Service to others

“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.” ~ Muhammad Ali


Day of Service… Giving Back …Getting More

There was evidence of some awesome human spirit at the recent Employee Day of Service. It was a good turnout of great people making a big difference in our community. What an incredible way to thank our terrific community and acknowledge our reciprocal commitment and support. The even better news is that this giving approach appears to be genetic among the incredible faculty, staff and students here who will even travel the world to lend expertise, comfort and compassion. In fact, our Chapter of the Student National Medical Association is providing free health screenings for patients and students at Murphy Middle School tomorrow! What a legacy and what a group we are privileged to work with!  Many, many thanks to all who could join in our recent Day of Service.  You can check some of them out here: We hope even more of you will be with us next year!

Defying Disaster …. Protecting People


And speaking of international service… we have talked several times in the recent past about the strong relationships – and impact – our Department of Emergency Medicine and Hospitalist Services, has around this world. Monday, Dr. Phillip Coule and others will be hosting top officials from the Korean Ministry of Health. They will be with us a part of stateside visit to improve their country’s preparedness for natural and manmade disasters. We have worked with this wonderfully innovative and thriving country for more than five years and our medical school, along with the National Disaster Life Support Foundation, Inc., which is based on our campus, already operates five training centers in South Korea to help their frontline providers be well-prepared for disaster. While in Augusta, the health ministry leadership also will be visiting with our colleagues at the Augusta Fire Department and Columbia County Emergency Management Agency. We so appreciate their interest and, once again, many kudos to our Emergency Department and the NDLS Foundation for taking a true leadership role in keeping our country – and South Korea – safe.


Tackling Cancer…. Teamwork Required

Most of us have been touched by cancer so we already know the fight is tough on so many levels. But a new Institute of Medicine report tells us that cancer care delivery in our country is facing a crisis for many reasons, including the growing demand for cancer care from an aging population, a shrinking workforce to provide that care, rising costs, and even the complexity of the disease and its treatment. The report also makes recommendations that include further  engaging patients, practicing evidence-based care and an even a better trained workforce. Dr. Patricia Ganz, chair of the committee that wrote this thought-provoking report says: As a nation, we need to chart a new course for patient care. We agree and indeed that’s just what we are doing. In fact, we recently announced the recruitment of Drs. Claude Sportѐs, Frank Mott and Shou-Ching Tang to assume leadership roles in keys areas of bone marrow transplant, head and neck cancer and breast cancer, respectively, at our Cancer Center. We welcome these new faculty members to our multidisciplinary, family-focused fight against cancer. We have much important work to do and, as the report reiterates, it takes a team to tackle this disease. To learn more about our newest cancer colleagues visit, To learn more about the Institute of Medicine report, see

Cunning Cancer … Persistent Pathologists

Innovation goes a long way as well. Our Dr. Ravindra Kolhe and his research team decided not to just accept the fact that, even under the microscope, early liver cancer looks essentially the same as normal liver cells. How awful is it that? Kolhe’s desire to give patients their best chance against this highly lethal cancer led him to collaborate with California-based BioGenex laboratories to develop a test that turns these devious cancer cells a reddish brown. That’s showing them, Dr. Kolhe! He presented his findings this week at the American Society of Clinical Pathology 2013 Annual Meeting in Chicago. He and his collaborators, who include Pathology Residents Drs. Andy Rahardja and Puneeta Vasa, think this same approach may work in melanoma vs. the cells of harmless moles.  Once again, these important findings show us all what happens when we insist on finding a better way to help our patients. Great job everyone and continued great success in showing cancer for what it really is. Read more here –

Inspiring Insight …. Innovative Ideas

Speaking of innovation, we heard many inspiring stories of determination and success in biomedical sciences and more at the Innovation Summit 2013 this week. Some serious outside-the-box thinking was featured here including that of Jordan Eisenberg who founded UrgentRX, a Colorado company that makes easy-to-take – flavored, powdered, no water needed – versions of over-the-counter medications for problems from an upset stomach to a heart attack. Talk about giving people what they want! Check out this New York Times piece on Mr. Eisenberg,  There were also tons of great suggestions that could help us follow in these kind of innovative, extremely successful footsteps including a great shark tank panel that covered things like how  to make successful pitches to investors. Our special thanks to Drs. Christopher McKinney and Marc Miller for their leadership in this exciting, informative event.

Opening Minds …. Delivering Diversity

The beautiful Kroc Center was the site of the 3rd Annual Diversity and Inclusion Summit this week which really lived up to its theme: Challenge Your Perspective. Participants heard compelling talks on issues such as unconscious bias and how to improve perception as well as communication. The Keynote was Gary Guller who climbs mountains and inspires others to do the same and so much more. Mr. Guller lost the use of his arm in a mountaineering accident, asked to have it amputated, then bravely resumed his climbing. Ten years ago he led the largest cross-disability group to reach the base camp of Mount Everett. During his talk in Augusta, he led us to a better understanding of how we can help others – and ourselves – reach such peaks. So much food for thought for a better future for us all! We thank and congratulate Dr. Kent Guion and our entire diversity team for another important job well done.

Urology Alums … Gathering in Augusta

As we speak, the Rinker/Witherington Society Annual Meeting for community urologists and other MCG/GR Health System urology residency alums, is underway in our fair city. There is an informative lineup as always with topics like robotic surgery and therapy options for masses in the kidney. There’s a fundraising golf tournament tomorrow then more science on Sunday. This is a terrific tradition and kudos to Dr. Martha Terris for helping make it happen.


Hearts for the Arts …. Downtown Delights … Join Us

The cooling temperatures always signal an awesome event in our city: Arts in the Heart of Augusta. What a terrific annual opportunity to be entertained and sample the world’s fare. We thank and congratulate the Greater Augusta Arts Council for 33 years of jam-packed fun in the heart of our city. Check out what’s in store at Hope to see you there!

Sharing Success… Lending Support 


Next week promises yet another great visitor to our campus: Dr. Jinming Yu, President of China’s Shandong Cancer Hospital and Institute and Honorary President of the Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences, is visiting the GRU Cancer Center. He’s also Editor-in-Chief of the Chinese Journal of Radiation Oncology and a recent President of the Chinese Society of Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology. This incredibly accomplished individual can provide great insight and support as we build our new Department of Radiation Oncology. We so appreciate his coming to visit with us and his colleague, our very own Dr. Spring Kong, and look forward to working with him.


Happy Together …Meaningful Mingling

And finally, another shout-out for the terrific opportunity next week for our incredible existing faculty to meet our fabulous new faculty. Please gather with us at a beautiful setting high above our city for the Fall reception for new and returning faculty members and their spouses, partners or special guests, hosted by the Faculty Club and Faculty & Spouses Club. It’s set for next Friday, Sept. 27, from 5:30-7:30 p.m., at The Pinnacle Club. RSVP by Sept. 23 to Susan Salisbury,, or Fay Verburg, or Terry McBride, It promises to be a fabulous gathering.



Sept. 25 – GRU and GR Health System host the manager training session, “Raising the Bar – Motivating Employees.” Sessions are at 7:30-9:30 a.m., Lee Auditorium and 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Alumni Center, Banquet Rooms A, B and C, both at the Health Sciences Campus; and 3-5 p.m. JSAC Ballroom, Summerville Campus. Register online through the WebInservice Learning System (MC Strategies)  Course registration instructions may be accessed at:

Sept. 25 – A drop-in Grand Opening for the Military Resource Center from 2-4:30 p.m. at the MRC,  Second Floor, Washington Hall on the Summerville Campus.

Sept. 26-27 – Brain Injury – Pathways to Recovery is the topic for The Southern Translational Education and Research (STAR) Conference 2013 to be held at the Augusta Marriott. Registration begins at 5 p.m. Sept. 26 in the plaza lobby. Please contact Kim McKenzie at and visit for more information about this joint initiative of GRU and the University of Georgia.

Sept. 28 – The annual Jaguar Jaunt 5k starts at 7:30 am at the Maxwell House on the Summerville Campus.  Join friends, family, and neighbors for a run through the historic Summerville neighborhood and the Summerville campus.  Runners (and walkers) of all fitness levels are invited and proceeds support  GRU students and patients  as part of our A Day for GRU. Visit for more info and registration.

Oct. 2 – GRU EII Health Sciences Education Grand Rounds, co-sponsored by the College of Allied Health Sciences, Developing Interprofessional Sexual Health Competencies: Why We Should Care, noon-1 p.m., EC 1222.

Oct. 3 – Come out to meet Ms. Sherron Watkins, Enron Whistleblower at 6 p.m. on the Summerville Campus. She is the Russell A. Blanchard Distinguished Lecturer in Ethics.

Oct. 9, 10 – GRU’s  2013 Annual Patient- and Family- Centered Care Conference will have the theme , I am the Patient Experience: What’s In It for Me, and will be held Oct. 9, 1-5 p.m. and Oct.  10, 8 a.m. – noon, in the Lee Auditorium. This year’s speaker is Jason Wolf, Executive Director of the Beryl Institute.

Oct. 10– The MCG Alumni Association Regional Reception will be held at 6 p.m. at the Doublegate Country Club in Albany, Ga.

Oct. 11 – MCG Faculty Senate meeting, noon, Lee Auditorium.

Oct. 12 – The White Coat ceremony will be held at the Bell Auditorium at 3 p.m. with the reception immediately following at the Old Medical College building. Please check this event page on our MCG Facebook to follow details-

Oct. 15 – Join in the grand opening of the Northwest Campus based in Rome at noon at the James D. Maddox Heritage Hall at Georgia Highlands College, 415 E. Third Avenue at Glenn Milner Blvd. in Rome. Follow this link for a map: and for the event page.

Oct. 15 – The MCG Alumni Association Regional Reception will be held in Rome, Ga. at 6 p.m. at the Coosa Country Club

Oct. 18-20 – The American Medical Student Association (AMSA) chapter is co-hosting the Empowering Future Physicians Conference 2013 with the Morehouse School of Medicine. Please check out this event link for more information,

Oct. 26 – The MCG Alumni Association Regional Reception will be held in Augusta, Ga. at 6 p.m. at the Augusta Country Club.

Oct. 27 – The MCG Alumni Association Board Meeting will be held at 9:30 a.m. at the Alumni Center Ballroom on the GRU Campus.

Nov. 8 – MCG Faculty Senate meeting, noon, Lee Auditorium

Nov. 15 – GRU EII Health Sciences Education Grand Rounds, co-sponsored by the Department of Oral Health and Diagnostic Sciences, Critical Thinking: Teaching and Measuring, noon-1 p.m., GC 5002.

Nov. 21 – ElI Career Development 101 for new faculty will be held noon-5:15 p.m. at the GRU Alumni Center.

Dec. 13 – MCG Faculty Senate meeting, noon, Lee Auditorium.

Check out our MCG Facebook page at and Twitter page as well #Follow.

Have a great weekend!