Kelly Coates, Dr. Emily Tong and Dr. Owen MurrayCongratulations to Dr. Emily Tong for successfully completing her one-year Pharmacy Practice Residency with the UTMB CMC Department of Pharmacy. Tong is originally from California and said during her residency that she is a “West Coast” girl but in the end she fell in love with Texas and has accepted a clinical position in nearby Kingwood, Texas with Health Spring. The PGY1 Pharmacy Practice Residency was established in 1993 and has been accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists association since 1994. Dr. Tong is the 14th resident to complete the residency. 

The department is proud of the residency program and four pharmacists on staff are graduates including Stephanie Zepeda, pharmacy director, Janet Gonzalez, assistant director, Melanie Roberts, pharmacy clinical practice specialist, and Melissa Johnson, senior pharmacist. We thank all our staff and preceptors for their participation in making our residency program such a success in developing future clinicians and leaders in the pharmacy profession.  Our next resident from Florida A&M University, Samantha Delgado, begins the program on July 1, 2013! 

Dr. Susan McCammon, assistant professor of otolaryngology, has been named the chair-elect of the Ethics committee for the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Hand and Neck Surgery Foundation. The Academy is the group’s primary professional society, representing approximately 12,000 surgeons. McCammon is co-director of the Center for Cancers of the Head and Neck and director of residency for head and neck surgery.



UTMB School of Nursing students Jacob Romero and Chukwudi Edeh have been awarded academic scholarships from the Healthcare and Nursing Education Foundation. The foundation, established in 1994, strives to make a critical difference in the health of the community by providing nursing scholarships and community grants. The 25 scholarships awarded this year are determined according to academics, leadership ability, community involvement, financial need and commitment to pursuing a professional nursing career in this region.

Heather Pritchard, an employee in Information Services and department blood drive coordinator, has been supporting the UTMB Blood Center by hosting blood drives for more than 10 years. She coordinates two different sites for the IS blood drives, which are scheduled every eight weeks, at the Clear Lake Center on I45 & NASA Rd. 1 and at Rebecca Sealy. 

"I really enjoy a friendly competition when it comes to organizing blood drives," Pritchard said. "Competition gets the donors excited about donating blood. It’s all about making it fun."

Pritchard recognized the need for blood and the importance of planning ahead to keeping blood on the shelf when a fellow coworker became a victim of a violent crime and needed blood products, and a relative of hers was hurt in an explosion and required numerous blood transfusions.

"Heather has been one of the most supportive on-campus blood drive coordinators and helped to “kick start” our on- campus donations following Hurricane Ike," said Administrative Manager of Donor Services, Christi Hopkins.  "She has been an enthusiastic supporter for many years.  We are very appreciative of her continued help and support of the blood donor program."

Heather resides in League City with her husband, Josh and her two children Erin, 12 and Alex, 4. She said that she hopes to raise her children to be future blood donors. 

Dr. Wlodek Bujalowski has been awarded a four-year, $1.2 million grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. He is the principal investigator for the research on “Functional dynamics of mammalian and viral DNA repair polymerases.” This grant will help continue a project that has been ongoing for 14 years and will allow further study on the role of DNA damage in cancer and human genetic diseases. Bujalowski serves as a professor in the departments of biochemistry and molecular biology and obstetrics and gynecology, as well as the Sealy Centers for Structural Biology and Cancer Cell Biology.