Eleven students from the UAB School of Health Professions were honored at the 39th annual Honors Convocation Program. The ceremony, held in the Alys Robinson Stephens Performing Arts Center, recognizes UAB's most outstanding students. Each year the convocation celebrates those who have won prestigious national honors, including fellowships and scholarships, university school awards and student service awards. Those honored in the School of Health Professions are:

School of Health Professions Dean’s Award
  • Leah Ivy Ricks, Physician Assistant program
Department of Clinical and Diagnostic Sciences
  • Ashley Mariano Outstanding Genetic Counseling Graduate Student
  • Leah Ivy Ricks Outstanding Physician Assistant Graduate Student
  • Cardarius Smoot Outstanding Medical Lab Sciences Graduate Student
  • Shae Lesueur Outstanding Medical Technology Undergraduate Student
  • Leslie Williams Outstanding Respiratory Therapy Undergraduate Student
  • Michael L. Tran Mallinckrodt Outstanding Nuclear Medicine Technology Undergraduate Student
Department of Health Services Administration
  • Christie L. Fowlkes The Thompson T. Abercrombie Distinguished Graduate/Undergraduate Clinical Manager
  • Megan Renee Battles Outstanding Health Care Management Undergraduate Student
Department of Physical Therapy
  • Allison Schmidt Outstanding Graduate Student
Department of Occupational Therapy
  • Swetal Thaker Outstanding Graduate Student
Dance 4 Downs 053rd annual Dance 4 DownsStudents from the UAB School of Health Professions Respiratory Therapy and Genetic Counseling programs teamed up with Samford University and Down Syndrome Alabama to deliver the 3rd annual “Dance 4 Downs” fundraising event. Nearly 450 people joined members of the Birmingham special needs community to dance the night away on Saturday, April 3, 2014. The annual event supports the UAB Adult Down Syndrome Clinic and Down Syndrome Alabama.

This is the first year that UAB students have assisted with the event.

“It is a learning experience for both programs,” explains Amy Atkinson, a first-year student in UAB’s Respiratory Therapy program. “Down syndrome is a genetic issue, and children with Down syndrome are at an increased risk for a wide range of medical problems, from respiratory-related issues to gastrointestinal disorders. This dance is helping college students interact with individuals with special needs, individuals that could one day be patients of ours.”

RT Lovell Palmer Williams webL/R: Kit Lovell, Leslie Williams, Gentry PalmerA group of undergraduates at the University of Alabama at Birmingham spent “Kick Butts Day” doing just that with a group of local middle school students.

Kit Lovell, Gentry Palmer and Leslie Williams, students in the UAB School of Health Professions Respiratory Therapy program, visited Pizitz Middle School in Vestavia Hills, Ala., to teach more than 350 seventh grade students about lung health and tobacco risks. They also debunked myths about e-cigarettes.

“This is going to become a hot topic in the near future and a lot of people I know have resorted to the e-cigarettes despite knowing nothing about them,” said Lovell, who is expected to graduate UAB later this month. “As a former smoker, I know how hard of a habit it is to kick and prevention should be the main focus because so many people can't quit or have smoked too long to make any significant improvement in their condition.”

RD Day Capitol 20142014 Registered Dietitian Day in AlabamaThe University of Alabama at Birmingham Dietetic Internship program attended Registered Dietitian Day at the Alabama State House in Montgomery on Wednesday, March 19, 2014. The event was coordinated with the Alabama Dietetic Association.

Pictured L/R: Susan Scott, ALDA Public Policy Coordinator; Dana Herazo, ALDA President; Governor Robert Bentley; Susan Miller, director, UAB DI Program and ALDA State Policy Representative; and Mary Martin-Nordness, ALDA President-Elect.

Ron Kleinman webRon Kleinman, PT, UAB Excellence in Business, Class of 2014When Ron Kleinman, PT, was looking for a college to attend he wrote, that’s correct - he physically wrote, to the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and asked for a list of the best Physical Therapy schools in the United States. The APTA wrote back and placed the University of Alabama at Birmingham at the top of the list and Kleinman was soon on his way south from Ohio.

Fast forward a little more than 30 years and Kleinman is once again heading south to UAB from Ohio. This time around, he returns to the magazine as a member of the UAB Excellence in Business Top 25 Awards, Class of 2014.

“The thing that UAB instilled in me was the importance of establishing a good relationship with my patients,” said Kleinman, a 1982 graduate of the UAB Department of Physical Therapy. “They emphasized treating everyone equally, providing care without prejudice and putting the patient’s needs ahead of my own.”

Jan JacksJan Jacks, UAB Excellence in Business, Class of 2014University of Alabama at Birmingham alumna Jan Jacks is an artist. Her works are vivid and rich and she uses oils and fingers to create masterpieces that are devoured over and over again by the public.

However, Jacks is not your traditional artist. She is the owner, baker and artist behind Dreamcakes Bakery located in Homewood, Ala.

“From a very young age I had a creative passion for art and baking and an obsession to please people with ‘sugar art,’” said Jacks, who earned a Dietetic Technician certificate from the UAB School of Health Professions (then known as the School of Allied Health). “I am still obsessed to this day and my greatest joy is to be able to be a part of celebrating life with people and we get to do that everyday at Dreamcakes.”

MSHA Classic Acura 20132013 MSHA Classic winning team at PinehurstThe University of Alabama at Birmingham Master of Science in Health Administration program announces Glenwood Autism & Behavioral Health Center as the beneficiary of the 9th annual MSHA Golf Classic. The fundraising event, whose main purpose is to provide a scholarship fund for students attending professional development conferences, includes a four-person scramble, a silent auction and a first place prize of championship golf at Pinehurst Resort, host of the 2014 U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open Championships.

The UAB School of Health Professions held the annual Faculty and Staff Awards Luncheon on Friday, Feb. 28, 2014, at the UAB Alumni House. The winners were:

Nagy Volker AwardDean Harold Jones, Tim Nagy, Jose FernandezTim Nagy, Ph.D.: The Joseph F. Volker Award for the regular, full-time faculty member who has demonstrated excellence in and dedication to teaching, distinctive research and other scholarly endeavors, and/or notable service to the School, University and community.

James Rimmer, Ph.D.: The Excellence in Scholarship Award for the faculty member has made significant scholarly contributions resulting in the advancement of knowledge. Contributions include funded research, involvement in research process, publications in peer reviewed journals and more.

Kathy Nugent, Ph.D.: The Excellence in Service Award for faculty member who has made significant contributions to the School or their profession including projects and positions that bring national, state or local recognition and more.

Battles Smith AwardDean Harold Jones, Marcie Battles, Elizabeth HendrixJohn Lowman, Ph.D.: The Excellence in Teaching Award for faculty member who exhibited success in developing effective teaching methods, courses and teaching materials that generate student learning, critical thinking, problem solving, collaboration and research.

Marcie Battles: The Beverly W. Smith Outstanding Employee Award for a non-faculty employee who excels in numerous areas such as professionalism, attitude, productivity, efficiency, creativity, communication and competence.

Visit our Flickr page (http://www.flickr.com/photos/uab_shp/sets/) to see all the photos from the day.
Susan PackaSusan Packa. 2014 UAB Outstanding Advising Award - Primary RoleSusan Packa was recently awarded the 2014 UAB Outstanding Advising Award - Primary Role. Packa, academic advisor for the Health Care Management and Health Information Management programs, is the first advisor from the UAB School of Health Professions to win the coveted Primary Role honor.

In a recommendation letter, one UAB student said, "I can honestly say that without Ms. Packa's strong words of encouragement and hands of resilient guidance, I would not be the successful college student that I am today."

"Ms. Packa and I built a strong relationship through working together and I know she truly cares about my academics, future careers, and personal life," said another student in their recommendation letter. "I could not have accomplished taking undergrad health care management classes and graduate level occupational therapy classes at the same time, without Ms. Packa's support and advice."

Packa will represent UAB in the NACADA (National Academic Advising Association) Outstanding Academic Advising - Primary Role competition. She will be assessed for student success rate, interpersonal skills, supporting NACADA's core values and more. The national awards will be announced later this year.