Deborah GrimesDeborah F. Grimes, R.N., J.D., CHC, CPHQ, will cap off a day of ‘firsts’ at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s summer commencement ceremony on Saturday, August 13, at Bartow Arena.

Grimes, who is a member of the first graduating class from the UAB School of Health Professions’ Master of Science in Healthcare Quality and Safety program, will be the graduate commencement speaker at UAB’s inaugural summer commencement ceremony.


“It is a wonderful honor and a little nerve wracking, but most of all, it is a celebration for all graduates and their families. I hope my remarks, as a 52-year-old earning her third degree, will inspire others to make a commitment to lifelong learning,” said Grimes, who is Associate Vice President Quality / Chief Compliance Officer at UAB Hospital. “I am fortunate to have worked for 30 years in an academic medical center where you are challenged and encouraged to maintain a commitment to education. Plus, what I do for a living is improve processes so it is natural for me to improve myself.”

Story by Shannon Thomason, UAB News

An occupational therapy student needed to get a patient, diagnosed with dementia, out of the bed and across the room for evaluation, but this was different from most patient-caregiver interactions at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

This patient was an advanced acting student portraying someone with dementia to test an occupational therapy student’s competence.

Students in the School of Health ProfessionsDepartment of Occupational Therapy are now getting real-world experience with a new cross-professional program that uses students from the College of Arts and SciencesDepartment of Theatre as patients.

Theater students get to test their chops in acting out a diagnosis before auditioning for a character role with medical issues, and OT students get to work with “real” patients before they begin their field study.

collage bham peopleCourtesy: Birmingham Business JournalThe Birmingham Business Journal’s Most Influential Executives list, “a compilation of powerbrokers, CEOs and thought leaders,” includes three from the UAB School of Health Professions.

Neeysa Biddle, St. Vincent’s Health System

Biddle, who has a B.S. in Admin Health Systems, a B.S. in Allied Health (currently Health Care Management) and an M.S. in Health Administration (MSHA Class 26), is president and CEO of St. Vincent’s Health System. When the School celebrated its 40th anniversary, Biddle was named to the SHP Fab 40 Alumni honoring the School’s Top 40 alumni. She was recently honored as a Woman of Distinction by the Girl Scouts of North-Central Alabama and also earned a spot on the BBJ’s “Who’s Who in Health Care” list.

Dunrey LaRose OTSDunrey LaRose, OTS, presenting research posterDunrey LaRose, a second-year student in the Master of Science in Occupational Therapy program in the School of Health Professions, is the first UAB OT student to receive a scholarship from the American Occupational Therapy Foundation.

She is one of only two students in the United States awarded the Martha Kirkland Pi Theta Epsilon Endowed Scholarship. The award is given annually to OT students that demonstrate leadership potential and aspire to roles in education, practice or research.

Javeen ThomasJaveen Thomas, ACHE Dent ScholarUniversity of Alabama at Birmingham School of Health Professions student Javeen Thomas has been named a winner of the Albert W. Dent Graduate Student Scholarship by the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE).

Thomas, a student in the Master of Science in Health Administration program, is one of only six students across the United States to win the $5,000 award that is delivered annually to minority students.

“The process of taking out enough loans to cover room, books, and any other major expenses has been my approach throughout my academic career and this scholarship will allow me to start out my final year of course work in the MSHA program by not taking the large amount that was necessary for me to,” said Thomas.

Three graduates and one postdoctoral scholar of the UAB School of Health Professions have been named “Rising Stars in Health Care” by the Birmingham Business Journal.

Ashley Cannon, a graduate of the Genetic Counseling program; Tashauna Goldsby, a postdoctoral scholar in the Nutrition Obesity Research Center and the UAB Obesity Training program; Lee Hammonds, a graduate of the Master of Science in Health Administration, Class 43; and Uma Srivastava, an alumna of the Biotechology program, were each recognized by the local newsmaker.

Excellence in Business webExcellence in Business winners: Kayce Dover, Kerri Bailey, Courtney Duff-Harrison and Elizabeth Klein (accepting for Dale Yake)The School of Health Professions had four alumni named UAB Excellence in Business winners for 2016. This year's SHP winners are: Kerri Bailey, Kayce Dover, Courtney Duff-Harrison and Dale Yake.

Kerri Bailey, B.S. in Occupational Therapy

Bailey is co-founder and managing partner of Child'sPlay Therapy Center. It is a multi-disciplinary pediatric therapy clinic co-owned by Bailey, an occupational therapist, and Deborah Boswell, a speech therapist. Child'sPlay provides occupational, physical and speech therapy services to children from birth through teens. In addition, the company offers a variety of special programs including Focal Point (treatment for ADD/ADHD), Orton-Gillingham reading therapy, and a variety of summer camps and social skills groups.

Michelle Brown receiving 2014 SHP Excellence in Teaching AwardMichelle Brown receiving 2014 SHP Excellence in Teaching AwardMichelle Brown, MS, MLS(ASCP)SBB, an assistant professor in the School of Health ProfessionsClinical and Laboratory Science program, has been selected to receive the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

The annual honor recognizes those who demonstrated exceptional accomplishments in teaching. The announcement of the 11 winners across UAB had this to say about Brown:

“Brown regularly teaches across disciplines and schools, and she challenges students to sharpen their problem-solving and clinical decision-making skills through rigorous laboratory and simulation situations.”

RS9632 Fred Bertrand 2014 2 scrTed Bertrand, Ph.D., named assistant dean for Undergraduate ResearchThe UAB School of Health Professions has named Ted Bertrand, Ph.D., assistant dean for Undergraduate Research. Bertrand, an associate professor with a primary appointment in the Department of Clinical and Diagnostic Sciences and a research appointment in the Department of Nutrition Sciences, is charged with creating research experiences that will engage many of the 800+ undergraduate students in the School.

 “Often people think research is only ‘lab’ or ‘bench’ but, any activity that leads to generating and disseminating new knowledge is research,” said Bertrand who provides instruction in the undergraduate Biomedical Sciences program. “With that in mind, we build on our current successes by developing even stronger student focused undergraduate research experiences.”