Alumni News

Alumni Affairs News

Greetings, MedCats! Thanks to the generous support of so many of you, every student in the Class of 2018 received the gift of a white coat and stethoscope, to help each of them get off to a good start in medical school. This was the first formal effort by the Office of Alumni Affairs to create a program of direct support to incoming students....


Like Father, Like Son

Written By: Jane Erikson Of all the family photos in Scott Klewer’s office, one seems especially significant. It’s a 1997 photo of his two young sons, in a frame decorated with quotes. One says, “Dad, we’d like to be just like you.”  Seventeen years later, Klewer, a 1991 graduate of the UA College of Medicine and now chief of the UA Division of...


Andrew Kraft, MD, Appointed Sydney E. Salmon Endowed Chair and Director of the UA Cancer Center

Written By: Jane Erikson During his 35 years as a cancer clinician and researcher, Andrew S. Kraft, MD, has experienced many memorable moments. “One that stands out was when I first used Gleevec to treat a gastrointestinal stromal tumor,” he recalled. “The patient had an amazing response. “This experience in the mid 1990’s taught me that...


Class Notes, October 2014

Gabriel Sarah, MD, Class of 2008Gabriel.Sarah@UCSF.eduI have recently been appointed health sciences assistant clinical professor in the Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care at the University of California – San Francisco, with the UCSF division of pediatric anesthesia. Prior to my appointment, I completed my residency in anesthesiology...


Bennett Blum, MD: World-Renowned Forensic Psychiatrist, Expert in Elder Abuse, Rabbi and Private Practitioner

Written By: Jane Erikson In 2004, Bennett Blum, MD, traveled to The Hague, Netherlands, as a United Nations consultant and expert witness in the war-crimes trial of Yugoslav army general Pavle Strugar – a follower of Slobodan Milosevic, the former Yugoslavian president and convicted war criminal. Strugar was found guilty on multiple counts of...


MD-MPH Program Offers ‘Broader Picture’

By Jane Erikson The College of Medicine – Tucson’s MD-MPH program marked a milestone in May when it awarded its 50th MD-MPH degree. The recipient: Alex Perry, a Glendale native who this month will begin his residency in internal medicine, with plans to focus on infectious disease, at Oregon Health & Science University. “I actually was hesitant...


Founding Faculty: Jack M. Layton, MD, Recalls his 'Once-in-a-Lifetime' Opportunity

By Jane Erikson Jack Layton, MD, professor of pathology at the University of Iowa, was checking a resident’s surgical pathology report when his assistant interrupted. “Dr. Layton, you have a long distance call from a Dr. DuVal in Arizona,” she told him. “I don’t know him. I wonder what he wants,” Layton replied. “Well, he really wants to talk to...


A Message from the UA Senior Vice President for Health Sciences

Greetings, College of Medicine Alumni!In my last message, I said I would share the latest developments in a number of key UA College of Medicine -- Tucson leadership searches, and I’m happy to announce several major new appointments.Dr. Andrew S. Kraft, nationally noted prostate cancer physician-scientist and cancer center administrator, has been...


Class Notes, July 2014

Harry Calvino, MD, Class of 1981hcalvino@msn.comI’m still practicing emergency medicine part-time as a Locums guy in Wyoming, Nebraska and Colorado, mostly to support my flying habit!Carolyn Okorie, MD, Class of 2010cokorie@gmail.comI finished my pediatrics residency in Portland, Oregon and will complete my chief residency year in June! After this...


Remembering Alumni

It is with great sadness that we share the news of two of our outstanding alumni who have passed away; James DiNapoloi, Class of 1980, and Dan DeMerell, Class of 1999.James (Jim) Anthony DiNapoli, MD, Class of 1980Jim DiNapoli was long-time resident of Colorado, practicing emergency medicine, then occupational medicine.  He died March 27 after a...


Coming Up Next…

Please join us as we celebrate the Class of 2018 White Coat Ceremony on August 8 from 5 to 6:30 pm in Centennial Hall. It’s a wonderful opportunity for all of us to show our incoming students how excited we are to welcome them to the MedCat family. We also encourage you to bring your white coat, and walk with our faculty as they enter the hall. If...


Francisco Garcia, MD, MPH: A Catalyst for Change

By Jane Erikson As Director and Chief Medical Officer of the Pima County Health Department, Francisco Garcia, MD, MPH, is responsible for safeguarding the health of more than 1 million people. It sounds a bit daunting. But Garcia, a 1992 graduate of the UA College of Medicine, has been focused on the health of populations – particularly minorities...


Boston Marathon 2014: ‘A very, very exciting day’

By Jane Erikson Friday, April 19, 2013, was a beautiful spring day in Boston. “It’s what we’d been waiting for all winter. The weather was getting warm, everyone wanted to be outside,” recalls Tiffany Blake-Lamb, MD. It was also four days after the tragic Boston Marathon bombings, and she and everyone else in Boston and neighboring Watertown were...


Scholarship Fund a First for Physiology Students

By Jane Erikson Every year since 2007, undergraduates have made physiology the second-most popular major at the University of Arizona. And the UA is one of just a few institutions in North America to offer a physiology undergraduate major within a college of medicine. This year, more than 1,700 students are enrolled as physiology majors and pre-...


Alumni Affairs News

The Alumni Affairs board has identified a critically important strategic priority: helping medical students survive the financial challenges they face now, and will face later, after they have completed training.Median medical student debt is now $175,000, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. Thirty years ago, student debt...


Checking in With the Class of 2017

By Jane Erikson Last October we introduced you to four students of the Class of 2017. We asked them recently about the experiences – expected and unexpected – they have had during their first six months of medical school.  Hannes Prescher started med school thinking he would become an orthopaedic surgeon. But shadowing ER doctors during winter...


Calling on Alumni to Show Support for Students

By Jane EriksonCatherine Cosentino, MD, has been passionate about the practice of medicine since before she entered medical school. Now she is equally passionate about a barrier that keeps some students from pursuing their dreams of becoming physicians.When Cosentino graduated from the UA College of Medicine in 1983, the average medical student...


‘Trust and Understanding’

By Jane EriksonVanessa Jensen, MD, will never forget her first surgical trauma case – and how the experience left her feeling conflicted.Jensen was in her third year as a medical student. The patient was a UA student, the victim of a hit-and-run, bleeding out from a ruptured spleen.“I never felt so exhilarated and challenged at the same time,”...


Pioneering Pathologist Anna R. Graham, MD, Retires

By Jane Erikson When Anna R. Graham interviewed at the UA College of Medicine in 1970, she was asked about her plans for having children. She answered the question - which today would lead the interviewer straight to human resources – and took her place with the Class of 1974. She stayed for her residency, then joined the faculty. Year after year...


A Message from the UA Senior Vice President for Health Sciences

Greetings, College of Medicine Alumni!I’m writing to you in my new dual role as Interim Dean of the UA College of Medicine – Tucson, and UA Senior Vice President for Health Sciences.As you may know, Steve Goldschmid, MD, who served as Dean of the College of Medicine for more than five years, began a new role on March 3 as Associate Vice President...


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