Thursday, July 21, 2011

Incoming Freshmen Prepare For Medical School

Brent Griffin (left) and Andrew Henderson (right) stand next to a collection of previous class composites in the Medical Sciences Building on USA's main campus. Both Griffin and Henderson are recipients of the Dean's Scholarship, given to five incoming medical students at the USA College of Medicine.
With freshman orientation for new incoming USA College of Medicine students just weeks away, the selection process for students comes to an end as the class roster is finalized.

Incoming freshmen Brent Griffin and Andrew Henderson were recently awarded the USA College of Medicine Dean’s Scholarship.

Brent Griffin was enrolled in the Early Decision Program with the USA College of Medicine Admissions, therefore, he knew from the beginning of applying to medical school that he wanted to attend USA.

“Receiving the Dean’s Scholarship was truly a surprise and honor,” Griffin said. “I spent two years as a post graduate studying emergency medical services at USA. After talking with medical students and teachers at USA, I knew this medical school would be a great match for me.”

Griffin, 25, received his undergraduate degree in psychology from the American Military University. Originally from Boone, N.C., Griffin spent five years in the U.S. Navy and traveled to Japan.

“Halfway through Navy enlistment in Japan as a Master at Arms, or military police, I spent time with a Navy doctor,” Griffin said. “I became so intrigued as to how science can be used clinically and academically to treat patients.”

Griffin is currently a paramedic working in Clarke and Washington counties of Alabama. He spent the past two years as an EMT.

Griffin is the first in his family to enter the medical field.

“Right now I have my eye set on becoming a pediatric physician,” Griffin said. “I would love to practice medicine in a rural, small-town community.”

Andrew Henderson, 22, from Mobile, Ala., has always been surrounded by health professionals growing up. “My dad has been a dentist in Mobile for about 30 years, and my mom has been in pharmaceuticals for about the same amount of time.”

However, Henderson wants to become a doctor for a more specific reason – the love of science. While away at Auburn receiving his undergraduate degree in biomedical sciences, Henderson began to appreciate the great opportunities that USA’s medical school had to offer.

“I have always appreciated the health care field,” Henderson said. “While studying biomedical sciences at Auburn, I realized that the actual science behind treating patients is most interesting to me.”

Getting away from Mobile for four years at Auburn helped reaffirm that Henderson wanted to attend medical school at USA.

“Being removed from Mobile while in Auburn, I heard from my friends and classmates at Auburn that USA really is a good medical school,” Henderson said. “Not only that, but also how the admissions staff and the interviewees were so down to earth. Being able to visit the hospitals, hear about the smaller class sizes from students and see how hands-on the students are, really made my decision to come to USA an easy one.”

For Henderson, receiving the Dean’s Scholarship was icing on the cake.

“I had already decided on USA before I received the scholarship,” Henderson said. “It really came down to figuring out how I was going to finance housing and moving. Receiving the Dean’s Scholarship is definitely an honor and I feel very fortunate.”

Griffin and Henderson were two of five students awarded Dean's Scholarships.

RSVP Today - July Med School Café

The July Med School Café lecture will feature Ruth Kennedy, C.R.N.P., clinical nurse practitioner in the department of obstetrics and gynecology, division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility, at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine.

Her lecture, titled “Overcoming Obstacles in Fertility,” will take place July 28, 2011, at the Via! Health, Fitness & Enrichment Center in Mobile. Lunch will be served at 11:30 a.m., and the presentation begins at noon.

During the talk, Kennedy will discuss infertility issues that relate to both men and women. According to Kennedy, about one-third of infertility cases are female-related issues, while another one-third of infertility cases show that men have a fertility issue. The final one-third of infertility cases are a combination of both male and female issues.

Kennedy will also explain the advanced reproductive technology (ART) procedures that are available at the USA Center for Women’s Health for treating infertility.

The Via! Health, Fitness & Enrichment Center is located at 1717 Dauphin St. in Mobile. To view a map, visit

The Med School Café lecture and lunch are provided free of charge, but reservations are required. For more information or to make reservations, please call Kim Partridge at (251) 460-7770 or e-mail

Med School Café is a free community lecture series sponsored by the USA Physicians Group. Each month, faculty from the USA College of Medicine share their expertise on a specific medical condition, providing insight on the latest treatment available.

Value of USA Health System Presented

Becky Tate, chief executive officer of the University of South Alabama Health Services Foundation, gave an overview of the USA Health System to more than 85 attendees at the DePaul Center at Providence Hosptial on July 20.

The presentation given at the local Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) meeting included information on the USA Health System and the benefit it provides to the community from several different standpoints -- health care delivery, economics, and workforce development.

To view the full presentation, click here.

Becky Tate, chief executive officer of the USA Health Services Foundation, presents an overview of the USA Health System to attendees at Providence Hospital.

Becky Tate (left), chief executive officer of the USA Health Services Foundation, with Beverly Kellen, president of the local MGMA Chapter and practice director for family medicine and student health at USA

USA Lions Club Supports Diabetic Camp

Members of the USA Lions Club, from left to right: Dr. Robert Lausch, Tommie Carlisle, Dr. Stephen Kayes, and Dr. Jim Parker
The University of South Alabama Lions Club recently helped sponsor the Southeastern Diabetes Association's Camp Sugar Falls, located at Camp Grace in Mobile. A cookout was held July 17, 2011. Members of the USA Lions Club provided food for the event and cooked for over 240 participants and guests.

The cookout was the kickoff to a week-long educational event for young children on how to cope with diabetes on a day-to-day basis. USA pediatric endocrinologist Dr. Anne-Marie Kaulfers spoke at the event, emphasizing the importance of promoting a healthy lifestyle for kids.

According to Tommie Carlisle, president of the USA Lions Club, the camp was a great opportunity for members. "We're giving back to the community, and we are a helping hand for those in need."

The USA Lions Club was founded in 1993. In addition to sponsoring diabetic camps, their recent projects include collecting funds for eye research, working with Habitat for Humanity, and collecting school supplies for disadvantaged youth. For more information on the USA Lions Club, contact Tommie Carlisle at or Judy Burnham at