Fall 2010
Alumni Notes

synapse: University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine

Message from the president of the alumni association

By Lisa M. Lyons, M.D. '97

Lisa LyonsI am delighted to lead the alumni association as president for the next two years and look forward to continuing the work started by Louis Bonaldi M.D.'77.

The present and future are exciting times for our medical school and we alumni can play an important role in its future by giving our service and support. I hope you will join me as a dues-paying member and reconnect with the school through reunion activities, social events, and volunteer and philanthropic opportunities.

We will continue our new tradition of gathering each May to celebrate the association’s Outstanding Alumnus and 10- and 25-year reunion classes. This past May we recognized Robin Titus, M.D.’81. She is a shining example of one of the original missions of the medical school: to produce physicians to serve our state and more specifically, our rural communities. Robin has served Smith Valley and its people since 1984. During this time, she has continued her service to the School of Medicine as a rural preceptor, admissions committee representative and as a clinical professor.

This fall we will host a tour for alumni of the new Clinical Simulation Center in Las Vegas. Medical students and residents have access to state-of-the-art simulation equipment and the opportunity to participate in interdisciplinary education with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and Nevada State College nursing students at this facility. I hope you will join us for this special tour.

Upcoming Alumni Events

Clinical Simulation Center Tour and Reception
Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2010, 5:30 p.m.
Clinical Simulation Center of Las Vegas

Alumni Association Annual Reunion Weekend
Friday, May 13, 2011
University of Nevada School of Medicine Reno Campus

To learn more, visit us at the School of Medicine Alumni Association.

Early alumni affinity group: 1971–1980

Most of those affiliated with the School of Medicine know that it was founded as a two-year program, but few know the unique challenges met by its first class and those that followed before accreditation as a four-year institution in 1980. Despite those early challenges, Nevada’s medical school exceeded everyone’s expectations. Although much of the credit is attributable to early faculty and the founding dean, George Smith, M.D., it is also due to—you, its excellent students.

Those who matriculated from 1971 to 1977 left Nevada without a four-year medical degree and went on as the school’s ambassadors. Many wrote to Smith after their first year as transfers, proud and somewhat surprised to report they were better prepared on almost every level than new classmates with first and second year schooling from established programs. Alumni continued training in residencies across the country and exceeding expectations. Although technically not University of Nevada School of Medicine graduates, most two-year alumni still have a special place in their hearts for Nevada, the school that started them on the long road to becoming a physician. Medical school leadership recognizes the importance of its early alumni because without their success, this institution could not have received approval to become a four-year medical school.

Hopefully many early two-year alumni will be able to come back to Nevada and the School of Medicine on the weekend of May 13-15, 2011 to gather for the annual alumni reception as a special affinity group within the alumni association and to celebrate the first Dr. George Smith Memorial Scholarship award.

More Alumni Notes

Alumna establishes endowment in memory of George Smith