Spring 2017

synapse: University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine

Pari Lab Dedication
The Gregory S. Pari, Ph.D. Microbiology Laboratory opened in November 2016. Photo by Anne McMillin, APR

Renovated lab opens to undergraduate learners

The School of Medicine’s microbiology department dedicated a new facility on Nov. 2, 2016 in the name of the former department chair who brought the microbiology undergraduate major to the University of Nevada, Reno.

The Gregory S. Pari, Ph.D. Microbiology Laboratory is the place for undergraduates majoring in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology to extend their classroom learning into practical science applications.

The newly-renovated microbiology lab stands as a testimonial to Pari’s enthusiasm for microbiology as a field of study and the University students who decide to follow in his footsteps. Pari passed away in May 2015.

The microbiology major represents a joint effort by the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine and the University’s College of Science to train students at the undergraduate level in the fundamentals of modern microbiology. Research in the microbiology department focuses on immunology with an emphasis on cancer biology and microbial pathogenesis. The new lab boasts a fluorescent microscope, dissecting microscopes, a nanodrop spectrophotometer, a commercial refrigerator, incubators, microscope cameras along with collaborative and accessible lab stations, improved ventilation and chemical-resistant countertops.

Renovation of the space was made possible by a generous gift from Mick Hitchcock, Ph.D.

• Anne McMillin, APR

Local leaders interact with medical students at Project Medical Education

Froehlich and PME Particiants with human heart
Mary Froehlich, Class of 2019, points out the features of the human heart to Project Medical Education participants during their time in the anatomy lab. Photo by Teresa Danna-Douglas.

The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine hosted “Project Medical Education Nevada” on February 3, providing 18 community leaders and those in the broader health care sector with the opportunity to have one-on-one interactions with medical students while learning firsthand about what it takes to become a doctor.

Students, who also assisted with designing the sessions, shared their personal acceptance stories, experience with the curriculum, and anecdotes from their clinical years and the match process. Participants received hands-on training in heart dissection and suturing—both led by students—and were paired with a student and a physician during a visit to the family medicine clinic.

Thomas R. Kozel, Ph.D., professor of microbiology and immunology, led a highly-rated discussion of medical research, including his work on cryptococcal meningitis that has resulted in a diagnostic tool that may save as many as 100,000 lives each year in sub-Saharan Africa.

Before a closing reception, participants were presented with candy bars, some containing “golden tickets” in a Willy Wonka-themed mock Match Day.

In describing her experience, Toni Inserra, CEO of South Lyon Medical Center said: “The (Project Medical Education Nevada) program exceeded anything I could have ever imagined. The program was absolutely life-changing. I will make every effort in the future to provide support to the school, the staff and the students.”

• Jared Dashoff, AAMC