Thursday, April 6, 2017

Dr. Hattie Myles Honored with Retirement Reception

The University of South Alabama College of Medicine hosted a retirement reception honoring Dr. Hattie Myles, assistant dean for student affairs and educational enrichment at the USA College of Medicine, on March 31, 2017.

Dr. Myles joined the USA College of Medicine in 1992 and has made significant contributions to higher education and the community, particularly in the area of diversity and inclusion. She has been involved with the USA College of Medicine in numerous capacities, serving as minority outreach officer and co-director of the community engagement core of the USA College of Medicine Center of Excellence.

View more photos from Dr. Myles' retirement reception here

Autism Matters Conference Set for May 5

The Autism Society of Alabama, in partnership with the University of South Alabama Regional Autism Network, will host the second annual Autism Matters Conference on Friday, May 5, 2017, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Goodwill Easter Seals Mitchell Auditorium in Mobile, Ala.

This program is designed as an interdisciplinary conference for parents, caregivers and service providers. The conference is open to all interested in increasing knowledge, addressing outreach and improving outcomes in adults with autism. Certificates of attendance will be provided for training programs.

Conference speakers include Nancy Anderson, associate director of the Alabama Disabilities Advocacy Program; Brooke Bowles, founder and executive director of Triumph Services, Inc.; Anna McConnell, LCSW, MPH, Autism Society of Alabama Community outreach coordinator; and Dr. Kim Zlomke, licensed clinical psychologist and a board-certified behavior analyst.

The USA Regional Autism Network (RAN), which serves Mobile, Baldwin, Washington, Clarke, Monroe, Conecuh and Escambia Counties, joined the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Auburn University to make up the Alabama Regional Autism Network. The network was created to empower those who have autism spectrum disorders, as well as their families and care providers

Advanced conference registration is requested. For more information and to register, click here.

Dr. Dean Naritoku Hosts Southern Epilepsy and EEG Society Annual Meeting

Dr. Dean Naritoku, professor and chair of neurology at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine and president of the Southern Epilepsy and EEG Society (SEEEG), hosted the SEEEG annual meeting during Mardi Gras weekend at the Riverview Renaissance Plaza Hotel in Mobile.

The multi-day meeting provided a platform for physicians and scientists to exchange new ideas and information related to the field of epilepsy. “We are the only remaining regional society for epilepsy, and our small size allows us to focus on very specific topics in detail,” Dr. Naritoku said. “That cannot be done at a huge meeting.” The meeting was limited to 100 attendees, which fostered small-group discussion and feedback during the sessions.

The event featured 16 speakers who discussed several leading-edge topics on the pathophysiology and treatment of epilepsy. Dr. Naritoku presented “Does Rational Polytherapy Exist?” and Dr. Olivier Darbin, assistant professor of neurology at the USA College of Medicine, presented “The Basis and Rationale for using Nonlinear Signal Analysis for Brain Function.”

As president, Dr. Naritoku is responsible for organizing the meeting, moderating the programs and establishing the programming for the SEEEG annual meeting. “The Southern Epilepsy and EEG Society features venues in the Southeast,” Dr. Naritoku said. “Since we have never had any major epilepsy meetings here in the past, I thought it was a good opportunity to showcase how great Mobile is and the unique experience of Mardi Gras.”

Founded in 1948 as the Southern EEG Society, the Southern Epilepsy and EEG Society is a scientific and educational association with members throughout the Southern and greater United States and is open to physicians and scientists from all areas. The SEEEG is dedicated to advancing the fields of epilepsy and EEG in order to provide quality care to the public, increase physician knowledge of epilepsy, and improve patient care.

For more information about the Southern Epilepsy and EEG Society, click here.

To view more photos from the event, click here.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

First-Year Medical Students Make a Difference as Big Brothers and Big Sisters of South Alabama

USA College of Medicine first-year medical students mentor children at Forest Hill Elementary School on March 10, 2017, in Mobile, Ala.
First-year medical students serving as volunteers for Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Alabama (BBBSSA) recently visited Forest Hill Elementary School in Mobile to mentor their Little Brothers and Sisters.

The students have each been assigned Little Brothers and Sisters and regularly make visits to the school to spend time with those they are mentoring. “I visit my Little every Friday afternoon, which gives us an hour to hang out and spend time together, sometimes playing basketball in the gym or visiting the library,” said first-year medical student and Big Brother Josh Ousley. “The time I spend with him hopefully builds a trusting relationship so that he can confide in me during tough times.”

By spending time in the community, the medical students are reminded of the benefits of serving those in need. Malik McMullin, first-year medical student and Big Brother, said that the connection he is making with his Little Brother encourages an interest in math and science, plus an early interest in pursuing a college degree. “Volunteering is important because it helps us remember that we are servants first,” McMullin said. “These are our future neighbors, patients and co-workers, and we want to see them succeed.”

Volunteering with BBBSSA has given the medical students confirmation that a lifetime in the medical field is the right choice for them. “Volunteering with my Little reminds me why I want to pursue a career in pediatrics,” McMullin said. Jazmin Scott, first-year medical student and Big Sister, added, “I think that it is incredibly important that we put time and energy into today’s children so that they can have a bright future.”

The BBBSSA students plan to continue their service to the community throughout their medical school careers. Maria Siow, a first-year medical student and Big Sister, said that she plans to continue her work with her Little Sister while also working with the Student-Run Free Clinic. “It’s important for me to continue to connect with the community,” she said.

Students are strongly encouraged to get involved with BBBSSA. “I wish I had gotten involved in the program sooner while earning my undergraduate degree,” said Scott. “I think volunteering gives medical students a tangible way to make a difference in our community.”

Learn more about BBBSSA here.