: Appetizers in 2012 and his third novel The Winemaker’s Dinner: Desserts comes out spring of 2013. Emily Essert, DO has joined Naples (Fla.) Community Hospital’s family medicine practice group. Dr. Essert completed her family practice residency at St. Petersburg General Hospital.

In Memoriam

Read from page 23 left to marvel, to give thanks, and to protect even more fiercely the human body and its processes. It is more than an organism: it is a temple, and we are its stewards.


I think, often, of the family that filed in, as we filed out, the day I exchanged glances with the priest. I remember their tears – but I also remember their heads held high, and the comforting embraces they shared, the whispers and comforting words. Exchanging places with the family was more than logistics. As we walked out – five physicians, three nurses, and one lost-looking medical student – we traded roles. In that room, I observed a transition: the transition from medical care to the care of faith, and the commending of a soul, from our hands, to the hands of God. We passed a torch, from our hands, to His. May I, and every other aspiring physician, be worthy to hold the torch while it is ours to hold. This essay is dedicated to Caroline Castrignano, Liz Barnhart, and all those who are taken from us by fate. You are restored to us by memories, and by hope; both are sweet. Editors Note: Curtis Read, OMS3, is the winner of the Caroline Castrignano Memorial Student Scholarship Contest. His essay offered examples and inspiration of a faith-filled purpose juxtaposed against the medical calling. Scholarship founder, LECOM’s Chief Writer and Editor, Rebecca A. DeSimone, Esquire, determined the piece to most aptly address the contest’s faith-based theme. Read's message underscored the value of faith in God and the way in which that faith, integrated with medicine, is not only possible, but necessary. He earned $5000 to use toward his education at LECOM.

Pharm.D. Candidate Leaves LECOM but Remains Forever in our Hearts “There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are messengers of overwhelming grief...and of unspeakable love.” ~ Washington Irving Indeed, it is with that love – stronger than death – that LECOM, with great sorrow, announces the passing of Nicholas Aaron Barlow who had been a Pharm.D. candidate in the class of 2013. Nick passed away on January 8, 2013 at the age of 23. Cancer took the young man from a life and from a calling of purpose. He was an Erie native and a graduate of Cathedral Prep and Gannon University. As a pharmacy student, Nick was a bright, energetic scholar with an outgoing spirit; one who demonstrated a great compassion for the welfare of others. Undeniably, he possessed all of the ingredients to become an outstanding pharmacist. Nick’s effervescent personality was an infectious tonic to all around him. Matt Madurski, Erie SGA President Class of 2013, said that he rarely knew any person more outgoing in the classroom. “He was positive and passionate about people. He was happy and he wished for others to be happy. His loss is a reminder to all of us of just how very precious life is – that we should strive to model Nick’s generosity and enthusiasm in our practice,” affirmed Madurski. Nicholas Aaron Barlow’s spirit was obvious in his every action and LECOM mourns the loss of a great student, a committed friend, and a future pharmacist. Please join us by keeping Nick and his loved ones in your thoughts and prayers as Providence guides his memory in our hearts and minds.

Nicholas Aaron Barlow 1990-2013 | winter 2013 | lecom connection 35

1858 West Grandview Blvd. Erie, Pennsylvania 16509 (814) 866-6641



LECOM Connection Winter 2013