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UT plans events for International Education Week

The University of Toledo Center for International Studies and Programs will spotlight International Education Week, Nov. 13-17, with more than 20 events.

“International Education Week is not only an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide, but also a great opportunity for students to study and work with people from other countries and cultures,” said Sara Clark, interim director of the Center for International Studies and Special Programs.

“This annual initiative aims to promote international understanding and build support for international educational exchange,” Clark said. “We are honored to share our different cultures and experiences to bring that unique diversity to UT.”

Listed by date, photo ops include:

• Wednesday, Nov. 15 — International Village, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Thompson Student Union Auditorium. Member organizations in the UT International Student Association will serve up free food to sample, as well as performances.

• Thursday, Nov. 16 — Paper cutting, Thompson Student Union table, noon to 1 p.m. Learn the art of Chinese paper cutting.

• Friday, Nov. 17 — Mask painting, Thompson Student Union table, noon to 1 p.m. Come paint a Chinese opera mask.

For a complete list of International Education Week events, visit

Dana Cancer Center hosts lymphedema program

The Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center at The University of Toledo is hosting “Lymphedema: From Head to Toe,” an evening of education and answers about lymphedema Monday, Nov. 13.

“Many might not be aware lymphedema can affect those recovering from other types of cancers, venous leg ulcers and chronic wounds, not just breast cancer,” said Renee Schick, manager of Renee’s Survivor Shop in the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center. “Lymphedema can also be congenital; this is referred to as primary lymphedema. This program aims to educate and provide answers to those living with this chronic condition.”

Registration begins at 5 p.m. with the program starting at 6 p.m.

Guenter Klose, MLD/CDT Certified Instructor, CLT-LANA and founder of Klose Training & Consulting, LLC in Lafayette, Colo., will be the featured speaker. Klose is an internationally known expert on lymphedema therapy. Certified in Manual Lymph Drainage (MLD) and Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT) at the renowned Foeldi Clinic in Hinterzarten, Germany, Klose was instrumental in establishing the field of lymphedema therapy and training in the U.S.

In addition, local therapists and lymphedema-product manufacturers also will be on hand to share information. The program is free and valet parking is available and refreshments will be provided.

Those interested in attending are asked to RSVP to or Renee’s Survivor Shop at 419.383.5243.

UTMC joins Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation Patient Care Network

To better serve the people in the Toledo region who suffer from addiction, The University of Toledo Medical Center has joined the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation Patient Care Network.

The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is the nation’s leading nonprofit treatment provider and its Patient Care Network is the first of its kind in the addiction treatment industry working to address the needs of patients beginning their recovery journey.

“We saw the need and felt the obligation to join the fight against substance misuse that is so prevalent in the Toledo community, the state of Ohio and our nation,” said Dan Barbee, CEO of UTMC. “As a member of the Hazelden Betty Ford Patient Care Network, we will have access to resources, best practices and most-effective treatment approaches that will be invaluable additions to our current care provided in the UTMC Adult Detoxification Inpatient Unit to aid our patients as they work toward a successful, long-term recovery.”

In early April 2017, UTMC opened a 10-bed inpatient, acute detox unit for adults ages 18 and older. The unit has treated about 320 patients with a nearly 94 percent program completion rate.

“The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation’s experience, knowledge and expertise uniquely position us as a ‘Center of Excellence’ to share our clinical best practices and tools with other leading-edge health care providers through our innovative Patient Care Network,” said Bob Poznanovich, executive director of business development for the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. “We are committed to sharing our multi-faceted, evidence-based approach to confronting the opioid crisis with states like Ohio, and our own system benefits mightily from collaborating with other leading-edge health care providers like The University of Toledo Medical Center.”

As a member of the Patient Care Network, UTMC will gain access to tools, resources and collaborative consultation for its leadership, staff, patients, families and communities. This is especially timely as the opioid crisis places added pressures on hospital systems, substance use disorder treatment providers, primary acute mental health providers and other specialty providers across the country.

To learn more, visit


Cardiologist appointed UTMC chief of staff

Understanding patients’ health needs and placing them at the center of their care is what the medical staff at The University of Toledo Medical Center does. As the newly appointed chief of staff for UTMC, cardiologist Dr. Samer Khouri is continuing the work of the medical staff that aims to support and promote safe, high-quality patient care.

Dr. Samer Khoury, Cardiologist UTMC Chief of Staff

“The medical staff at the UT Medical Center is made up of a group of highly skilled and talented individuals who are dedicated to their patients and the service they provide,” Khouri said. “In order to provide this top level of patient care, I believe that open and direct communication needs to happen between the medical staff and leadership, and vice versa, so needs and goals are known and met.”

Khouri, who began his chief of staff appointment July 1, has been a member of the medical staff at UT since 2002. He is the Adela and Alfred Mundt Endowed Professor of Medicine, associate chair of medicine for quality and associate chief of cardiovascular medicine.

Board-certified in cardiology and heart failure, Khouri is a 1992 graduate of Damascus University. He was a research assistant at Krannert Institute of Cardiology at Indiana University, and finished his internal medicine residency at Indiana University in 1998. He completed his fellowship at Ohio State University in 2002 and earned his MBA from UT in 2016.

During his tenure at UT, Khouri has led the non-invasive cardiology labs and helped develop the heart failure and left ventricle assist device (LVAD) programs at UTMC. He is a member of the board of directors of the University of Toledo Physicians practice, and is a member of the board of directors of the American College of Cardiology, Ohio chapter. Khouri also is a member of the Med Executive Committee of the Rehabilitation Hospital of Northwest Ohio, Earnest Health.

Khouri is a member of the American College of Cardiology, American Society of Echocardiography, Heart Failure Society of America and American Association of Physician Leadership.

UT honors three for contributions to emergency medicine

The University of Toledo will recognize three local individuals for their work and dedication to the field of emergency medicine in the seventh annual Emergency Medicine Wall of Honor Induction Ceremony.

A reception will start at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3 in the Jacobs Interprofessional Immersive Simulation Center on the UT Health Science Campus. The program begins at noon with a welcome from UT President Sharon L. Gaber followed by remarks from Dr. Christopher Cooper, executive vice president for clinical affairs and dean of the College of Medicine and Life Sciences, and Dr. Kristopher Brickman, professor and chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine.

“This ceremony celebrates individuals who have demonstrated a passion for the field and epitomize what emergency medicine is all about,” Brickman said. “Through their leadership and commitment, each has helped advance the field to the next level.”

The Emergency Medicine Wall of Honor, made possible through funding from IPI Insta-Plak, Inc. and The Blade, was established in 2011 to celebrate the achievements of those who committed to service within the emergency medicine community.

Each year, nominations are submitted by a committee of community stakeholders and reviewed by a multidisciplinary selection committee.

This year’s honorees are:

Dr. Todd Brookens, emergency medicine physician. Considered a favorite among hospital staff at ProMedica Toledo Hospital for his approachability, enthusiasm to teach and outgoing nature, Brookens earned his Doctorate of Medicine at Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences and completed his internship and residency in emergency medicine at Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo. The emergency department physician also is the associate medical director of the ProMedica Transportation Network and medical director for many EMS agencies in the northwest Ohio region,

Marja Soikkeli-Dooner, registered nurse. Soikkeli-Dooner developed extensive experience in nursing and administration throughout her career at Mercy St. Vincent and ProMedica Toledo hospitals, where she was director of emergency services. Prior to her retirement, Marja served as the vice president and chief nursing officer at ProMedica Wildwood Orthopaedic
and Spine Hospital. She earned her associate’s degree in nursing from Pen Valley Community College in Kansas City, Mo., followed by a bachelor’s degree in nursing and a master’s in liberal studies at UT. She is regarded as an “exceptional” mentor who has helped mold many of the great leaders in emergency medicine.

Heidi Hess, emergency medical technician. Hess served 22 years in the Springfield Township Fire Department, before retiring as captain of the EMS department in 2014. She began her career in 1978 as an EMT-basic, and by 1981 had earned her paramedic certificate licensure. Hess played an integral role in EMS education by providing training to thousands of firefighters, EMTs, nurses and physicians throughout her career.


UT College of Medicine students to receive white coats at ceremony

The University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences will recognize first-year medical students during its official White Coat Ceremony 10 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 3 in Nitschke Hall Auditorium.

The ceremony, held during the week of orientation, welcomes medical students to the college and prepares them for undertaking a medical career. Highlights of the event include a welcome from the dean of the college, a keynote address on humanism in medicine and the presentation of white coats and recitation of the Medical Student Pledge of Ethics.

Dr. Christopher Cooper, executive vice president of clinical affairs and dean of the College of Medicine and Life Sciences, will officiate the ceremony in which 175 medical students will receive their white coats. More than 75 percent of the new students are Ohio residents and about 20 percent are from northwest Ohio.

“This traditional ceremony really underscores the foundation of the medical profession for first-year medical students,” Cooper said. “The white coat serves as a symbol of their achievement of being selected to medical school. Secondly, it reiterates their commitment to professionalism, continuing education and their service to others through medical care.”

The annual ceremony will conclude orientation week for the medical students. In addition to College of Medicine and Life Sciences, UT’s College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences holds a white coat ceremony for third-year PharmD students and the UT College of Health and Human Services presents white coats to first-year physical therapy and occupational therapy doctorate students and respiratory care students in their junior year, which is the first year of their professional program.

Students to share water quality research Wednesday at Lake Erie Center

Eleven undergraduate students from universities across the country spent the last nine weeks researching a variety of environmental issues at The University of Toledo Lake Erie Center and will share their findings during a poster gala on Wednesday, July 27.

The students enrolled in UT’s National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) summer program have been studying harmful algal blooms, climate change, invasive species and other water quality concerns in an effort to help combat these problems. Their work will be on display 2-4 p.m. at the Lake Erie Center, located at 6200 Bayshore Rd. in Oregon.

The scientific research program is open to undergraduate students in the fields of environmental sciences, biology, engineering, chemistry, geography or geographic information systems (GIS) from across the United States. Students are partnered with scientists, engineers, graduate students and agency professionals to conduct cutting-edge research on important land-lake environmental challenges.

In addition to visiting wetlands and lake sampling, students learn to use and apply top technology, including sensor networks, water quality, environmental DNA, next-gen sequencing and drones to their research.

Northwest Ohio students to experience medical school at CampMed

Teenagers today and potential physicians tomorrow will learn the tools of the trade and practice their clinical skills at the 20th annual CampMed program at The University of Toledo.

The two-day CampMed program will be held Thursday, June 15 and Friday, June 16 on the UT Health Science Campus.

The 2017 class has 39 incoming freshman high school students from across northwest Ohio who will get a sampling of medical school participating in hands-on lessons such as learning to dress for the operating room and suturing wounds.

“It’s imperative to reach out to young people early to nurture their interests in science and discovery. Their dreams for the future, which for some might include becoming a doctor, are attainable and we want to show them there are people who want to help,” said Courtney K. Combs, director of the UT and Ohio Area Health Education Center (AHEC) programs.

“CampMed gives students the opportunity to learn first-hand what it’s like to be in the medical field before they even start high school. The participants really enjoy learning from current students in the UT College of Medicine and Life Sciences.”

CampMed is a scholarship program at no cost to the students, most of whom are first-generation college students and other underrepresented groups. The camp is sponsored by the UT AHEC program, which along with other programs throughout the country, strives to improve the health of individuals and communities by developing the healthcare workforce. First- and second-year UT medical students serve as camp counselors and the students also will interact with physicians and professors.

The students begin Thursday morning after the welcoming ceremonies with a Tools of the Trade session where they learn to use medical instruments such as blood pressure cuffs and stethoscopes. Lessons continue for two days with opportunities to tour a gross anatomy lab, make a cast and more.



9:30 a.m. Tools of the Trade in Collier Building Room 1200


1 p.m. Suture Workshop in Health Education Building Room 103

CampMed, which began in 1998, is a competitive program that requires students to submit a letter of recommendation, a nomination from a science or math teacher or counselor and a personal essay to be chosen to participate.

UTMC to celebrate cancer survivors with reception June 8

In honor of June being National Cancer Survivor Month, the Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center at The University of Toledo is honoring cancer survivors with a celebration reception on Thursday, June 8.

Registration begins at 5:30 p.m., and the free program starts at 6:10 p.m. Each cancer survivor can bring a guest.

“Every year of survivorship is a reason for joy,” said Renee Schick, manager of the UTMC Survivor Shop and cancer survivor. “We believe it is important to celebrate all cancer survivors and their unique experiences, as well as provide continued support and connect them to community resources available as they continue their journey.”

The celebration will bring together survivors to share their stories and introduce various community services and organizations. The event features door prizes and music. Food and beverages will be served.

Guests will also have the opportunity to have their photo taken with Porshia, UTMC’s therapy dog.

Register by calling 419.383.5243 or email

UT College of Medicine and Life Sciences to host Commencement May 26

Internationally renowned minimally invasive surgeon Dr. Mehran Anvari will serve as the commencement speaker for The University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences graduation ceremony 2 p.m. Friday, May 26 at the Stranahan Theater.

There are more than 200 candidates for degrees, including 162 for a doctor of medicine degree, ten for a doctor of philosophy degree; 29 for master’s degrees; and four graduate certificates.

Anvari, one of the first surgeons in Canada to use robotics in surgery who also won a NASA award for his part in developing an automated robot used for detecting the early stages of breast cancer, will receive an honorary degree of doctor of science.

Dr. Mehran Anvari

“We are fortunate to have Dr. Anvari serve as the speaker for our upcoming commencement,” said Dr. Christopher Cooper, executive vice president for clinical affairs and dean of the College of Medicine and Life Sciences. “His impressive body of work, particularly in minimal access techniques, should serve as an example to our graduates that pushing boundaries and finding new and innovative methods to replace established practices can lead to better, more positive outcomes.”

A tenured professor and chair in minimally invasive surgery and surgical innovation at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Anvari is the founding director of the McMaster Institute for Surgical Invention, Innovation and Education, the Centre for Minimal Access Surgery and the Centre for Surgical Invention and Innovation.

“It is an honor to be invited to speak at the commencement of The University of Toledo’s College of Medicine and Life Sciences,” says Anvari. “My talk will focus on how innovation is an essential ingredient for social and economic progress and can solve the problems facing our global community. It should be a goal for all students and drive our future academic and professional endeavors.”

Anvari is a pioneer in his field. He is the founding director of the Centre for Minimal Access Surgery and scientific director and CEO of the Centre for Surgical Invention and Innovation, affiliated with McMaster University and St. Joseph Healthcare Hamilton.

In 2003, he established the world’s first telerobotic surgical service linking St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton and a community hospital.

In addition, Anvari has authored over 120 publications and has been an invited lecturer numerous times on the outcomes and evidence for the increasing use of laparoscopic esophagogastric and bowel surgery as well as on the use of robotics in surgery.