Thursday, January 14, 2010


Getting things done is not the same as making things happen.

You can…
…reply to email.
…pay the bills.
…cross off to-do’s.
…fulfill your obligation.
…repeat what you heard.
…go with the flow.
…anticipate roadblocks.
…aim for “good enough.”

Or you can…
…organize a community.
…take a risk.
…set ambitious goals.
…give more than you take.
…change perceptions.
…forge a new path.
…create possibility.
…demand excellence.

Don’t worry too much about getting things done.  Make things happen.

Taken from Seth Godwin's free e-book - Advice is from Gina Trapani.  She blogs about software and productivity at Smarterware. Her new book, The Complete Guide to Google Wave, is available to read online for free.

Family Medicine Resident Graduate Killed in MVA

Dr. Jean Ginst Eugene, 40, was killed on Jan. 4, 2010, after his SUV overturned on Interstate 595 in Miami, Fla.

Dr. Eugene graduated from the family medicine residency program at the University of South Alabama in August 2008.

"This is a senseless tragedy,” said Dr. Allen Perkins, professor and chair of family medicine at USA. “Jean Ginst was full of life. In addition to medicine, he enjoyed educating people about his culture and having a good time. He will be missed by those of us who knew him, as well as his patients."

Memorial contributions can be made in Dr. Eugene's honor to the University Distiguished Professor of Family Practice fund.  Donations can be mailed to the Medical Development & Alumni Relations, University of South Alabama, Technology & Research Park III, Suite 2150, Mobile, AL 36688.

Research Opportunity Fosters Physician-Scientist Career Path

Marcus Bell, after three years of medical school at the University of South Alabama, was ready to explore the ways a physician’s career could interface with basic research. A research fellowship through the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation turned his motivation into reality.

“During medical school, I was fortunate to have mentors like Dr. Errol Crook at USA and Dr. Charles Thomas from the Oregon Health and Science University to encourage me to pursue my research interests as a student,” he said.

In 2008, Bell was awarded a Doris Duke Clinical Research Fellowship. He took a year off from medical school and spent 12 months with Dr. John Minna in one of the world’s pre-eminent labs dedicated to translational cancer research.

When asked what it was like working with one of today’s most respected cancer researchers, Bell replied, “Fantastic! It was a once-in-a-lifetime chance to work with him. Dr. Minna has devoted his career to uncovering the molecular signatures of lung cancer to find better ways to destroy it. He truly has a passion for research, and he was able to create a stimulating environment that fostered my scientific curiosity.”

Dr. Minna was a distinguished cancer researcher at the National Cancer Institute before moving to the University of Texas Southwestern, where he is director of the Hamon Center for Therapeutic Oncology Research.

“I had the opportunity to conduct my research at several locations throughout the United States,” explained Bell. “I chose University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center because of the chance to work with Dr. Minna. I felt that working with him would allow me to grow as a physician and increase my chances of making an impact on the lives of many cancer patients.”

Bell’s overall research goal was to develop methods so that doctors can sample a patient’s lung cancer before treatment, perform molecular profiling and, from this information, select the best chemotherapy or targeted therapy for each individual patient.

“The project focused on the radiation response aspect of lung cancers. We are working to create genomic and proteomic signatures that could predict the response of lung cancer to radiation from biopsy samples. This in turn will help clinicians predict if a treatment will be helpful for a patient before giving treatment, and it will lead to more individualized treatment plans specific to each patient’s cancer,” Bell said.

The Doris Duke program served as a catalyst for Bell on his path to becoming a physician-scientist, cultivating his research skills, and exposing him to role models and mentors that have continued to guide the journey to understand cancer at the most basic level. “My experiences in the program fortified my choice of an academic career path,” he said.

During the year spent in Texas, Bell was able to critically evaluate his work and the work of others. He also learned how to efficiently formulate and communicate ideas through presentation of his work at local and national meetings. “Broad exposure to basic science research taught me to ask important questions and sharpened my ability to understand how to approach problems,” said Bell.

Reflecting on his research experiences, Bell said that “he discovered that a successful scientist needs excellent colleagues, mentorship and a vibrant research environment.”

Currently, Bell is completing interviews with residency programs in preparation for Match Day, which is scheduled for March 18, 2010.

Dr. Preudhomme Provides Insight on Earthquake in Haiti

USA Pediatric Gastroenterologist Dr. Daniel Preudhomme and his wife recently shared their thoughts on the earthquake in Haiti.  Dr. Preudhomme's wife was born there and they both recently visited the country conducting missionary work.  To see their interview with WKRG, follow this link -

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Past and Future of African American Physicians in Mobile

The December Med School Cafe' given by Dr. Hattie Myles is now available for viewing online.  In her talk, Dr. Myles outlined the many contributions made by African American physicians throughout Mobile’s history. She also highlighted the success of programs at the USA College of Medicine designed to encourage diversity in healthcare.  Click this link to watch - .