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Briefly Noted

Dipen J. Parekh Named Chief Clinical Officer

UM News

Dipen Parekh, M.D.

Dipen Parekh, M.D.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (September 1, 2017)—Dipen J. Parekh, chair of the Department of Urology and director of robotic surgery, has been named chief clinical officer of the University of Miami Health System.

“Dr. Parekh is one of the world’s most experienced and innovative surgeons in robotic-assisted urologic oncology, and the perfect person to continue the critically important process of building and enhancing our medical practice,” Edward Abraham, acting executive vice president for health affairs and CEO of UHealth, said in his announcement last week.

As Abraham, who is also dean and chief academic officer of the Miller School of Medicine, noted, Parekh brought the da Vinci Xi robotic surgical system to UHealth, leading it to the spectacular milestone this month of the 5,000th da Vinci procedure performed at University of Miami Hospital. Among the benefits of these procedures, Abraham said, are greater precision, smaller incisions, shorter recovery times, and improved patient outcomes.

Since joining the Miller School in 2012, Parekh, who holds the Victor A. Politano Endowed Chair in Urology and is a member of Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, has restructured the clinical, operational, and financial management of the Department of Urology, significantly increasing patient access to urology services while enhancing patient satisfaction.

His internationally acclaimed research is advancing treatment on many fronts, and he has shared those advances with surgeons around the world.

As chief clinical officer, Parekh will be in charge of all UHealth outpatient and inpatient services, and will work closely with all the chairs and clinical faculty to enhance the clinical enterprise.

His appointment, Abraham said, will give Thinh Tran, M.D., UHealth’s chief operations officer, more time to focus on the health system’s extensive operational issues.

“Working together, and with all of us, Dr. Parekh and Dr. Tran will accelerate our transformation to the health system we need to be in today’s rapidly changing environment,” Abraham said.

 

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Carl Schulman Appointed Executive Dean of Research at the Miller School

UM News

Carl Schulman

Carl Schulman

Carl Schulman, professor of surgery, Eunice Bernhard Endowed Chair in Burns, and director of the William Lehman Injury Research Center, has been appointed executive dean for research, Miller School Dean and Chief Academic Officer Edward Abraham announced last week.

In making the announcement, Abraham expressed his deep appreciation for Dushyantha Jayaweera, M.D., senior associate dean for research who had served in that role, for his multiple contributions to the Miller School’s research enterprise, and for taking on the additional responsibilities. He will continue to be an integral part of the research leadership as senior associate dean for research.

In his announcement, Abraham said:

Dr. Schulman has a long and distinguished history of service to the Miller School and the community. He earned his medical degree from the University of South Florida College of Medicine and completed training in general surgery and received additional training in trauma and surgical critical care at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center.

He also received a Master of Science in Public Health and Ph.D. in epidemiology from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Dr. Schulman has been involved in undergraduate and graduate medical education, and is currently the associate program director for the general surgery residency program. He has mentored many surgical residents and graduate students in his clinical laboratory, including serving in advisory roles for their MPH and Ph.D. thesis and dissertation work. He is the director of a federally funded international telemedicine program and leads the medical content creation team for the Defense Health Agency.

With research interests focusing on the epidemiology of burns and trauma, Dr. Schulman has been awarded grants from The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Department of Defense and the CDC, among others. He has authored more than 140 peer-reviewed publications and is a reviewer for numerous journals. He is currently the principal investigator for the BMW Crash Research Program at the University of Miami. Dr. Schulman was recently elected to the Burn Science Advisory Panel of the American Burn Association (ABA). This panel oversees all ABA-affiliated clinical trials, guiding and supporting all aspects of the clinical research enterprise. He is the principal investigator on a DOD-funded Phase 1 and 2 human clinical trial, which is the first trial to look at the use of allogeneic mesenchymal stem cells in the treatment of deep second-degree burns.

Dr. Schulman has served on numerous University of Miami faculty and search committees, and was one of the inaugural recipients of the Miller School’s Citizenship Award. He was elected by the faculty and served as first vice speaker of the Medical School Faculty Council from 2008-2013 and then as speaker from 2013 to the present. He is also a member of Iron Arrow, the highest honor attained at the University of Miami.

 

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Nominate Students for the Professional Development Academy by August 29

The Toppel Career Center is accepting nominations through August 29 for the Fall 2017 Professional Development Academy class, which is open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors studying the humanities and/or social sciences.

An eight-week intensive program, the academy is designed to help students develop knowledge and skills for career readiness and success. The academy offers students the opportunity to explore critical professional competencies identified by employers, including professionalism, communication, critical thinking and ethical reasoning.

Please email Carly Smith, associate director of career readiness at the Toppel Career Center at carly@miami.edu to nominate students. You also may send students the application link directly.

 

 

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In Memoriam: William W. Sandler, Jr.

UM News

William J. 'Bill' Sandler, Jr.

William W. ‘Bill’ Sandler, Jr.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (August 10, 2017)—Former Dean of Students William W. Sandler, Jr., an epic figure at the University of Miami who counseled, mentored, and befriended four generations of students during his 43 years at the U, passed away August 6 at his Key Biscayne home. He was 83.

Sandler, who began his career at the University in 1962 as a counselor for men in the old Dean of Men’s Office, continuously rose through the administrative ranks, serving as dean of student personnel or dean of students for a quarter century, until his retirement in July 2006.

Sandler always considered himself first and foremost an advocate for students. He was instrumental in shifting the Division of Student Affairs’ focus to giving students a role in University governance and a voice in issues that mattered to them. During his time, those issues included fewer regulations on their personal lives, representation on the Board of Trustees, a rathskeller on campus, overseas conflicts, and the plight of black students.

As he put it, “We learned to work more closely with students. We became student advocates rather than university administrators.”

Pat Whitely, vice president for student affairs, who considered Sandler a mentor, said he had a profound impact on countless students and student affairs administrators like herself.

“He was known for his kindness, patience, and unflappable manner, regardless of the student challenges facing him,” Whitely said. “It was such a privilege to work closely with him.”

Over his tenure, Sandler advised fraternities and sororities, developed the Student Discipline System, instituted a student-run honor code, oversaw the Campus Chaplain’s Association, and cofounded the Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Education, which today bears his name.

Arriving at the U in the days when Interstate-95 didn’t exist, stop signs halted traffic on US 1, and campus life was disrupted by student unrest and major hurricanes, Sandler witnessed many transformative changes in the community, the student body, and the campus. He and his wife, Anita, started their own family in Building 29, one of the old World War II-era apartments on Walsh Avenue that were torn down to make way for what is now the Watsco Center. He and his daughters, Lisa Zingler and Kristine Sandler, who attended the U, were often seen walking around Lake Osceola, feeding the ducks and watching the mullet jump.

“I’ve seen a lot of changes since ’62,” Sandler said before his retirement. “They’ve all been great things. The University has become great and well respected in those years.”

Originally from Sunbury, Penn., Sandler attended Mansfield University and Pennsylvania State University, where he studied education and counseling psychology. He met his future boss and mentor, Dean Noble Hendrix, at an education convention in Philadelphia and was delighted to learn the young university had three dean openings. He immediately applied for a vacancy, anxious to take his young bride from the cold to the tropics.

He left the U briefly in the mid-1960s to become dean of students elsewhere but quickly returned because he had sand in his shoes—and the growing reputation and promise of the U in his heart. “If I go anywhere…with a U on my shirt I get all kinds of people talking to me,” he proudly noted. “It really is great to be a ’Cane.’’

Inducted into the Iron Arrow Honor Society in 1974, Sandler had many other honors over his lifetime, including the Lambda Chi Alpha Order of Merit, the Panhellenic Council’s Administrator of the Year Award, and the National Lambda Chi Alpha Award for Distinguished Service.

In addition to his wife of 55 years and his daughters, he is survived by grandchildren Lauren Zingler Davis, Shawn Zingler, Ricky Saborido, and William Saborido.

A celebration of his life  will be held at 4 p.m. on Sunday, September 17, at the Newman Alumni Center. Donations in his memory can be made to The Sandler Center For Alcohol and Other Drug Education, 1306 Stanford Drive, UC #2250, Coral Gables, FL 33146.

 

 

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Recognition for Beautifying the City Beautiful

The Lennar Foundation Medical Center and University of Miami Hillel’s home at the Braman Miller Center for Jewish Student Life were among the outstanding commercial projects recognized by the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce’s City Beautiful Awards.

The lobby of The Lennar Foundation medical Center brings the outside in.

The lobby of The Lennar Foundation Medical Center brings the outside in.

With its open, airy, light-filled lobby complete with soaring ibises, The Lennar Center was recognized for its outstanding interior, while UM Hillel, which underwent a major expansion to provide an inviting space for all students and the community to study, pray, eat, and spend time with friends, received the award for outstanding restoration.

The 200,000-square foot ambulatory care center, which opened on Ponce de Leon Boulevard last December, was made possible by a $50 million gift from the family of Leonard M. Miller, the namesake of the medical school.

The Braman Miller Center expansion on Stanford Drive was made possible through another generous gift from the Miller family and from another of Miami’s most philanthropic families, the Bramans, along with Hillel International.

The City Beautiful Awards, which celebrate the unique architecture and outstanding aesthetic found among Coral Gables’ businesses, “serve to strengthen our community through the recognition and celebration of our city’s top businesses,” Mayor Raul Valdes-Fauli said.

Also honored this year were 8/18 Fine Men’s Salons on Miracle Mile, for it outstanding visual merchandising, and Zucca Miami, the new restaurant in the Hotel St. Michel on Alcazar Avenue, for its interior dining space.

This year’s judges included Dona Spain, Coral Gables’ historic preservation officer; Ahmed Alvarez, principal at Zyscovich Architects; and Robert Chisolm, chairman of the board at R.E. Chisholm Architects, Inc.

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