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July 21, 2011

People of the Times

Besterfield-SacreMary E. Besterfield-Sacre, Fulton C. Noss Faculty Fellow in the Department of Industrial Engineering, recently was named one of 12 new fellows of the American Society for Engineering Education.

ASEE is a nonprofit organization of individuals and institutions committed to furthering education in engineering and engineering technology. Fellow member status is conferred upon those who have been ASEE members for at least 10 years and have made outstanding contributions to engineering education.

An associate in Pitt’s Learning Research and Development Center and director of the Engineering Education Research Center, Besterfield-Sacre has research interests in engineering education assessment and evaluation methods. She has received funding from the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education, the Sloan Foundation, the Engineering Information Foundation and the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance. Her current research focuses on innovative product design, entrepreneurship and modeling.

DuganAnn Dugan, founder and director of the Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence (IEE), part of the Katz Graduate School of Business, recently was elected to the Team Pennsylvania Foundation board of directors.

The Team Pennsylvania Foundation helps bridge the communication gap between government and the private sector, allowing for better partnerships between the citizens and businesses of Pennsylvania.

Dugan will represent regional business interests in decisions concerning state economic policies regarding business growth and attraction, education and workforce development and government efficiency.

Faculty at the School of Pharmacy recently were honored.

• Donna Huryn of pharmaceutical sciences has been selected as a fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS). The fellows program recognizes ACS members for their achievements in and contributions to the science and the profession, as well as service to the society.

McGivney• Melissa McGivney of pharmacy and therapeutics was selected by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores Foundation as the recipient of the 2011 Community Pharmacy Faculty Award.

The award recognizes a pharmacy school faculty member who has made significant contributions to the practice of community pharmacy through innovations in patient care. Faculty members are assessed on their accomplishments in advancing patient care through community pharmacy as well as preparation of future leaders in pharmacy care.

Schiff• During the School of Pharmacy’s graduation, faculty and preceptors were honored by the Class of 2011. Paul Schiff of pharmaceutical sciences was voted the Stanford I. Cohen Teacher of the Year; SmithburgerPamela Smithburger of pharmacy and therapeutics received the Faculty Preceptor of the Year award, and Shrina Duggal, clinical pharmacy specialist at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, received the Clinical Preceptor of the Year award.

WeardonThe Children’s Heart Foundation presented its Smart Heart award to Peter Wearden, a medical school faculty member in cardiothoracic surgery and director of the pediatric mechanical cardiopulmonary support program at Children’s Hospital.

The award is given to a physician who demonstrates innovative approaches to the care of pediatric cardiac patients.

Wearden was honored for his work with the Pediatric Ventricular-Assist (PediaFlow) device. Designed for children birth-2 years, PediaFlow is an implantable miniaturized heart pump that uses a magnetically levitated impeller — technology that increases the lifespan of the pump, reduces the electrical power and cooling requirements and drastically reduces blood damage and clotting.

The Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence has hired James Remcheck as the program manager of the agricultural entrepreneurship program, which is focused on enabling producers to increase market share, define new distribution channels and develop efficiencies.

John Nuzzo, a faculty member in Pitt-Bradford’s nursing program, has been named an Alumni Nurse of Distinction by the Jamestown Community College Alumni Association. The annual recognition honors nursing graduates who have distinguished themselves as health care providers.

Nuzzo is a nursing supervisor at Bradford Regional Medical Center and an instructor for its nursing assistants program, and instructs first- and second-year nursing students at UPB.

BobakPitt-Titusville has named Glenn Bobak head coach of the men’s basketball program.

Bobak previously coached the boy’s varsity team at North Clarion High, where the Wolves won a Keystone Shortway Athletic Conference championship. He was chosen to coach the men’s Sportsman 1 All-Star Team in 2009 and 2010.

Overall, Bobak has more than 20 years’ experience in coaching and administrating sports programs, ranging from youth levels through varsity in both basketball and baseball.

HorchAlso at Titusville, Scott P. Horch has been named director of residence life.

Horch  previously  was  assistant director of residence life and housing at Edinboro University.

Horch has considerable experience in conflict resolution, earning the designation of certified mediation officer.

In his new position, Horch will be responsible for creating a student-focused campus culture in addition to managing a comprehensive residence life program. He also serves as the chief student judicial officer for the campus.

ToniDarvilleToni Darville, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Children’s Hospital and a faculty member in pediatrics and immunology at the School of Medicine, will be awarded the Carol Ann Craumer Endowed Chair for Pediatric Research July 25.

The Carol Ann Craumer Endowed Chair recognizes outstanding leaders in pediatric research and provides resources for research innovations that directly could influence medical care for children.

Darville researches the immunological mechanisms for damage to the female reproductive tract caused by Chlamydia trachomatis. Chlamydia, the most frequently reported sexually transmitted disease in the United States and a major global public health target, causes infertility and is believed to play a role in preterm labor and complications in premature infants.

For the past 16 years, Darville has received research funding from the National Institutes of Health, and in 1998 she received the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society’s Young Investigator Award.

In 2009, with a team of Pitt medical school researchers, Darville established the UPMC Sexually Transmitted Infections Cooperative Research Center, which competed successfully for a $12.5 million, five-year grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Scientists at the center focus their research on the prevention of female reproductive tract complications caused by sexually transmitted infections. The research projects are aimed at developing new therapies to treat bacterial infections of the female upper genital tract that produce pelvic inflammatory disease.


The People of the Times column features recent news on faculty and staff, including awards and other honors, accomplishments and administrative appointments.

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