If you follow the news, to say the past year has been a tumultuous one is an understatement. But when I consider the incredible faculty, staff, and leadership who daily commit their talents to helping the School of Medicine achieve its fullest measure of excellence, and when I talk with our medical students and experience their passion and enthusiasm, I am reminded of how much hope there is for creating a brighter future together.

We at the School of Medicine have much to be grateful for this holiday, not least the support we receive from our community, donors, and alumni. In that spirit, I once again challenged the dean’s office staff to join forces to give back this holiday season. I am pleased to report that the team raised more than $2,000 to buy gifts for two families through the UAB Benevolent Fund and three children through the UAB Staff Council partnership with Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children (CASA) of Jefferson County. The funds were raised through a variety of creative fundraisers, including giving for the opportunity to wear jeans to work on Fridays in December, taco lunches, a bake sale, and more.

The Department of Medicine also pulled together to give back in the spirit of the season by sending volunteers to help YWCA Central Alabama prepare for Santa’s Workshop. This special outreach helps bring holiday cheer to families who are living in area homeless/transitional shelters or are otherwise in need. Children get to meet Santa and make gifts and crafts they can give to loved ones, while their parents and caregivers “shop” for free gifts to give to their children.

These are just two of many groups in the School that answered the call to service this holiday. I am proud of these efforts and the work we do year-round to benefit our patients, our students, and our community, and I look forward to achieving even more in 2017. Here’s wishing you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season.

Selwyn M. Vickers, M.D., FACS
Senior Vice President for Medicine and Dean
James C. Lee Endowed Chair