Penn State College of Medicine
Alumni Update
Issue #8March 2012

Stories This Issue

A Message from the President of the Class of 2012 

Personalizing Medicine for the Future

Penn State College of Medicine Legacies: Following in their Parents' Footsteps   


Graham Jeffries, M.D. to Receive Penn State Honorary Alumni Award


Match Day 2012


A Student Thank You

A Planned Gift by Robert Schnarrs, M.D. '82

Wine Festival to Benefit Children's Hospital  


Medical Center, College of Medicine, and Penn State News


Share Your News

and Stay Connected 

Have you changed your email or mailing address recently? Did you get married, have a baby, or have you taken part in medical missions abroad? We want to hear from you, and so do your fellow alums! Send your updates to the Alumni Relations Office  

Suggested Links



Contact Us

Alumni Relations Office by email or 717-531-7063 

Upcoming Events

Friday, May 4
Wine Festival Event
Giant Center -
Hershey, PA

Friday and Saturday, Sept. 21-22
COM Alumni Weekend
Penn State Hershey Medical Center -
Hershey, PA

Monday, Oct. 1 (tentative)
Surgery Alumni & Friends Reception - Chicago, IL

Sunday, Nov. 4 (tentative)
AAMC Alumni & Friends Reception - San Francisco, CA

Sunday, Nov. 11 (tentative)
Ophthalmology Alumni & Friends Reception -
Chicago, IL

Tuesday, Nov. 13
Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital Dedication and Celebration - Hershey, PA

Tuesday, Nov. 27 (tentative)
Radiology Alumni & Friends Reception - Chicago, IL

Friday, Dec. 7
Annual Dean's Reception -
New York, NY

For more information about the events, including locations and times, please email the Alumni Relations Office. 

Share The Newsletter

Share The News  

Please pass along the Penn State College of Medicine Alumni Update to friends and encourage them to join the mailing list. Forward this email by using the link at the bottom of the page.

Alumni Weekend 2012 


The two-day event is set for September 21-22. When you receive your Alumni Weekend brochure please take the time to register for the annual celebration.

If you have any questions please email them to the Alumni Relations Office.


Thank You Class Reunion Volunteers
The Alumni Office appreciates the efforts of the alumni volunteers who are helping to ensure that Alumni Weekend 2012 will be a celebration to remember. Those involved include:
Class of 1972 
Jack Cahn, MD 
Marianne Felice, MD 
Thomas Godfrey, MD 
Jane Petro, MD 
Tom Risser, MD 
Harris Stutman, MD 
Class of 1977 
James Caggiano, MD 
Robert Goldstein, MD 
John Messmer, MD 
Martin Scheinholtz, MD 
Class of 1982 
Debbie Durisek, MD 
Wayne Geller, MD 
Fred Harchelroad, MD 
Robert Schnarrs, MD 
Class of 1987 
Eric Bour, MD 
Michael Cummings, MD 
Margaret Donahue, MD 
John Duda, MD 
Dave Hulbert, MD 
Alberto Laureano, MD 
Bernie Moglia, MD 
Sue Nuber, MD 
Class of 1992   
Anne Dall, MD  
Elizabeth Lange, MD 
Andrea Murphy, MD
James Powell, MD 
Class of 1997 
Todd Campbell, MD 
Suzanne Van Ness
   Caccamese, MD
Gail Hertz, MD 
Class of 2002 
Heather Davies, MD 
Robert Gallo, MD 
Matthew Silvis, MD 
Josh Tice, MD 
Class of 2007 
Garrick Baskerville, MD 
Adriana Quinones- 
   Garcia, MD 
Ninad Pendharkar, MD 

Make a Gift



With the rising cost of a medical education, now more than ever scholarship support is a fundraising priority at Penn State College of Medicine. Please consider making a gift.

Medical Center Shot
A Message from the President of the Class of 2012Dejah Judelson


Dear Alumni, 


I am delighted to share with you the excitement our Class of 2012 has for our graduation this May. In a few months, we will join you as proud alumni of the Pennsylvania State University. Penn State College of Medicine has given us four incredible years of opportunity, support, personal growth, and professional development, from the best teachers and mentors anyone could ask for. We will always treasure the friendships and relationships started here, and expect to continue them as we start the next phase of our training.


Why do we feel Penn State is so special? I have spoken with many medical students at national conferences and on the interview trail and was surprised to learn that all too often, the students at other schools did not know their dean, did not spend time with their mentors, could not remember sharing a personal conversation with their professors, or did not know who to go to if there was a problem. The network of support here at Penn State Hershey, from the Offices of Medical Education and Student Affairs, to the nursing staff, residents, and clinical faculty is absolutely outstanding.


When we see our deans and residents at the local supermarket and restaurants, we can talk to them about their days and their lives. We realize that role models are right in front of us. The relationships we have made here make Penn State Hershey the special experience other schools can envy. This is why we have mixed feelings when we realize we are leaving here soon.


As a relatively young medical school we honor our education, we treasure our sharing community, and have pride for the quality of our friendships with staff and faculty. Now, we look forward to sharing that relationship as alumni.


We thank you, the graduates before us, who have blazed the trail and provided feedback to make our experience so rewarding. We are forever grateful. 


Dejah Judelson, MS4 

President, Class of 2012   


Personalizing Medicine
for the Future 
Dr. James Broach
James R. Broach, Ph.D., is the Director of the Penn State Hershey Institute for Personalized Medicine. 

While personalized medicine is emerging as one of the most promising approaches to medicine nationally, the field already has a distinguished tradition and grounding at Penn State College of Medicine.


Consider that our first Dean, George Harrell, M.D., established Penn State as the first College of Medicine to have a Humanities Department, promoting the idea that students should learn the art along with the science of medicine - or, as he called it, "hearts and handbags."


And Elliot Vesell, M.D., Evan Pugh professor emeritus and founding chair of the Department of Pharmacology, is widely considered to be one of the pioneers of personalized medicine. As early as 1967, Dr. Vesell published groundbreaking research identifying environmental and genetic factors that caused large variations in how individuals respond to drugs.



Penn State College of Medicine Legacies: Following in their Parents' Footsteps    

Consider this: 1. Penn State alumni are known for their fierce pride and loyalty to the institution. 2. Parents typically love when their children follow in their footsteps for a career.


So we wondered, how big a role do physician parents play in convincing their children to pursue medicine and choose Penn State for medical school?


"Was I happy that he chose Penn State? Yes," Trent Gause, M.D., '86, said emphatically, speaking about his son Trent, '15, a Yale graduate in his first year of medical school at Penn State. "Did I try to influence him? Absolutely!"




Graham Jeffries, M.D., to Receive
Penn State Honorary Alumni Award


Dr. Jeffries

A man who has impacted the lives of many Penn State College of Medicine alumni through the years will be recognized with the Penn State Honorary Alumni Award on June 1 and 2 during Traditional Reunion Weekend at University Park.


His father wanted him to be a farmer, but even as a child growing up in New Zealand, Graham H. Jeffries had a different idea. He wanted to be a doctor. Little did he know the seeds he would plant. After completing his medical education at Otago Medical School, University of New Zealand in 1952, he went to Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar and met Elizabeth Jones, an American from New York, also studying in England. The couple married in 1955 and, in 1958, Jeffries accepted a gastroenterology fellowship at New York Hospital and Cornell University Medical College. A few years later, he became chief of the department.


Match Day 2012: The Residencies Await


Match Day 2012

Match Day 2012 for the College of Medicine took place on March 16 at the Hershey Country Club. It is with great pride and pleasure that we are able to share with you the results of this year's match, as well as a video clip and photo gallery of the event.


Click here to view a list of this year's graduating class and where they will continue their education during their residency training, as well as a list breaking down the match results by area of specialty. Of the 131 graduates, 10.8 percent will remain at the Medical Center for residency. In addition, programs in 26 states and the District of Columbia are represented on the match list.


In addition, if you would like to view the humorous opening speech from fourth-year student James Monaco click here.


Please join us in congratulating our students as they begin the next phase of their medical training. Many of them will join institutions where you teach or practice, and you are encouraged to reach out to them and welcome them as they join the ranks of alumni from the Penn State College of Medicine.

Alumni Scholarships Mean so Much to
Our Students


Students continue to make the choice to attend Penn State College of Medicine despite the cost of a medical education. They do so because of the commitment we A Penn State College of Medicine Student Thank You for Alumni Scholarship Support provide to them through our faculty, our staff, and our alumni.

Fourth-year medical student Ryan Svoboda is one many students who have benefited from alumni scholarship support during the pursuit of fulfilling his dream of becoming a physician. In this video clip, he offers his thanks and gratitude to all College of Medicine alumni who have supported scholarships.


A Lasting Impact through Planned Giving


Dr. Schnarrs '82

When it came to picking a medical school for Robert Schnarrs, M.D., '82, it came down to one thing, Penn State College of Medicine "just felt right," according to Dr. Schnarrs. "I tell undergraduates and graduate students, as well as residents, to use their same gut feeling when considering their options for advancement."

When Schnarrs came to Penn State Hershey he thought he was going to be an oncologist, but experimental surgery courses made him wonder if there was another medical calling for him. Through his experiences with Bill Graham, M.D., who was his advisor, Schnarrs found his way to plastic surgery and was fortunate enough to eventually land in one of the top plastic surgery residencies in the country. "Ultimately I did end up in oncology, since the bulk of my practice deals with breast reconstruction after mastectomy for cancer."



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Wine Festival in Hershey to Benefit Children's Hospital


Wine Festival Logo 2012Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company will present the fifth annual Wine Festival in Hershey on Friday, May 4 at Giant Center in Hershey, Pa. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital.

To learn more or purchase tickets, click here.