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honors & awards

Jenny Smythe ’90, OD ’93, MS ’00, dean of the Pacific University College of Optometry,was elected the first woman president of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry. She assumed the presidency at the ASCO annual meeting in June. Since graduating as an optometrist in 1993 from Pacific University, she has held many roles within the College of Optometry. In 2010, she became the first woman elected to the ASCO executive committee. The Oregon Optometric Physicians Association named her Optometrist of the Year, also in 2010.

Christine Guenther, professor of mathematics and computer science, was awarded the prestigious Simons Foundation Collaboration Grant for Mathematicians in May. The goal for the $35,000 grant is to support the “mathematical marketplace” by substantially increasing collaborative contacts in the community of mathematicians working in the United States. Guenther plans to pursue three collaborative projects with the grant.

program for middle- and high-school science, technology, engineering and mathematics teachers. That program is embedded in the Woodburn School District, one of the fastest growing, and most diverse, communities in Oregon. pacificu.edu

Hannu Laukkanen ’83, OD ’84, MEd ‘94, professor of optometry,received the 2013 Award for the Advancement of Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation at the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association’s annual conference in April in San Diego. Laukkanen presented a talk at the conference detailing his 2012 sabbatical at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he worked with soldiers displaying vision defects due to traumatic brain injuries. The association focuses on advancing the art and science of rehabilitation for the neurologically challenged patient.

Deepa Rao, assistant professor of pharmacy,was granted a Medical Research Foundation of Oregon New Investigator Award of $40,000, which will support her research project. With these grants, the foundation supports promising new investigators in biomedical research. Principal investigators must be at the beginning of an independent career with a faculty position at an Oregon college or university.

PACIFIC EYECLINICS HELP INFANTS SEE | The Pacific University College of Optometry will host community and campus events Nov. 11 to promote InfantSEE, a public health program that provides free eye care to children under the age of 1. Actor and entertainer Tom Sullivan will bring a motivational

Shilpi Banerjee, director of clinical education for the School of Audiology, was elected to a three-year term on the American Academy of Audiology Board of Directors effective July 1. The American Academy of Audiology is the world’s largest professional organization of audiologists, with an active membership of more than 11,000. Banerjee also was awarded “Honors of the Academy” from the Minnesota Academy of Audiology in February in recognition of her outstanding contributions to the organization.

message of his own experience with blindness. Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber also has proclaimed November as InfantSEE Month in Oregon in support of the program. All Pacific EyeClinics and many alumni are InfantSEE providers. Find a participating optometrist by zip code. infantsee.org


Pacific magazine | Philanthropy Edition, Fall 2013