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Toppel Career Center Executive Director Awarded Fulbright

UM News

Christian Garcia

Christian Garcia

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (July 25, 2014)—Christian Garcia, the executive director of the Patricia and Harold Toppel Career Center, has received a Fulbright Scholar Program Award to participate in the US-Germany International Education Administrators Program. He will head to Germany in October for a two-week seminar designed to familiarize U.S. higher education administrators with Germany’s higher education system, society, and culture.

Garcia is among only 20 recipients of the Fulbright German study program, which is open to full-time college administrators who have significant involvement with international exchanges, alumni affairs, fundraising, or career services. He has plenty of experience with the latter. Joining the career center as associate director in 2001, he helped transform the center into one of the nation’s most innovative and dynamic, most recently spearheading its expansion and move to a new high-tech home on Ponce de Leon Boulevard.

He also serves on the board of directors of the National Association of Colleges and Employers, a Bethlehem, Pennsylvania-based nonprofit that connects college career services and recruiting professionals interested in the employment of college graduates.

On his Fulbright, Garcia will spend the first week in Berlin, attending briefings and government meetings and visiting campuses and cultural events. During the second week, he’ll travel with a smaller group to other German cities.

The Fulbright Program was established in 1946 under legislation introduced by then-Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the longtime chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee who had a profound influence on America’s foreign policy. His vision for mutual understanding shaped the prestigious exchange program that bears his name.

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, it operates in over 155 countries worldwide and awards approximately 8,000 grants annually, but just a few hundred to teachers and professionals. U.S. and foreign students and scholars receive the overwhelming majority.

Posted in Briefly Noted, Honors, NewsComments (0)

Scott Levin Appointed Executive Director of Herbert, UHealth Wellness Centers

Scott Levin

Scott Levin starts full time on August 22.

By Mike Piacentino
Special to UM News

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (July 14, 2014) – Scott Levin, a leader in campus recreation and wellness, has been appointed executive director of the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center and the UHealth Fitness and Wellness Center. He starts full time on August 22.

Levin comes to UM from Georgia State University, a public research institution with more than 30,000 students, where he has served as the director of recreational services since 2000. As the chief administrative officer leading 29 full-time employees, Levin oversaw intramural and club sports, fitness testing and assessment, outdoor recreation, a multitude of fitness and instructional classes, and aquatics programming.

“Scott is both a collaborative and innovative leader,” said Patricia A. Whitely, vice president for student affairs. “With 30 years of experience, I have no doubt Scott will bring his outstanding leadership in campus recreation and wellness to Miami.”

In August 2001, Levin opened Georgia State’s $33 million Student Recreation Center. Under his leadership, Georgia State’s Indian Creek Recreation Area was remodeled in 2013 to include a new outdoor recreation lodge and ropes challenge course.

As a campus leader, Levin served on many committees within Georgia State’s Division of Student Affairs and continually collaborated with other campus units to provide high-quality campus recreation and wellness programming for students and employees.

In 2013, Levin received the prestigious George M. Sparks Award, an annual award that recognizes one student, faculty, and staff member from Georgia State University who exemplifies a willingness to go the extra mile with good humor and perseverance.

“I am thrilled to play a key role in the University of Miami’s efforts to assess and respond to the wellness needs of the UM community by offering meaningful learning, growth, and engagement opportunities for our students, faculty, staff, and alumni,” Levin said. “We will continually deliver the highest level of customer satisfaction through our programs, services, and facilities.”

Prior to his appointment at Georgia State, Levin worked at Bowling Green State University for 15 years in a variety of campus recreation positions. He received a master’s degree in administration of recreation services and a bachelor’s degree in K-12 education and physical education from Southern Illinois University.

“I am confident that his expertise and transformative ideas will enhance the wellness experience for all at the University of Miami,” Whitely added. “I am happy to welcome Scott and his wife, Cheryl, to our UM community. They, along with their daughter, Lauren, a graduate of Georgia State University, will be great additions to our ’Canes family.”

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Renowned Violinist Charles Castleman Joins the Music Faculty

UM News

The appointment of Charles Castleman, one of music world’s greatest and most beloved mentors, is " a watershed moment for the Frost School of Music."

The appointment of Charles Castleman, one of the music world’s greatest and most beloved mentors, is ” a watershed moment for the Frost School of Music.”

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (July 9, 2014)—Charles Castleman, a prize-winning concert artist, celebrated master teacher, and renowned string quartet coach, is joining the Frost School of Music faculty as professor of violin after nearly 40 years at the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester in New York, where he chaired the strings department for eight years.

Castleman is one of the world’s most active performers and pedagogues on the violin today. A dynamic and highly expressive musical artist, he has appeared as a featured soloist with the orchestras of Philadelphia, Boston, Brisbane, Chicago, Hong Kong, Moscow, Mexico City, New York, San Francisco, Seoul, and Shanghai, to name a few. A beloved artist-teacher with thousands of devotees and former students around the world, he has conducted master classes in all major cities of Europe, the U.S., Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.

He is also the founder and director of the prestigious Castleman Quartet Program, an intensive and extensive summer workshop in solo and chamber performance that is celebrating its 45th continuous year. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma praised it as “the best program of its kind… a training ground in lifemanship.”

Castleman will begin transitioning his teaching from Eastman to Frost during the 2014-2015 academic year. He will be traveling regularly to the Coral Gables campus beginning this September to teach select private lessons, conduct master classes, and coach chamber music ensembles. He will begin teaching exclusively at Frost at the start of the fall 2015 semester. Full-time undergraduate and graduate violin students who are selected to matriculate into the University and the Frost School at the start of the fall 2015 semester will then be eligible to study full time with Castleman. The application deadlines are this December 1, and admission requirements and audition information are available at www.miami.edu/frost.

A remarkably gifted performing artist whose first public performance was at age 6 with Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops, Castleman made his solo recital debuts at age 9 at Jordan Hall in Boston and Town Hall in New York. He was a medalist in his early 20s at the prestigious and highly competitive International “Tchaikovsky” and “Brussels” competitions (the International Tchaikovsky Competition is held every four years in Moscow, Russia; the Queen Elisabeth Competition, also known as the Brussels Concours Musical International, is held in Brussels, Belgium).

The recording of Castleman’s competition performance of Léon Jongen’s Concerto for Violin and Orchestra with the Belgian National Orchestra was recently selected as one of only 17 violin performances to represent the excellence of the Brussels Concours Musical’s 50-year history and is included in a multi-box CD set on the Cypres Records label. Castleman’s former students have also been winners at international competitions including Brussels, Munich, Naumburg, and Szeryng and perform in top professional chamber groups and major orchestras.

“The appointment of Charles Castleman is a watershed moment for the Frost School of Music,” said Frost Dean Shelton G. Berg. “He is one of the world’s greatest and most beloved mentors in music. Charles is an innovator and forward thinker, and he will contribute greatly to the paradigm-shifting curriculum and ideals of our school. We know that the world of music continues to expand, and we will nurture and inform the skill set that prepares our graduates for vibrant careers.”

Castleman credits the Frost School’s forward-thinking faculty and leadership for his decision to join the faculty, beginning August 15. “The leadership, history, and location of the Frost School uniquely positions it to find, educate, and nourish young musicians of the highest achievement, endowed with the most extraordinary talent, from all the Americas. I am pleased and proud to be able to contribute to its future effectiveness and to add my input to its remarkably innovative thrust.”

In addition to teaching private violin lessons exclusively at the Frost School and coaching Frost string quartets starting in fall 2015, Castleman will interact with all string musicians in the Frost Chamber Orchestra, Frost Symphony Orchestra, and the Frost School’s Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra through master classes and workshops. He also will incorporate his creative and collaborative teaching concepts into the Frost School’s trailblazing Experiential Music Curriculum, help shape a brand new type of master’s degree in performance, and participate in leading-edge initiatives at Frost, such as Universal Music U @ Frost to explore new concert and recording paradigms for classical music artists.

A prolific recording artist himself, Castleman’s impressive discography includes some of the most difficult works ever written for violin. His solo albums include recordings of six Solo Sonatas by Ysaÿe, eight Csardases for Violin and Orchestra by Jenő Hubay, and ten virtuoso cameos by Pablo de Sarasate. He also has recorded selections by George Gershwin and contemporary chamber music for violin with harpsichord by Darius Milhaud, Walter Piston, Samuel Adler, and much more.

As one of 16 Ford Foundation Concert Artists, Castleman commissioned David Amram’s Violin Concerto and premiered it with Leonard Slatkin and the St. Louis Symphony; he later recorded it with the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra for the Newport Classic label. He is a dedicatee of the Paracelsus-inspired violin-harpsichord work “Lares Hercii” by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Christopher Rouse. 

Castleman’s long-term chamber music associations have included performing and recording with The New String Trio of New York, plus recording numerous albums on major labels with the Raphael Trio and much-admired premieres at the Vienna Festival and the Kennedy Center.

Castleman earned degrees from Harvard University, Curtis Institute of Music, and the University of Pennsylvania. His teachers were Emanuel Ondricek (teaching assistant of Otakar Ševčík, a student of Eugène Ysaÿe) and Ivan Galamian (venerated violinist and pedagogue). Castleman credits David Oistrakh, Henryk Szeryng, and Josef Gingold as his most influential coaches. He plays the “Marquis de Champeaux” Stradivarius and “Sammons” Goffriller from 1708, and chooses from over 80 bows.

From the four pinnacles of performing, teaching, recording, and collaborating, classical music professionals hold Castleman in the highest regard. His joining the award-winning and esteemed full-time faculty of the Frost School of Music, of which close to 50 percent has been hired since Dean Berg joined the school in 2007 will quickly help expand the Frost School’s range and reputation throughout the world.

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Medical Student and Former Navy Pilot Named UM’s First Tillman Military Scholar

Special to UM News

MIAMI, Fla. (June 24, 2014) —William Burns, a former U.S. Navy fighter pilot who is entering his fourth year as a medical student, has been named the University of Miami’s first Tillman Military Scholar. The $15,000 award is given by the Pat Tillman Foundation to active-duty service members, veterans and military spouses who are pursuing higher education, and who wish to continue to be of service to others.

“Many would think twice about going back to school later in life for a second career,” said Burns, 40, a lieutenant commander who has been in the Navy for nearly 20 years. “Instead, I see it as an opportunity to continue my service to others through healing. I believe my operational experience will give me a unique perspective in the Navy Medical Corps, and I am excited about the future.”

Burns is the first UM applicant ever selected for the honor, and the only applicant out of seven from UM selected this year. The Pat Tillman Foundation — named for the Arizona Cardinals star who left a successful professional football career in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks to enlist in the U.S. Army, and who was killed in Afghanistan two years later — selected a total of 60 scholarship recipients from 7,500 applications received nationwide.

“This is a tremendous honor for Will and the school,” said Alex J. Mechaber, M.D., Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education and associate professor of medicine. “I cannot think of a student better suited for this award. Will is a class act who represents the fine qualities that the late Pat Tillman displayed.”

The Pat Tillman Foundation agreed.

“William stood out for his desire to not only continue his service at home, but also to leverage his military leadership skills in a new field — medicine,” said Cara Campbell, the foundation’s program manager. “Nearly a quarter of Tillman Military Scholars have similarly gone on to pursue their education in medicine. We’re proud to support him in that endeavor.”

Burns will meet his fellow Tillman Military Scholars at the fifth annual Pat Tillman Leadership Summit, which is being held June 26-29 at Roosevelt University in Chicago.

He became a pilot after graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis in 1995, in part because he originally hoped to be an astronaut. Although that never happened, his career has been filled with plenty of Earth-bound excitement. Over the next 16 years, he was deployed to the Mediterranean, to Kosovo, and twice to Iraq and three times to Afghanistan to provide close air support in his F/A-18C Hornet to ground troops in the thick of the action.

Ultimately, however, it was the quieter times during stateside duty that led Burns to medicine.

“I had thought about becoming a physician while I was at Annapolis, but aviation won out,” he said. “I’m not big at sitting behind a desk, so I looked for something else to do in between deployments. When I was stationed with theVFA-25 squadron in California in 2008, I became a volunteer EMT. Later, while working at the Pentagon, I became a volunteer firefighter/EMT for Fairfax County, Virginia. In 2010, I began applying to medical schools.”

In some ways, Burns’ gradual shift into medicine was predestined. Growing up in Tulsa, Okla., he had medical-military role models right at home. His mother was a nurse anesthetist, and his stepfather was a family physician — both had served in the U.S. Army Reserve — and his father had been a U.S. Army Special Forces medic in Vietnam.

Burns is a lifelong Hurricanes fan with a strong interest in international medicine, so the Miller School was also a natural choice. Since he arrived, he has distinguished himself through his leadership — he has been president of his class three years running — and through his commitment to service — he becomes the new executive director of the Mitchell Wolfson Sr. Department of Community Service program, known as DOCS, in the fall.

He has also volunteered his time and expertise through Medical Students in Action (in the Dominican Republic) and Project Medishare through Caneshare (in Haiti), as a Step 1 Review Course teacher and anatomy teaching assistant, and as a volunteer counselor during Heart Week at Camp Boggy Creek, which serves seriously ill children and their families.

Burns will owe the Navy four years of active duty service after he graduates, and unlike most of his classmates, he will be matching with a residency at a military medical center. If he pursues emergency medicine, his options will be Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, in Virginia, or Naval Medical Center San Diego, in California. If he pursues his other interest, trauma surgery, a third option will be Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.

“I am committed to service,” said Burns, “but I also am always seeking new challenges. I look forward to a career in medicine because it will fulfill both of those goals.”

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Richard K. Parrish II Receives Florida Society of Ophthalmology’s Leadership Award

Richard K. Parrish II

Richard K. Parrish II

MIAMI, Fla. (June 25, 2014) — The Miller School of Medicine’s Richard K. Parrish II has received the John R. Brayton, Jr., M.D., Leadership Award from the Florida Society of Ophthalmology (FSO), the state’s preeminent professional association for physicians who specialize in vision care.

The award, presented at the FSO’s annual meeting in Orlando, Fla., recognizes a Florida-based ophthalmologist who exemplifies leadership and dedication to the profession.

Parrish joined the medical school faculty as assistant professor in 1982, was promoted to professor in 1994, and served as residency program director from 1995 through 1999. From 1996 through 1999, he was chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology. He currently serves as associate dean for graduate medical education for the Miller School, chairman of the Graduate Medical Education Committee, and  the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education’s (ACGME) Designated Institutional Official for Jackson Memorial Hospital. He has a principal interest in glaucoma surgical care and was project chairman of the National Eye Institute Fluorouracil Filtering Surgery Trial. He is a vice-chairman of the Ocular Hypertension Treatment Study (OHTS) and principal investigator of the OHTS Optic Disc Reading Center.

Parrish earned his undergraduate degree from Indiana University and his medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine. He completed his internship at the University of Alabama and his residency in ophthalmology at Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia, where he also served as chief resident. He completed a clinical fellowship in glaucoma and a research fellowship in glaucoma at Bascom Palmer.

Parrish has been involved with the American Ophthalmological Society since 1996 and was a member of FSO’s Board of Directors from 1996 to 1999. He also currently serves on the editorial board of the American Journal of Ophthalmology and as the executive editor of the Glaucoma Section of the American Journal of Ophthalmology.

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