AHS Magazine 2013-14

Page 1



Lost in Translation

How language barriers limit healthcare for refugees ... and how one OT researcher plans to help

PLUS: The every-other-day diet


meet Brian wismer, ’91

Message From the Dean

You talked. We listened. In the past, creating content for an issue of AHS Magazine began by looking back on our very recent past and looking around at our current endeavors. Either way, we were looking at ourselves. We knew we’d do better to look at our audience—you, our alumni and friends of the college—to try to give you the news and stories you want to read. And we tried to solicit your opinions, but those efforts asked you to write down and snail mail a reply card back to us. We didn’t get far.

AHS MAGAZINE 2013–2014 WRITING AND EDITING Elizabeth Harmon Miller Director of Marketing and Communications Erika Chavez Development Coordinator DESIGN Kimberly Hegarty UIC Office of Publications Services CONTRIBUTING WRITER Gary Wisby, UIC News CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS UIC Photo Services

So for the past two years, we’ve made a concerted effort to collect e-mail addresses, so that we could send you a simple, electronic survey that would give us insight into your thoughts.

©2014 University of Illinois at Chicago. All rights reserved. Published by the Office of the Dean (MC 518), UIC College of Applied Health Sciences, 808 South Wood Street, 169 CMET, Chicago, Illinois 60612-7305.

Last fall, we felt we’d crossed a threshold in terms of the number of people we could contact via e-mail, and we sent out our survey. It was short but ambitious. We asked about your personal connection to the college; what has or would draw you back to visit us; your ideas for how to spend unrestricted donations; and of course, what stories you want to hear from us.

Telephone Fax E-mail Website

You told us you want to hear more about research and fellow alumni, and a little less about past events and current student profiles (their best stories are yet to come). You can see other highlights of the alumni survey on p. 24.

(312) 996-6695 (312) 413-0086 ahsalum@uic.edu www.ahs.uic.edu

Views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editor, the college or university.

In this issue, we’ve tried to oblige you. Read about associate professor of nutrition Krista Varady, whose new book The Every Other Day Diet was among Amazon’s top 10 in the U.S. during its first week of release (p. 11). Also, meet Mansha Mirza, assistant professor of occupational therapy, who is working inside Chicago refugee communities to understand how their healthcare is impeded by language translation, and what can be done to improve it (p. 17).

You might notice abbreviations throughout this issue. They correlate to academic units in the College of Applied Health Sciences.

And don’t miss catching up with alumnus Brian Wismer (p. 14). A 1991 graduate of our physical education program (a precursor to kinesiology), Brian is now a health educator and entertainer who’ll be “edutaining” us at our Faculty and Alumni Awards Dinner on May 3, the pinnacle event of AHS Alumni Weekend 2014.

BVIS Program in Biomedical Visualization

I hope you’ll enjoy the entirety of this issue, and feel that we’ve heard you. For our part, we’ll try continually to deliver the stories that makes you proud to call AHS your alma mater.

HIM Program in Health Information Management

BHIS Department of Biomedical and Health Information Sciences

DHD Department of Disability and Human Development HI


Program in Health Informatics

Major in kinesiology

KN Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition

Bo Fernhall Dean UIC College of Applied Health Sciences


Major in nutrition

OT Department of Occupational Therapy PT

Department of Physical Therapy



FEATURES 11 Fast, Not Furious A diet devised by nutrition researcher Krista Varady is making a lot of people, and their hearts, very happy.

14 One Man, Many Acts Brian Wismer, PE ’91, is an interesting man to know.


17 Lost in Translation OT researcher Mansha Mirza wants to help refugees make a healthy new home in Chicago.



Kinesiology alumna is a freedom-loving woman


Faculty expert in food access weighs in on 2014 farm bill


Your AHS education didn’t have to end at graduation


Mission to Be Accomplished

Thanks to a new endowment, one unforgettable student will be remembered in a whole new way.



Snapshot of results from the 2013 alumni survey


Grant will help stem “cascade of health disparities” People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) are more likely to have poorer health status and more limited access to quality healthcare and health promotion programs compared to the general population. Now, as a long-respected hub of expertise on I/DD, AHS’ Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC) on Developmental Disabilities and Health has received a five-year, nearly $4.4 million grant to address these specific issues. The grant is from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. “The lack of a focus on wellness and preventive medicine has




placed people with I/DD at a greater risk of having their health status negatively impacted by a multitude of factors,” says Tamar Heller, principal investigator and professor of disability and human development. She calls the likely result of this neglect “a cascade of health disparities.” The center aims to improve the health and function of people with I/DD through a coordinated set of research and trainings, as well as through activities that promote the involvement of people with disabilities within the fabric of their communities, helping them to attain healthy, personally meaningful and so-

cially relevant lives. The center also helps individuals access the health and long-term services and supports they need. Among the many initiatives that the center will undertake with the new funding are development of a technology-based, obesity-reduction intervention, and expansion of the successful HealthMatters program, an exercise, nutrition and health-education program developed by the IDHD. For more information, visit www. RRTCDD.org.


Alumna is a “seasoned” volunteer Christine Ranieri, MS NUT ’11, spent a week in August 2013 volunteering at Camp Sunshine, a retreat in Casco, Maine, for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. As an RD and former chef, Ranieri volunteered through a service organization called CulinaryCorps, working with nine fellow vols to teach cooking classes, run “Top Chef” challenges, organize a foodie Olympics and more. “Our role was to provide a wildly fun, creative and magical experience for the families at Camp Sunshine,” she said. “Based on feedback from the campers and the Camp Sunshine staff, we succeeded!”

instructor in AHS’ nutrition program and a research assistant in the lab of Shane Phillips, associate professor of physical therapy. She has given years of service to Deborah’s Place, Chicago’s largest provider of housing services for homeless women. She also hosts “soup nights” in her Chicago apartment, gathering friends to share a meal together and inviting them to show appreciation by contributing to a group donation to a selected charity. “Some people have money and some people have time and some people have talent,” she says. “I feel really fortunate that I have just enough of those things to share with others.”

Volunteer service is nothing new for Ranieri, who is now an


Christine Ranieri helps a Camp Sunshine camper stretch dough for her own woodfired pizza.


am thankful for the more than 300,000 physical and occupational therapists in the U.S. If it weren’t for my own ‘PTs and OTs,’ there is no way I could have returned to the U.S. Senate… . Having a stroke shouldn’t mean the end of a productive life. Physical and occupational therapists make a major difference in countless Americans’ lives, including the life of this U.S. Senator.”

̶ –Sen. Mark Kirk, responding to TIME when asked what he was most thankful for at Thanksgiving 2013. Sen. Kirk returned to work in January 2013 following a massive stroke and a year of therapy, much of which was led by T. George Hornby, associate professor of physical therapy.






At home with the Netters Most AHS alumni know the name of Frank Netter, the prolific medical artist who compiled the groundbreaking Atlas of Human Anatomy. But some alumni know him much better now, having attended our Oct. 25, 2013, lecture and book signing by Francine Netter.

Guest Dori Hosek, BVIS ’82 (left), was delighted to win the raffle’s grand prize: A print of an early Frank Netter painting, donated by Francine Netter (right).

playing in her father’s studio and trying to keep his doodles off her homework.

The artist’s daughter-biographer provided a preview of her book, Medicine’s Michelangelo: The Life & Art of Frank H. Netter, by regaling a packed room of alumni and students with tales of

After signing copies of her book, Netter joined alumni of our biomedical visualization program for dinner at the National Museum of Health + Medicine Chicago. NMHM Chicago president and BVIS alumnus Mike Doyle, ’83, gave tours to all and arranged for current students’ artwork to be displayed on the museum’s dozens of exhibit screens.


Donors further Kielhofner’s work The death of professor Gary Kielhofner left a void in the college and especially in the Department of Occupational Therapy, which he led for 20 years and where he held the Wade/Meyer Endowed Chair. Now, the OT department is pleased to announce that one memorial to his life and work, the Gary Kielhofner Model of Human Occupation Fund, has met the endowment-level status of $25,000. Thanks to the generosity of alumni, faculty and friends, the department will be able to distribute the first award




during the 2014-2015 academic year. The recipient will be a student, clinician or faculty member who is working to further develop and apply Kielhofner’s groundbreaking practice model known as the Model of Human Occupation (MOHO). This endowment is a testimony to the legacy Kielhofner left, not only at UIC, but to the global field of occupational therapy. Learn more about Gary Kielhofner’s MOHO at www. cade.uic.edu/moho.

Gary Kielhofner passed away in 2010 but left an immortal legacy.


Award from all, to all The college was happy to distribute five, $1,000 awards this year from the AHS Scholarship Fund. As the name indicates, this scholarship program is the only one in the college that is financed by donor-alumni from all AHS academic departments and whose awards are available to students in any AHS degree program. It is a wonderful embodiment of the college’s multidisciplinary nature and its aspirations for big-picture impact.

academics and to volunteerism at UIC and within their communities. This year, the five students were Mariya Denisenko, BS, kinesiology; Seena Mathew, BS, kinesiology; Hang Nguyen, doctor of physical therapy; Alejandra Villanueva, MS, occupational therapy; and Sarah Yankey Frempong, BS, health information management. To contribute to this truly multidisciplinary fund, please visit www.ahs.uic.edu/support.

Accordingly, students selected to receive the award demonstrate deep commitment to

AHS Scholarship Fund award recipient Sarah Yankey Frempong


Free rider Alumna Michelle Miller is one freedom-loving woman. One of 10, to be specific.

ergy that runs through me that I wish everyone could experience.”

That’s according to Harley-Davidson, which named Miller, who earned a BS in kinesiology in 2013, one of 10 American women who are “unleashing their inner rebel and inspiring other women to do the same.” Harley’s contest to collect stories of women riders drew countless entries, but the Lincolnshire, Ill. resident stood out.

Now in graduate school for nursing at Chicago’s Rush University, Miller says her interest in kinesiology came from both her passion for exercise and, indirectly, from her father: “My dad is a total gear head. He spent a lot of time working on cars, and his knowledge about the ins and outs of how an engine works is something I’ve always admired. That definitely geared my interest in learning how things work—like the human body.”

“The feeling that I get when I kick start the bike, release the clutch as I slowly roll on the throttle …,” Miller wrote in her entry. “It is a distinct type of en-







Four days with Robin Jones Robin Jones is director of the Great Lakes ADA Center in the college’s Institute on Disability and Human Development. She’s also an instructor in the DHD master’s degree program and a tireless advocate for disability equality. Apr. 18, 2013: Members of NARRTC (the National Association of Rehabilitation Research and Training Centers) elect Jones to be their next president, a post she’ll assume for two years beginning May 2014. July 16, 2013: As co-chair of Gov. Pat Quinn’s Employment and Economic Opportunity for Persons with Disabilities Task Force, Jones speaks at the bill-signing ceremony for Illinois’ “Employment First Act,” which requires state agencies to make jobs for people with disabilities a priority. Aug. 23, 2013: At a dinner in Washington, D.C., Jones represents the Great Lakes ADA Center

Robin Jones (center in green) speaking at the billsigning ceremony for Illinois’ “Employment First Act.”

in accepting the Kennedy Center’s “Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability Award for Excellence in Accessibility Leadership.” It acknowledges the GLADAC’s impact on access to the arts for all people. Jan. 27, 2014: Jones facilitates the public discussion, “The ADA & Cultural Spaces,” as a steering committee member for the new Chicago Cultural Accessibility Consortium. The CCAC was founded to work with the city’s cultural-arts community and venues on issues of inclusion and access for people with disabilities.


Report to the Rep Tanvi Bhatt (pictured, second from left), assistant professor of physical therapy, explained her research to U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam, R-Ill., when he toured three physical therapy labs and the college’s Integrative Physiology Lab on Aug. 22, 2013. Bhatt examines into how stroke survivors recover balance when they experience perturbation while walking. Roskam’s visit was arranged by PT alumna Julie Schwert6



feger, ’94, an active advocate for increased National Institutes of Health funding for physical therapy research. At the end of the tour, Roskam said he believes in supporting mission-critical work while continuing to look for ways to do things faster, better and less expensively under fiscal constraints. Rep. Peter Roskam (far right) visited AHS research labs in August.


AHS’ers compete to give back In fall 2013, the AHS development office conducted its first, to-be-annual fundraising campaign among faculty and staff. To make it interesting, Dean Bo Fernhall issued a challenge: The academic department with the highest rate of participation among faculty and staff would win a bonus $500 donation from the dean’s discretionary funds.

When the spirited campaign closed on Nov. 19, 2013, faculty and staff had supported various AHS funds with donations totaling $13,687 (including gifts made at any time in 2013). And the winner of the dean’s challenge? The Department of Occupational Therapy, which enjoyed 92 percent participation! The OT department will put the

$500 bonus toward its Doctoral Student Dissertation/Project Award fund. Honorable mention in the campaign went to the Department of Disability and Human Development, which raised 31 percent of the total dollars.

“In the end, it was a good old-fashioned barn raising,” said AHS Dean Bo Fernhall about the spirit in which faculty and staff came together to help better their shared community.



[supports] the most vulnerable populations in the U.S. We need to make sure that these programs are there when we need them. There are many families that, 10 years ago, thought they wouldn’t need this benefit, and that now are in need of this benefit.” –Angela Odoms-Young, assistant professor of nutrition, on the importance of the food stamps program, which suffered cuts in the 2014 federal farm bill. OdomsYoung, a researcher on issues of food access and food security, is currently helping to implement a statewide program called “WIC to 5.” The Women, Infants and Children Program provides food, education and medical referrals for mothers and children younger than 5. “WIC to 5” aims to retain people in the program for the duration of their eligibility. Get more of Odoms-Young’s thoughts on this topic in an article and podcast at go.uic.edu/AOY_SNAP.






Alumna leaves legacy and more Regular readers of AHS Magazine may recall reading in the last issue about the unexpected passing of the college’s 2007 Distinguished Alumna, Geraldine “Gerri” Smothers, BS HIM ’82. The story did not include the news that would be revealed weeks later: Smothers had left a last gift to the college. In an act that will surprise no one who knew the highly organized, always generous and terrifically loyal alumna, Smothers

On Feb. 13, 2014, Garrick (left) and Micah Smothers, along with some 40 other family, friends and admirers, celebrated their mother’s life and gift in the classroom she furnished.

named the college as the beneficiary of a life insurance policy. AHS Dean Bo Fernhall promptly earmarked the gift for use by the health information management program. The timing was perfect. “The college paid to renovate a classroom for our department, but it was up to us to pay for furnishings,” says Karen Patena, clinical professor of HIM. “Gerri’s gift was the perfect link between our needs and her legacy as a

mentor and teacher. I know she’d cheer the use of her gift to build an environment where future HIM professionals prepare for their careers.” Smothers’ gift enabled the purchase of modular furniture and leading-edge teaching technology. And the finishing touch? Plaques inside and outside the room to commemorate Smothers’ spirit and generosity.

Lead teacher


John Daugherty, clinical assistant professor and director of AHS’ Program in Biomedical Visualization, received the 2013 Brödel Award for Excellence in Education from the Association of Medical Illustrators. The award, presented July 19, 2013, during AMI’s annual meeting, recognizes Daugherty’s 25 years of educating and mentoring new medical illustration professionals.





Professor truly applies his health Kinesiology professor Tim Koh practices what he preaches. The teacher of a course called “Biomechanics: Introduction to the Human Machine” is a veritable machine himself, which he’ll prove in May 2014 when he and three friends run the full expanse of Utah’s Zion National Park. They’ll tackle the roughly 48 miles, with 10,000 feet of elevation gain, in a single day. And this isn’t a first for him. Koh and three companions—brother Jeff Koh and friends Jihn Han and Tom McLaughlin (pictured above)—ran the Grand Canyon, rim to rim and back, in May 2012. “These runs are a great adventure,” says Koh. “There’s a real sense of ‘I think we can do this, but I’m not sure, so let’s find out.’ And to do it all with good friends! What else can you ask for?”

Koh (second from left) and his companions pose for a snapshot some 24 miles and 7.5 hours into their run around the Grand Canyon.

For this run, the group has added a charitable component, raising money to support a U.S.based institute that builds schools, primarily for girls, in remote villages in the mountains of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Tajikistan. “All four of us are university professors and/ or physicians, so teaching is a big part of all of our jobs,” says Koh. “The mission to educate girls who will go on to educate their community about health and other important issues speaks loudly to us.”

Did someone call for a bachelor?

Jeffrey Zaman graduated in May ’13 with a BS in health information management, but not before he contributed to research and prepared a paper about the potentially devastating costs


to pediatric medical practices of making the federally mandated transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 by Oct. 1, 2014. The ICD is a complex system of classification codes by which medical practices live and die; the codes are the primary vocabulary of everything from supply orders to insurance reimbursements.

“I was a nervous wreck,” Zaman confessed after the event. “But the minute I walked up to the podium, my tension started to go away. Afterward, some of the pediatricians came up to me to compliment my presentation. One woman asked for my contact information and wanted more details on my research.”

Zaman’s paper was accepted for presentation at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference on Oct. 27, 2013. At age 23, he was the only non-MD on the panel.

Zaman, now a coding specialist at Northwestern Medical Group, says he hopes the work he’s done will prevent providers from losing hard-earned revenues and patients from suffering unnecessary claim denials. 2013–2014




Continue your education at AHS


AHS frequently hosts open lectures addressing today’s foremost health concerns. Many offer continuing education credit as well. Here are a few recent examples: October 4, 2013 “Demographics of aging and implications for cardiovascular management” Presented by Dan Forman, MD Director, Exercise Testing Laboratory, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston

November 21, 2013 “Preventing Disability in America” Presented by Alan Jette, PhD Director, Health and Disabilities Research Institute, Boston University

Supported by Accelerated Rehabilitation Centers, whose CEO is alumnus Eric Warner, BS PT ’88

The 2013 Rifkin Seminar, endowed by the family and the former NPO of Vivette R. Rifkin

February 7, 2014 “Can Older Latinos Dance Their Way to Better Health?” Presented by David Marquez, PhD Assistant professor of kinesiology, AHS

February 27, 2014 “Exercise Is Medicine” Presented by Barry Franklin, PhD Director of preventive cardiology and cardiac rehabilitation, William Beaumont Hospital, Detroit

Keep an eye on www.ahs.uic.edu for an ongoing list of coming events! And visit us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/UIC.AHS to see images of our outstanding lecture events.

Fall guy for use in PT offices to prevent falls in older adults, the leading cause of injury in adults older than 64. Pai has spent 20 years studying how people fall, primarily using adult research subjects who were intentionally made to slip while walking on a treated surface, strapped into a safety harness, in his lab.

Clive Pai, professor of physical therapy, will use a five-year, $1 million grant from the National Institute of Aging to develop a computerized treadmill program 10



“For the first time, the second time, and maybe the third time, they experienced falling. And then, all of sudden, they stopped falling,” Pai said. “They were so quick to adapt.”


Pai also discovered that his subjects retained what they had learned for as long as 12 months, and were 50 percent less likely to fall during daily activities in the year after training than in the year before. Since his lab set-up is too bulky for the typical PT office, Pai has developed a computer-controlled treadmill program that simulates the lab training. The new NIH grant will allow him to see if the treadmill training can be as effective, and maybe lead to a day when preventive care for older adults can include safe training to learn how not to fall.


Furious Nutrition researcher Krista Varady has developed a diet that lets people lose weight and improve their cardiovascular health without feeling crabby all the time

ere’s a good way to lose weight: Fast. Fast, the verb, as in: to eat very little. It’s a diet known as alternate-day fasting, and Krista Varady, associate professor of nutrition, is the expert. Varady studies dietary interventions that can help overweight and obese individuals lose weight and lower cardiovascular risk.

Her work departs from the most common weight loss regimens, which restrict calories every day to about 25 percent less than daily needs. That’s a method that leaves most people feeling deprived and likely to give up fairly quickly, says Varady. “That works for a little while,” she says. “The problem is that you probably can’t stick to it more than two months. You’re hungry and uncomfortable throughout the day.”

With alternate-day fasting, dieters have a diet day followed by a feast day. On the diet day, they consume one meal: a good-sized lunch of 400 to 500 calories for women and 500 to 600 calories for men. “On the feast day, you eat whatever you want,” Varady says. “It’s a day in between where you can feel totally normal.”




The research

lowered 10 to 25 percent. Blood pressure and heart rate may drop 10 percent.

In 2006, Varady was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of California, Berkeley who had no interest in weight loss. She was working with mice to research whether fasting could minimize cancer risk.

Another study looked at two alternate-day fasting groups, one satisfying 45 percent of their energy needs with fat, the other 25 percent. The results were surprising.

“I was trying to tease apart the effects of fasting versus weight loss,” she says. “Since I wanted mice to fast without losing weight, I fed them normally every other day, but no matter what I did, they kept losing weight.”

“After eight weeks, the high-fat group lost 17 pounds, the low-fat group 12 to 13,” Varady said. “The high-fat group cheated less because they were happier with what they had to eat.”

weight. And we’re also comparing those results to [diets that employ] daily calorie restriction. Turns out the results from each diet are almost the same.”

What’s happening? When Varady introduces new people to the concept of alternate-day fasting, sooner or later she gets asked why it works. It’s a question even she had at the outset of her human trials. She assumed that, with their intake cut to 25 percent of daily energy needs on a diet day, dieters would binge and eat close to 175 percent the next day. “But something is happening in the body which doesn’t allow people to overeat on that day,” she reports. In fact, they eat only about 110 percent of their energy needs on the feast day.

Some think Varady’s diet sounds too good to be true, but her work is the result of eight years of scientific research, including studies supported by the National Institutes of Health, the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association.

Her first reaction, she reports, was anxiety, feeling her whole research project was a failure. But then she realized she might have stumbled upon a useful solution to a very common challenge. She became determined to embark on human trials looking at weight-related health. Since then, she’s done or is doing seven studies of alternate-day fasting, and she has published more than 25 research papers on the diet since joining AHS in 2008. Her research shows that alternate-day fasting can help dieters shed 10 to 30 pounds in about eight weeks. Moreover, her studies show that the alternate-day fast reduces blood pressure, cholesterol levels, blood sugar, insulin and inflammatory factors (all signs of cardiovascular risk) more than calorie-restriction diets. One study showed that after eight weeks, LDL cholesterol (the “bad” kind) can be




Yet another of Varady’s studies combined alternate-day fasting with exercise and found a further decrease in LDL cholesterol levels. “You can exercise on your fast day, but it’s better to do it in the morning,” Varady says. “You get a hunger surge 30 minutes after exercise, and if people exercise in the afternoon they’re going to cheat.” Her current research, supported by a $1.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, examines the ability to stay on the diet and maintain weight loss for a longer term. Subjects adhere to Varady’s standard alternate-day fasting plan for the first six months, then switch to a higher-calorie regimen—with only three, 1,000-calorie fast days each week—for the next six months. The results of that study will be complete in about a year, but so far, “It’s looking really promising,” Varady reports. “People are able to stay on it long term and they’re losing

Ever the conscientious researcher, Varady can’t explain the hunger-suppressing effect that she’s observed without specifically studying it. One possibility she cites is that people are becoming more attuned to their fullness cues, and she’s also studying whether shifting hunger hormones are at play. She speculates that the primary reason for dieters’ moderation is that their stomachs shrink over time as a result of the diet days, making it physically impossible to gorge every other day. However, measuring stomach capacity is highly invasive, making it difficult to study. Regardless, the real reason it works is that it’s easy to stick to, compared to diets that leave a person feeling deprived every day. Even though many people’s immediate response to the idea of restricting themselves to 500 calories every other day is, “Oh I could never do that,” the ones who try the diet usually find it pretty agreeable. Varady only loses about 15 percent of participants in each study. “We’ve found that people adjust to the diet after about two weeks, or about five of those diet days,” says Varady. “Your body gets used to it, and you always get to look forward to the next day when you can eat whatever you want.”

Want to know more about dieting every other day?


ost Americans know the “facts” about dieting. Diets have to restrict intake every day. Diets require changing your concept about enjoyable foods. Diets mean banishing fatty or sweet treats. Right? Maybe not. In her new book, The Every-Other-Day Diet, associate professor of nutrition Krista Varady proves those facts are really just options.

Varady’s research shows that alternateday fasting is better than calorierestriction diets for lowering risk of cardiovascular disease. Published in December 2013 with co-author Bill Gottlieb, Varady’s book outlines her research-based, alternate-day fasting diet—one in which people eat 25 percent of their daily energy needs on one day, and eat literally whatever they want on the following day. Readers get a clear explanation of how to do the diet; recipes for cooking and tips for eating prepared foods; advice on how to incorporate exercise; and a plan for keeping the weight off.

“People are intrigued by the novelty of this diet,” says Varady. “Most diets are about the nitty-gritty of what you eat, and this is really about meal timing.” If Varady looks familiar, you may have seen her on the national TV program “CBS This Morning” or on Chicago’s daily talk show “Windy City Live.” She also appeared before some 3 million viewers on “BBC Breakfast” in the U.K. Not surprisingly, during its first week in release, The Every-Other-Day Diet was among Amazon’s top 10 books sold in the U.S., and top 30 sold in the U.K. But the book’s success only matters to Varady in that it means she’s communicating to more people her life-altering or even life-saving approach to weight management. “A lot of people tell me they’ve tried ‘everything else’ to lose weight or improve their cardiovascular health,” Varady says. “Alternate-day fasting is a pretty novel approach—a safe, research-supported approach—for those people. It’s not for everyone, but it has worked and is working for a lot of people. Of course I feel pretty great about that.”




One Man, Many Acts Brian Wismer, PE ’91, is a real character. Several of them, as a matter of fact.

ou should get to know this man. When he started at UIC in the late 1980s, his story wasn’t especially uncommon—one of putting himself through school while working and taking care of family. Before he finished his degree, though, his story would take a turn unlike any other you’re likely to hear. And it keeps getting better.

“At first, I got pounded around a lot, but it was a huge turning point in my life,” he says. “It’s amazing what a difference athletics made. I learned how to use what I had physically. I could have gone any which way in high school, but I fell in love with sports.”

For his next act, he’ll provide entertainment at the May 3 Alumni and Faculty Awards Dinner during AHS Alumni Weekend 2014.

He was named team captain as a sophomore and led the team until he graduated.

Meet Brian Wismer …

Brian the original Finn Hudson

Brian the football team captain

Besides playing football, Brian also found his inner entertainer at Amundsen H.S. He was a regular in school variety shows and formed a small singing group that performed at school events and during halftime at the basketball games. Before long he founded the school’s men’s chorus. Not every high school football captain would feel comfortable showcasing his artistic side.

Brian with the high school football coach who gave him a chance to find his niche.


’bout I come out for the team?” The coach answered yes, seriously, and Brian needed a good grade in science.

Brian Wismer was born and raised on Chicago’s far north side. The seed of the person he is today was planted early in his career at Amundsen High School in the Ravenswood neighborhood. Recalling his freshman year, Brian describes himself as “pretty shy, skinny, uncoordinated, not athletic, with hair down to my shoulder blades” But that didn’t stop him from jokingly asking the school’s football coach, who was also his science teacher, “How



In variety shows during high school and college, Brian’s skits were influenced by the zaniness of Monty Python.

“I was getting some confidence, coming out of my shell, recruiting other people,” he says. “That was definitely the time where sports and entertainment started being a big thing for me.”

Brian the UIC student, Part I In December of Brian’s senior year of high school, his father was diagnosed with cancer. He survived to see Brian graduate, but passed away that August.

“I loved the physicality of clowning. I did a lot of dancing, the splits, spins. It was very, very physical.” So when Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus came to Chicago in 1988 to hold auditions for its Clown College, Brian couldn’t resist signing up, “just to see how I fared compared to other clowns in the city,” he says. From some 2,500 performers nationwide who auditioned for Clown College that year, Brian was one of the 50 chosen for admittance. He put his UIC education on hold to attend the 10½week session in Venice, Florida.

“So I didn’t go to college right away. I took a job. A lot of jobs, actually,” he reports. He wasn’t making a living so much as piecing one together. After a year off, he enrolled at Wilbur Wright College and started thinking seriously about what he might want to do for a living. He took classes in theater, but didn’t really want to be a traditional actor, memorizing scripts and playing serious roles. And he still loved sports.

“They were only going to pick about 10 of the 50 to actually join the traveling circus, and when I started, I didn’t want to be picked. I just wanted to learn,” Brian recalls, “but by the end of the session, I was like, ‘Heck yes, I want to join the circus!’”

“I knew I couldn’t play professionally, but I was interested in the physicality of sports, the way the body works,” he recalls. “That’s around the time I learned about physical therapy and athletic training.” He decided he wanted to go to UIC. While he admits he didn’t have the hard-science grades for the intensely competitive PT program, he was undeterred, eventually setting a course to earn a threepart degree: a major in physical education with concentrations in athletic training and kinesiotherapy. (None of these programs are still offered in the college, but they are vital forerunners of today’s kinesiology programs.) That time in his life wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t an unfamiliar UIC story either. “My younger brother and I lived with my dad after my parents’ divorce [when Brian was 12]. When my dad passed, my brother was 15, so I was kind of his guardian for a few years. I had to make sure the apartment was taken care of, that he got through school. And at the same time, I was working and taking all the classes for athletic training and for P.E., and doing the hours for kinesiotherapy. I was in school on and off, part-time, full-time. But we got through it.”

Brian the clown The first thing Brian says on this topic is, “I really wasn’t interested in clowning.” This will become hard to imagine. Before he’d even graduated high school, Brian was recruited by a friend to help in a clown act for a local community event. He had a lot of fun, but the last part of the act flopped, and he hated ending on such a bad note. I gotta do just one more show, he thought. One more show eventually led to his co-founding the threeman Chicagoland Clown Team, performing at charitable events or donating their income from paid shows to charity.

Posters advertised Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey in Japan.

At the end of October, he was selected for the reserve team. It meant that, if the circus lost a clown, he would be invited to fill in. As a practical matter, it suited him; he and his fiancé Lauren were planning a December wedding, which would have had to have been postponed if he joined the circus. But at the same time, he was disappointed. “It wasn’t the ‘A’ I wanted,” he remembers. “Now I’m leaving Florida for winter in Chicago. I don’t have a job. I’m not in school. It was a real funky time for me.” On the morning after he returned from his honeymoon, the phone rang. The circus was calling after all. First, he was offered a spot in a two-year show, traveling throughout the U.S. He wanted to say yes, but he was also a happy newlywed. When he declined, he got a counteroffer: the Japanese tour. It would run less than nine months. Most importantly, Lauren, who was then a graphic artist, could come too if she was willing to work on costumes, sets, props and the like. “Next thing you know, we’re both joining the circus!”

Brian the UIC student, Part II When the Japan run ended, the couple was offered spots in the U.S. show. “We just agreed to say no. I wanted to finish college. It was time to go home,” Brian says. They arrived just in time for him to re-enroll at UIC in 1989. He dove back into P.E., athletic training and kinesiotherapy. Used to hard work, he took course loads of 20 hours or more in each of three semesters to finish classes at the end of 1990. After finishing required internship hours, he graduated in May 1991.




Brian the professional

Though he loves entertaining, Brian’s work in athletic training is still very important to him.

Brian realized he could combine his love of entertaining and his commitment to health, fitness and movement. Brian Wismer Entertainment was born.

Brian left UIC to work as a kinesiotherapist at a chiropractic clinic where he’d done an internship, but he didn’t stay away from campus for long. When UIC athletic trainer Carol Humble lost her assistant, she offered the job to Brian. He came on as assistant head trainer, working primarily with UIC’s hockey team (which existed from 1966 to 1996).

He’s almost always make-upfree now—less clowning, more teaching—leading physical games at events like organizational or community picnics and corporate team-building events. “From that background I created the Ultimate Health and Fitness Team Challenge,” Brian explains. “I use a lot wacky relays and such to teach about fitness, balance, posture in a way that’s more fun.”

After a year, he began to feel that old pull of interest in rehabilitation, though he regrets even now leaving Humble without an assistant for the second time in two years. “I felt like I needed to get into the PT clinics to learn more,” he recalls. In 1992 he took a job with Baxter Physical Therapy, which had a contract to provide athletic training for Trinity College in Deerfield (now Trinity International University). Brian became head trainer there for two years, and stayed on with Baxter, through its evolution into a unit of HealthSouth, until 2000. That was when he went out on his own, in part to found Functional Advantage, his own strength training business, which he operates to this day.

“I’m one of the few people I know who uses every part of my college education: athletic training, kinesiotherapy, physical education. UIC prepared me to do what I’m doing now, and I appreciate UIC for that.”

His signature event is the Simon Says challenge, a game he leads with such levity and dizzying mastery that even the most dubious participant can’t help but have fun. He does about 300 shows a year.

Brian leads interactive games at corporate parties, team-building retreats, family picnics, schools, just about anywhere.

He has now trademarked a name for himself: Fun Wizz (using the first syllable of his last name). A lot of his events are at elementary and middle schools, which fits with his goal to educate as well as entertain. “The greatest compliment I get is when a teacher says to me, ‘The kids don’t even realize they’ve learned something today,’” he says happily. For kids and adults alike, Brian infuses into his act much more than health facts. That’s what makes it so gratifying to him. “We talk about health and fitness, but also teamwork. We talk about working together, caring for each other, having fun, laughing. All those things go into being healthy.”

Brian the “edutainer” For about a decade, Brian did little in the entertainment field, mostly just doing one-off shows at the request of people he knew. But word kept spreading about his talent and enthusiasm for performing. He eventually connected with an events-management company, through which he was hired to work dozens of corporate events in Chicagoland. “It started out as clowning, balloon-twisting, stilt-walking, unicycling, that stuff,” he says. “And I liked it, but it wasn’t fulfilling. Then, it finally hit me! I knew what I wanted to do.”




Brian the family man Brian Wismer and his wife Lauren, who hopped a plane together to join the circus in Japan just weeks after returning from their honeymoon, are still running a show together. All three of their daughters—Shalyn, Danielle and Kristin—are now in college, and they’re all happy to get in on the act.

Lost in Translation

Members of the Bhutanese refugee community in Chicago

Being forced from your homeland devastates your spirit, mind and body. New research seeks to reduce communication barriers that keep refugees from getting restorative health care once they make a new home in Chicago. his is how it starts. You are a target. At first, you’re a target of indiscriminate hatred for your “otherness,” the minority status of your ethnicity, religion, political leaning or nationality. Later, you’re a physical target. People like you are being attacked, arrested, tortured, exiled or killed, maybe by an enemy army, or by your own government, or by militant groups in your country. Now they’re coming for you, and not just you, but your family, your children. You have to choose: You can stay, or you can leave.

You can stay in your home, your home, likely the only home you’ve ever known, maybe the home where four generations of your family were born. Or you can leave, fast. Maybe you’ll have time to hastily pack a single suitcase or maybe you won’t. If you go, it won’t be for a short time; it will be forever. Where you’ll stop, well, you probably won’t know that for some time, but it will be a foreign place, literally and figuratively.

sion are the crowded, unsanitary conditions in the camp that will probably be your first stop, and it may be a long one.

Both options break your heart, but you have to choose.

That is how a person goes from citizen to refugee, and often from a middle- or upper-class lifestyle to one of virtually no personal belongings at all. The media typically calls the experience “displacement” or “dislocation,” like an aching shoulder that will heal under care. But the truth of the journey is so much more agonizing and more permanent.

So you choose to go and, hopefully, to live, with zero certainty of what your life will look like on the other side. All you can envi-

Mansha Mirza knows something about this. Born and raised in Mumbai, India, she is the daughter and granddaughter of refugees




further when talking about getting care for mental health. “When it comes to mental health, especially counseling therapy, it’s not like a visit to your primary care doctor,” Mirza explains. “It requires so much more conversation, so much more emotion, that the role of the interpreter becomes very different. The interpreters in those cases have to convey the provider’s affect; they’re instrumental in establishing trust.” Specifically because of its challenging nature, this is the area in which Mirza and her colleagues wish to effect change: They want to develop resources to train health care providers and interpreters to deliver more efficient, more effective aid to refugees.

The best course

Mansha Mirza has been working with refugee groups in Chicago since 2005.

who migrated to India from Pakistan in the 1940s. That part of her history drew her to a doctoral dissertation on the experiences of disabled refugees who ultimately settle in the U.S. She specifically looked at Somali and Cambodian refugees, and even visited East Africa to spend time in a refugee camp there. Now Mirza, assistant professor of occupational therapy, is directing her interest in health, disability and refugee status toward another pair of resettled groups: Bhutanese and Iraqi refugees in and around Chicago. With the help of a pilot grant from the UIC Chancellor’s Discovery Fund for Multidisciplinary Research, she and two fellow researchers from the fields of communication and psychology have launched a twoyear, three-phase study into how the role of language translators impacts health care and health outcomes for these two groups.

Why refugees? “Refugees are different from other immigrants in that they tend to already have health concerns when they immigrate, because they’ve often been living in squalid conditions or in a war zone,” Mirza explains. “They’re also distinct in that they’re allowed access to public health services at the same




level of U.S. citizens from the moment they arrive.” While earning her doctorate in disability studies here in the UIC College of Applied Health Sciences, and then as a postdoctoral researcher at Northwestern University, Mirza made connections in Chicago’s refugee communities—connections she’s maintained through regular participation on the Illinois Refugee Health Task Force and her leadership of its sub-committee that focuses on disability and chronic health issues among refugees. Through those interactions, she has recognized that access to health care for refugees who have chronic health concerns, including mental health issues (like the very common PTSD), was a unique problem. Moreover, language barriers were a primary issue. “Many refugees speak languages that are very rare: Nepali or Kirundi or often a more regional dialect. There are almost no native speakers here,” she says. “It’s not like getting a Spanish translator.” The challenge swells when looking for help with medical translation, which often requires a specialized vocabulary that even native speakers may not have. It grows even

Taking on the entirety of mental health would have been undoable for two reasons. The first is that it would just be too large. So the researchers narrowed their focus to a specific problem that often surfaces in refugee communities: addiction and substance abuse. “A lot of refugees come in, if not having a full-blown problem, then being at risk of a problem,” reports Mirza. “Many of them lived in refugee camps where they’re not allowed to work legally, they’re in confined space, they have idle time, plus they have stressors from being displaced from their homes. All that gets exacerbated with new stressors they encounter here. “Another complication is that something that would not be considered substance abuse in their home country might be [considered so] here,” she goes on to say. “For instance, in a lot of countries, especially in the Middle East, people have fairly easy access to heavy-duty pain medication like morphine and codeine because it’s not as regulated as in the U.S. They don’t realize that they’re addicted or that [using the drugs habitually] is not socially acceptable here.” The second reason Mirza’s team wanted to concentrate on a specific category within mental health—and specifically this category—is that they knew it would increase their ability to find participants. In general, mental health issues are stigmatized in both

Bhutan and Iraq, but addiction is “comparatively more benign than something like schizophrenia,” she says, adding that, when they were recruiting for the study, they deliberately opened it to people who described themselves as “at risk” of substance abuse, so no one would have to openly admit to addiction.

A study in three parts The study is rolling out through three phases, the first of which concluded this spring: a series of three focus groups with each of the two refugee groups. In total, 22 Iraqi and 28 Bhutanese refugees took part. The point of the groups was to learn how the communities themselves perceive substance abuse: Do they see it as a problem? Where is the line between use and abuse? What factors might trigger or protect an individual from crossing that line? What are each community’s self-identified needs in this area? Mirza reports that it took time to get the conversation going: “At the beginning, there was a lot of silence. And then gradually people started talking, typically describing someone else’s situation: ‘Well, I had a friend who had a problem like this.’ But it’s OK; even that is taking a step forward.” The two-hour focus groups happened in the city and suburban neighborhoods where many Bhutanese and Iraqi refugees live. Both groups are heavily represented on Chicago’s far north side, along Devon,

“I’ve built contacts with leaders from the Bhutanese and Iraqi communities very slowly and very carefully over the past several years,” says Mirza, pictured with community partner Rene Luna.

and the Bhutanese also settle in DuPage County. The suburban Iraqi community is mostly in Skokie, according to Mirza.

Waiting is the hardest part

To facilitate the focus groups, the researchers engaged two highly skilled and proficient interpreters—one bilingual in Nepali and English for the Bhutanese group, one bilingual in Arabic and English for the Iraqi group. The sessions’ leader was a clinical psychologist—the same one for all the groups—who will stay on through the study’s second phase: individual counseling sessions with a handful of people who participated in the focus groups. “We wanted to start building rapport between the psychologist and the participants from the beginning,” Mirza says, “to give a little sense of familiarity to all parties going into phase two.” The second phase involves selecting three Bhutanese and three Iraqi focus-group participants, each of whom will engage in two, one-on-one counseling sessions with the psychologist. This time, the interaction will be mediated by interpreters of unverified skill level. The idea is to simulate a real-world situation, wherein the patient or care provider calls an agency to request an interpreter, and is assigned someone who is bilingual in English and the native language, but may or may not have experience translating for mental health counseling. The researchers will use what they learned in the focus groups, about how the refugees view and describe substance abuse, to frame conversations in the counseling sessions. This point is critical. Because the study’s aim is to examine the effects of translation, the researchers want to isolate those effects to the greatest extent possible. That means minimizing other factors that can cause communication conflict, such as, for example, erroneously assuming a Bhutanese or Iraqi refugee views and talks about substance abuse in exactly the same way as an American psychologist. All the sessions will be videorecorded. Afterward, Mirza’s team will play back the recording separately for the individual and for the psychologist; they’ll also play it for

The scarcity of interpreters for refugees seeking mental health care isn’t just postponing the delivery of care; it’s often preventing it. “There’s a stigma surrounding this topic because, in a lot of cultures, there is just no concept of mental health,” says Mansha Mirza, assistant professor of occupational therapy, “In the U.S., people might openly admit to seeing a counselor. But in many cultures, there’s just a dichotomy between sane and crazy. People resist talking about this because they’re afraid they’ll end up in an institution.” So individuals tend to wrestle with their problems for a long time before steeling themselves just to make an appointment. “Then the provider tells them there’s no interpreter available, and they’ll have to be put on a waiting list,” Mirza says. That wait time is enough to resurrect the patient’s misgivings about seeking mental health care in the first place, and it often deters them from following through. That’s part of the problem Mirza and two research collaborators are trying to address in their current study of the elements that help or hinder the success of interpreter-facilitated mental health care. According to Mirza, there’s only one agency in Chicago that provides mental health care specifically to refugees, asylees and asylum-seekers. As such, they have a number of bilingual staff and interpreters, “but they’re just one agency, and the need is huge.” Mirza and her research partners aren’t, in this study, examining how to increase numbers of interpreters. But they believe their discoveries will enhance training for mental health-related interpreters, and then that will have the secondary impact of making more current interpreters eligible to work in this niche area.




the same skilled interpreter who facilitated that individual’s focus group. “We’ll ask each of them to identify points of the session where they thought there was a language breakdown, points where they thought it was flowing very well,” says Mirza. “That’s what we need. That will help us learn what works and what does not work.” Based on everything Mirza and her colleagues learn from these qualitative findings, they’ll develop a survey for mental health care providers and mental health interpreters who work with refugee communities. It will be distributed nationally. “With the providers, I anticipate we’ll look at things like how much experience they have working with other-language groups, how extensive their experience is working

with ethnic minorities in general, and whether they’ve had any training in working with interpreters,” Mirza reports. With interpreters, the researchers might investigate specifically how much experience or formal training they’ve had in translating in mental health care settings. “Then, for both groups, we’ll look at how these factors relate to how effective they think they are in communicating with their patients,” says Mirza. Those survey responses, at last, will tell them what should happen next in order to prepare care providers and interpreters for this unique and important type of service need. The research team will then seek funding that will allow them to undertake the project of preparing a training model.

Illinois’ refugees

What’s next The outcomes of this carefully executed work remain to be seen. As is true for all community-based participatory research, each phase generates new information that guides the next phase. But Mirza does know what she hopes and expects will come of it. “The ideal scenario would be that, when someone feels ready to get help for their mental health concern, they get an appointment and they get a qualified interpreter at that appointment. And the interpreter and the psychologist both know how to work with each other to best communicate with this person who’s already suffered so much, who’s in need, and who’s ready for help at last.”

While it’s difficult, if not impossible, to find exact numbers of refugees entering Chicago each year, the Office of Refugee Resettlement, a unit of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, keeps refugee data for the state of Illinois. Below is a snapshot of how much of the state’s refugee population has comprised individuals from Bhutan and Iraq since 2008.

Note: Burma is the only other nation from which annual migration of refugees to Illinois reached triple digits in all five years represented.





Mission to be accomplished A new scholarship advances the priorities of DHD student Annie Hopkins, whose own vision-driven life ended much too soon.

On Jan. 20, 2009, the disability community lost a tireless advocate and social entrepreneur when Anne “Annie” Hopkins (pictured above) passed away unexpectedly at age 24. At the time, Hopkins was a larger-than-life student in the AHS disability studies doctoral program. Her academic work and her personal accomplishments all centered on one goal: to positively change societal perceptions of people with disabilities. Before her death, Hopkins and her brother Stephen co-founded 3E Love, an apparel company that produces merchandise featuring Hopkins’ wheelchair-heart logo, which she designed in 2004 when she and Stevie (as

her brother is known) were both undergraduates at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

and in Chicago, who are working to continue Hopkins’ mission related to disability advocacy and awareness.

That simple icon, as well as the products that feature it, are now embraced around the world, and the once small-scale, single-purposed T-shirt company has become “an international movement of acceptance,” to quote the 3E Love website.

At UIC, the scholarship will annually support graduate-level students in the AHS Department of Disability and Human Development whose academic interests align with Hopkins’ own: researching the intersection of disability and sexual/romantic relationships; pursuing social entrepreneurship; and advocating for the social model of disability, i.e., the concept that people are disabled more by unaccommodating environments, negative attitudes and social exclusion than they are by their medical diagnoses.

After Hopkins’ death, her family established the Anne Hopkins Foundation to advance the work she was striving to accomplish during her life. In 2013, the foundation endowed the Anne Hopkins Scholarship Fund to support University of Illinois students, in Urbana-Champaign




“Society and people’s perceptions are what make people disabled,” says Stevie Hopkins, talking about the importance of his sister’s academic work. “Research in the social model of disability opens people’s minds, and its impact expands beyond disability. I can’t change my disability, but I can change the way the world views the disabled. There shouldn’t [have to] be laws to enforce accessibility; society should naturally consider all people in all types of decisions, policy and designs.” Chun-Shan “Sandie” Yi and Ashley Volion, PhD students in AHS’ disability studies program, were the inaugural Anne Hopkins Scholarship recipients. They were recognized on Sept. 30, 2013, during a reception attended by Hopkins’ colleagues, family and friends. Yi’s work addresses the bodily and social experiences of disabled people, particularly

experiences of social stigma. She creates “wearable art” that “centers on the histories and narratives generated within and performed by the disabled body through everyday social interactions, including intimate relationships with the self and others,” she says.

area by “delving further into how one’s disability and level of needed care-assistance affects how one views [him/herself] as a sexual being.”

Yi will use her scholarship award to launch a series of community-based art workshops. She intends then to curate an exhibit of the art produced in those settings to promote community-building, education and advocacy.

“Annie was always thinking about how she could apply what she learned to benefit others,” recalls Stevie Hopkins.

Volion’s research focuses on issues of sexuality and disability. Her early research is directed towards “debunking various myths associated with the intersections of gender, sexuality and disability from the vantage point of women with serious physical disabilities,” she says. With this scholarship award, she hopes to advance her research in this

Education was very important for Hopkins. Even more important was action—selfless action.

The Anne Hopkins Scholarship makes it possible for students to achieve the degree Hopkins wasn’t able to finish, and to further her legacy of selfless action through research and advocacy. To donate to the Anne Hopkins Scholarship Fund visit, ahs.uic. edu/support. To learn more about Annie Hopkins and the foundation in her name, visit annehopkinsfoundation.org. To learn more about 3E Love, visit 3Elove.com.

On Sept. 30, 2013, the Department of Disability and Human Development hosted a reception to remember Annie Hopkins and to celebrate the first recipients of the Anne Hopkins Scholarship Fund awards.

Hopkins’ wheelchair-heart logo was on display in many forms during the reception. 22



“Annie’s goal was to be ‘Everywhere Annie.’ She helped me come out of my shell. She taught me to live life to the fullest, to never take a day for granted,” said Janie Mejias, Hopkins’ close friend and former roommate.

“Annie was really happy here at UIC. She met amazing friends and found her true passion and calling,” said her brother, Stevie Hopkins. “Thank you for keeping her work alive.”

“We’ll always remember Annie’s infectious enthusiasm,” said DHD department head Tamar Heller, here presenting the award plaque to ChunShan Yi. “I believe this scholarship truly befits Annie and what she was about.” “Everything was a laboratory for Annie. She was always learning or teaching something,” said Robin Jones, Hopkins’ friend and instructor in the DHD program.

“I never got to meet Annie, but she’s been an inspiration to me anyway. I knew 3E Love before I knew of Annie,” said scholarship recipient Ashley Volion, who skyped into the reception due to travel difficulties. “I think Annie and I would be great friends.”

“I wish I had met Annie. She was a fellow artist,” said scholarship recipient Chun-Shan Yi.

2013 –2014




In the AHS Alumni Survey conducted via e-mail in October 2013, we asked alumni to tell us something they’d like us to know about them. The word cloud above was generated using the text from all of the responses we received. The more prominent the word, the more frequently it appeared in the responses. The survey was completed by 321 alumni. Here are some of the more interesting findings:

85 72 51

% % %

found that their AHS education was very valuable in their career progression



are working in a field related to the degree earned from AHS

have visited campus or attended a UIC event in the past five years

Quality/ reputation

of their chosen academic program was the top reason alumni chose AHS

Research, fellow alumni

are the top two types of stories alumni want to hear from AHS

Student academic support was selected as the most appropriate use of donor funds


We’re looking forward to seeing you at

May 2-4 It’s the College of Applied Health Sciences’ second annual weekend for all alumni to network, socialize, earn continuing education credit, and reconnect with their own past through their alma mater.

For details, visit www.ahs.uic.edu/alumniweekend




AHS MAGAZINE University of Illinois at Chicago Office of the Dean (MC 518) College of Applied Health Sciences 808 South Wood Street, 169 CMET Chicago, Illinois 60612-7305 Address Service Requested

Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage PAID Chicago, Illinois Permit No. 4860

The UIC College of Applied Health Sciences is now on

go.uic.edu/UICAHS_LinkedIn Join the official professional network for AHS alumni, students and faculty today.