Wednesday, April 13, 2016

April 21 DSS to Feature Dr. Kevin Macaluso

Next week's Distinguished Scientist Seminar at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine will feature Dr. Kevin Macaluso, professor of pathobiological sciences at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, La.

The lecture, titled “Unraveling the Biology of Emerging Rickettsial Pathogens," will take place April 21, 2016, at 4 p.m. in the first floor auditorium of the Medical Sciences Building on USA’s main campus.

Dr. Macaluso earned his master's degree in biology from Sul Ross State University in Alpine, Texas, and his Ph.D. in entomology from Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla. He completed a National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellowship in the department of microbiology and immunology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, Md.

Dr. Macaluso’s areas of interest include vector-borne disease, entomology and parasitology. Learn more about Dr. Macaluso here.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

USA Libraries Hosting Book Drive for USA Children's Medical Center

Cheyenne Gray and her mother talk with USA pediatrician Dr. Cindy Sheets about the book Cheyenne picked out at the USA Children's Medical Center. Through the Reach Out and Read program, the USA Children's Medical Center has been promoting early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms by giving books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud.
In celebration of National Library Week, the University of South Alabama Libraries are once again collecting books for children and teens to donate to USA Children's Medical Center, a pediatric outpatient clinic located in midtown Mobile. Books collected during the drive will be used to support the pediatric clinic's Reach Out and Read program.

New and gently used books for children or teens can be donated at the Marx Library, Baugh Biomedical Library, or UMC Health Information Resource Center on the 3rd floor of USA Medical Center from April 11-18, 2016.

Reach Out and Read is a national non-profit organization that encourages early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide by giving books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading.

“Multiple studies have shown that the possession of books, plus being read aloud to at an early age greatly improves a child's vocabulary and preschool readiness,” said USA pediatrician Dr. Cindy Sheets. “Gently used books are wonderful, and we could use books in any language, especially Spanish and Arabic.”

In addition to the Reach Out and Read guidelines of providing books to children at well visits from 2 months to 5 years of age, USA Children’s Medical Center also provides books to children at sick visits.

If you have any questions or if you would like to schedule a pick-up, contact Andrea Wright at or 251-461-1424.

Monday, April 11, 2016

2016 Gumbo Chili Showdown a Success

First-year medical student Mariah Sankey of the "2 Live Stew Crew" gives out samples of their gumbo at the USA College of Medicine's Gumbo Chili Showdown April 2, 2016.
The 2016 Gumbo Chili Showdown was held April 2, 2016, preceding the University of South Alabama Jaguars Spring Game at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. More than 400 people came to the event to enjoy gumbo and chili prepared by 15 competing teams.

The teams' gumbo and chili were judged on taste, aroma, consistency, aftertaste and originality. All categories, with the exception of the People’s Choice Award, were judged by Dr. Daniel Preud’Homme, director of the Pediatric Healthy Life Center and professor of pediatrics at USA; Shelby Mitchell of 95 KSJ; Mary Booth of Lite Mix 99.9; and USA Football Assistant Coach Jeff Bailey.

Winners of this year's event were:

Best Overall and Best Chili
“Netflix and Chili"
Members of the Student National Medical Association

Best Gumbo
“The Gumbologists”
Members of the USA College of Medicine Class of 2019

People's Choice
“Roux Dat”
Members of the USA College of Medicine Class of 2018

Second Place Chili
"Alpha Omicron Pi"
USA Alpha Omicron Pi Panhellenic sorority

Second Place Gumbo
“Make Gumbo Great Again"
Members of the USA College of Medicine Class of 2019

The Gumbo Chili Showdown supports a scholarship at the USA College of Medicine created in memory of Regan Robinson, a medical student at USA who lost her battle with colon cancer before graduating. The scholarship provides assistance to a rising senior medical student who embodies Regan’s spirit and character. This year the event raised more than $12,000 for the Regan Robinson Young Scholarship.

“The event was a huge success due to the tremendous turnout and sponsors," said Alex Wiles, a second-year medical student at USA and this year's Gumbo Chili Showdown co-chairman. "The Gumbo Chili Showdown has not been held since 2013, so we as students are very proud that the Showdown is back. We would like to thank all of our sponsors, including our title sponsor, the USA Medical Alumni Association. We would also like to thank USA’s Student Government Association for their Senate Project sponsorship and all of the volunteers from Alpha Epsilon Delta. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the USA Spring football game and can’t wait until next year’s Showdown.”

Click here to view more photos from the event. Local news coverage of the event can be found here.

Donations to the Regan Robinson Young Scholarship fund can be directed to the University of South Alabama Office of Medical Development, attention Gumbo Chili Showdown USA College of Medicine, 5851 USA Drive North, MSB 2015, Mobile, AL 36688.