Dean's Weekly Message

April 29, 2019

Dear Colleague: 

Congratulations to Malik Y. Kahook, MD, professor of ophthalmology, who has been named to The Ophthalmologist’s Power List 2019 as one of 50 ophthalmologists selected from 2,000 internationally recognized ophthalmologists nominated for this prestigious distinction. The Ophthalmologist is an international publication and the 50 individuals were chosen in five categories: Champions for Change, Inventors, Emerging Leaders, Mentors, and Surgical Pioneers.  Malik was selected as one of the 10 top inventors. In his interview with The Ophthalmologist, Malik discusses the rewards of being inventor, clinician, and educator. “From a clinical standpoint, training fellows who go on to achieve their work and life-related goals is the ultimate source of professional fulfilment,” he said. 

The spring issue of CU Medicine Today magazine has been published and it is again a reminder of the remarkable colleagues we have here at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. The cover article features Hillary Yaffe, MD, a fellow in the Division of Transplant Surgery, training with Elizabeth Pomfret, MD, PhD, and James Pomposelli, MD, PhD. Ten years ago, while she was in medical school, Hillary donated a portion of her liver to save her father’s life, and Liz and Jim were the physicians in charge of her care. Other features include a family with three adult sons who have Duchenne muscular dystrophy and who each year teach a class in the Molecules to Medicine course, a storm-chasing physician, Jason Persoff, MD, who uses that experience to help hospitals prepare for emergencies, and a profile of Eric Campbell, PhD, who is creating a bioethics research center on the Anschutz Medical Campus. 

Elizabeth McCullagh, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Physiology and Biophysics, is the lead author of an article published last week in PLOS Biology about the “Request a Woman Scientist” database that she created about a year ago with some friends. “The idea came from repeated experiences of seeing all men panels (‘manels’) and women’s scientific expertise often excluded in the public realm,” Liz and her co-authors write. In November 2016, they started with a grassroots organization called 500 Women Scientists, hoping to collect 500 signatures. Within hours, they had more than 500. Since the launch of the database in January 2018 through November 2018, when data was generated for the PLOS Biology article, more than 7,500 women from 133 countries have signed up and the platform has been accessed more than 100,000 times by journalists, conference organizers, school teachers, and other scientists. The database also was featured in an article last week in STAT. 

On Wednesday, April 24, the School of Medicine hosted a dinner to thank the admissions committee and interview sub-committee, who help with the daunting task of evaluating the hundreds of candidates who are invited to interview to become members of our matriculating class. Our incoming MD class can have 184 students. This year, the School of Medicine received 8,666 applications and we had 110 interviewers who met with 726 applicants for the MD class and the Medical Scientist Training Program. Our School’s full-time admissions team works constantly on the year-round logistical efforts of managing the entire process from screening, reviewing, and interviewing medical students in the matriculating class. We are always aspiring to improve the quality of patient care and the preparation we provide to future physicians and researchers. It is especially gratifying that we start from the high standards of those who came before us, who willingly contribute their time, and who are still valuable contributors to our School. 

Mark Kennedy, the sole finalist for the CU Presidency selected by the CU Board of Regents, visited the CU Anschutz Medical Campus last Wednesday. He offered introductory remarks and answered questions for an hour during a forum on our campus. If you were unable to attend, the CU System Office has posted a video online. The Regents have invited members of the CU community to provide comments through online form that is available until 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 30.

Have a good week,

John J. Reilly, Jr., MD
Richard D. Krugman Endowed Chair
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and
Dean, School of Medicine


The Dean’s weekly message is an email news bulletin from John J. Reilly, Jr., MD, Dean of the CU School of Medicine, that is distributed to inform University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty members, staff, students and others about issues pertaining to the School’s mission of education, research, clinical care and community service.  See the UCH-Insider →


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