Salud y Saludos
Salud y SaludosOctober 2013
In This Issue
From the Dean's Desk
Graduates Acceoted into Post-Graduate Program
National Institutes of Health Awards Grant
OT Students Inducted into PTE
UTEP Flu Shot Clinic, what a SUCCESS!
I Pick Wellness Campaign
Symposium Promoting Health Careers Provided Direction and Opportunities for UTEP Students
MRC Curriculum Changes
SW Contracted with Two Community Agencies
Barbara Schoen appointed Director MRCP
Dr. Oralia Loza Presented her Research at Conference
New Building 
Calendar of events

Saturday, Nov 2, 2013
San Elizario Independent School District Health Fair
San Elizario High School
9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
 

Wednesday, Nov 6, 2013
CAPSHR 5th Annual Report Thanksgiving Potluck
Armijo Recreation Center
11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
 

Wednesday, Nov 20, 2013
Kick0Off to The Great American Smokeout
UTEP Union East 3rd Floor
9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
 

Thursday, Nov 28,
Friday, November 29, 2013
Thanksgiving Holidays
 

Saturday, Dec 14, 2013
College of Health Sciences Graduation Celebration and Hooding Ceremony
Magoffin Auditorium
3:30 PM
 

Saturday, Dec 14, 2013
University Commencement Ceremony
7:00 PM
Don Haskins Center
 

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From the Dean's Desk 
Dean CurtisJust three weeks ago, for the first time ever, UTEP was honored as a finalist for the C. Peter Magrath University Community Engagement Award. The Nuestra Casa Initiative, lead by Social Work faculty member, Dr. Eva Moya, was selected as the winner of the Outreach Scholarship W.K. Kellogg Foundation Engagement Award for the Southern U.S. Region for its international impact on tuberculosis awareness. Dr. Moya and Dr. Blanca Lomeli of Project Concern International presented the project in the national competition with three other regional finalists, at the Engagement Scholarship Conference at Texas Tech University in Lubbock on October 8, 2013. The national award will be announced on November 10-12 at the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities 126th Annual Meeting in Washington, DC. We are so proud of Dr. Moya and Nuestra Casa!

Graduates Accepted into Post-Graduate Program
We are proud to announce that two graduates from the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) Class of 2012 (our first DPT class) were accepted into competitive post-graduate residency programs.

Dr Katherine Carson, DPT was accepted into AT Stills University Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency Program in Mesa, Arizona. The length of the program is 12 months and delivered in 8 learning modules, and she will be taught be expert mentors.

Dr Marcos Lopez, DPT was accepted into the University of Texas (UT) Southwestern Medical Center - Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency Program. In this 15 month program, each resident is expected to develop a case report or conduct a research project that is suitable for publication or that culminates in poster or platform presentation at state or national conferences. The residents are also expected to be lab instructors and assist in teaching courses for entry level DPT students at UT Southwestern.

Both programs prepare the residents to sit for the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties' Specialist Certification in Orthopaedics.

The DPT Class of 2014 has recently raised $2,500 to support physical therapy research in Texas. This money will be presented to the Texas Physical Therapy Foundation (TPTF) at the Texas Physical Therapy Association Annual Conference in Arlington, Texas this month. This is the third class of UTEP DPT students to donate $2000 or more to this important foundation which provides research grants to physical therapy faculty, clinicians, and students in the state. UTEP is the only physical therapy program in Texas to consistently give donations to TPTF at this high level.

Dr Celia Pechak was recently elected as Chair of the American Physical Therapy Association's Global Health Special Interest Group. Her 3-year term will start February 2014.

National Institutes of Health Awards Grant
Dr. Gabriel Ibarra-Mejia Dr. Gabriel Ibarra-Mejia, MD, PhD, instructor in the Department of Public Health Sciences has been awarded a $5,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health - National Library of Medicine under the Environmental Health Information Partnership (EnHIP) 2013 Outreach initiative. Dr. Ibarra-Mejia will conduct a survey of musculoskeletal pain and discomfort in Hispanic construction workers from the El Paso del Norte Region. The purpose of this project is to explore the characteristics of a sample of the Hispanic construction worker population in the Paso del Norte, in order to identify the needs for occupational health and safety, and wellness intervention programs. Using an observational, cross-sectional study design, a questionnaire will be developed to collect demographic, socioeconomic, occupational, history of diseases, self-perceived level of health, level of knowledge of chronic work-related musculoskeletal disorders, safety training, perception and knowledge of safety training, identify safety-training and knowledge barriers, and self-reported frequency and intensity of musculoskeletal pain and discomfort symptoms from a sample of one-hundred and twenty Hispanic construction workers. This study will be conducted in a twelve-month period and will include an evaluation phase in which progress will be evaluated by completing all the proposed aims, dissemination of information to practitioners, researchers and stakeholders.

OT Students Inducted into PTE
Six Master of Occupational Therapy students from the Class of 2014 were inducted into the Pi Theta Epsilon (PTE) National Honor Society. Pi Theta is a specialized honor society for occupational therapy students and alumni. The society recognizes and encourages superior scholarship among students enrolled in professional entry-level programs at accredited educational programs across the United States.

The objective of the society, as outlined by the founders of PTE, was to contribute to the advancement of occupational therapy through special projects of its members. At present, the mission of Pi Theta Epsilon is to promote research and scholarship among occupational therapy students. This serves not only the profession but also helps to insure quality health care services for the general public. Membership in Pi Theta Epsilon is extended to eligible students who meet certain GPA standards, are at the top 35 % of the class (after two semesters of full-time study) , and demonstrate superior leadership and scholarly abilities. Recognized chapters are affiliated only with accredited OT programs who have submitted applications to the national office.

The students who were inducted were Cristina Balderrama, Mario Carrasco, Adriana Martinez, Samantha Minten, Noah Munoz, and Lindsey Pace. The first director of the occupational therapy program at UTEP, Dr. Gretchen Schmalz, was the keynote speaker for the event, and spoke to the students about the rich history and transformation of the profession over her years as an occupational therapist. Congratulations students, on this very important honor!

From left to right: A. Martinez, C. Balderrama, L. Pace, M. Carrasco, S. Minten, N. Munoz
UTEP Flu Shot Clinic, what a SUCCESS!
The University of Texas at El Paso offered Flu Shot Clinics on campus October 7-12. The UTEP Wellness Program, Human Resource Services, Center for Accommodations and Support Services, Walgreens and volunteers from the UTEP Miner Volunteer Corps and UTEP Pharmacy program partnered to immunize over 2000 students, faculty and staff. The shots were available at no cost to UTEP medical health plan members, including covered dependents and retirees and flu shot vouchers were given out to over 1000 uninsured students. The clinics were scheduled along with Ability Awareness Week activities that focused on informative and inspirational events. This partnership was such a positive experience, organizers plan to collaborate again next year for an even more successful event.

I Pick Wellness Campaign
In an effort to improve the health of faculty, staff and students, The University of Texas at El Paso Wellness Program has partnered with UTEP food services and vending machine contractors to encourage healthy eating and promote healthier food options. The I Pick Wellness Campaign is a movement to increase employee and student access to healthy food and beverage options on campus. The campaign will include I Pick Wellness easy-to-understand nutrition information posters, motivational signs, labels, stickers and magnets that will be placed at UTEP food service venues and vending/beverage machines to help employees and students make informed, healthful choices. As another component of the I Pick Wellness campaign UTEP health plan members will also have the opportunity to receive Wellness Buck discount coupons, redeemable for I Pick Wellness healthy food items at selected campus venues. The UTEP Wellness program will also work to adopt campus wide nutritional standards for vending and beverage machines that support healthy eating habits by making these options available and attractive to UTEP employees and students. For more information about the I Pick Wellness Campaign contact the UTEP Wellness Office at 747-6738 or [email protected].

Symposium Promoting Health Careers Provided Direction and Opportunities for UTEP Students
The First Annual Interdisciplinary Symposium for Health Promoting Professions provided an opportunity for students to explore health promoting programs in the College of Health Sciences, School of Nursing and the College of Sciences. Dr. Schoen was especially impressed that the 100% of the programs in the College of Health Sciences participated in the event. "It was truly a team effort", explained Schoen; "this event would not have been possible without the assistance of the planning committee, over 45 presenters, dozens of volunteers and many sponsors". Attendees gained important information about these dynamic, challenging fields while student presenters gained valuable experience in presenting in a professional setting. This symposium is a vital component of a grant Schoen received through the National Library of Medicine's Environmental Health Information Partnership. Survey data collected will be used to better understand attendees' baseline and gained knowledge in several key health related areas. Plans are currently underway for next year's event with plans to include health promoting programs in other UTEP colleges.

MRC Curriculum Changes
The Masters of Rehabilitation Counseling Program recently had several courses approved through the graduate council strengthening the department's ability to provide quality programing in the areas of vocational assessment as it relates to vocational rehabilitation, lifespan and related human growth and development of persons with disabilities and provide student's opportunities for additional exposure to rehabilitation counseling research.

SW Contracted with Two Community Agencies
The Department of Social Work has recently contracted with two community agencies as practicum sites for graduate social work students. DaVita, Inc. is a Fortune 500 company and has 12 different dialysis sites throughout the city of El Paso and serve patients who require dialysis treatment. This partnership will allow our students hands on experience in medial social work, specializing in the area of nephrology. We have also contracted with a Las Cruces agency, Expressive and Cognitive Behavioral Mental Health. This agency works with children and families who have experienced trauma. Social work students will be trained in techniques such as play and art therapy as well as traditional therapies effective with these populations. The Department is very appreciative and excited to be working with these two new partners.

Barbara Schoen appointed Director MRCP
Dr. Barbara Schoen Barbara Schoen, PhD, CRC, has been appointed Director, Masters of Rehabilitation Counseling Program. Dr. Schoen joined the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) faculty in the Rehabilitation Counseling Program in 2010. She has a long history of advocacy focused on serving marginalized populations particularly individuals with disability. Prior to her doctorate, Dr. Schoen held an Advanced Rehabilitation Research Training Fellowship funded through the National Institute of Disability and Rehabilitation Research, at the University of Michigan where her research investigated outreach patterns of rural consumers. Schoen's research was funded in part by a grant through the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and her efforts were recognized when she received the 2009 Earl Walden Award for Outstanding Achievement in Rural Advocacy from the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL).

In 2009 Dr. Schoen held a position at Florida Atlantic University as a Visiting Professor in the Counselor Education department while she completed her dissertation. She taught several courses in both the Rehabilitation Counseling and Mental Health programs and served on several committees including the President's Diversity Committee. Since she joined UTEP in 2010 as an Assistant Professor Dr. Schoen's scholarly contributions have continued to focus on marginalized populations. She is the principal investigator of a grant through the National Library of Medicine that examines UTEP students understanding of health disparities and their interest in serving vulnerable underserved populations including Hispanic individuals in border communities. Dr. Schoen is also a PI on a Rehabilitation Research and Training Center Grant working with a nationally based team of researchers on Evidenced-Based Practices in Vocational Rehabilitation with an end goal of predicting consumer service needs. She has a growing body of publications and national presentations and was most recently awarded The Miner Ability Award which recognizes excellence in promoting student support, advocacy, and leadership on campus and in broader life contexts, particularly for students with disabilities

Dr. Schoen's leadership within and outside the UTEP community has included service at multiple levels. In addition to multiple committee and mentorship responsibilities, she currently serves as the faculty advisor for UTEP's Beta Phi Chapter - an international honor society for students with disabilities. Congratulations Dr. Schoen!

Dr. Oralia Loza Presented her Research at Conference
Dr. Oralia Loza, Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Health Sciences, presented her research entitled: "Prevalence and Correlates of Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) among Non-Injecting Sex Partners of Injection Drug Users (IDUs) in Cd. Juárez, México" at the 13th Annual International Conference of the National Hispanic Science Network (NHSN) in Bethesda, MD on October 11, 2013 focused on Shared Challenges and Opportunities for Achieving Health Equity with Ethnically Diverse Populations. Dr. Loza is also the lead author on research entitled: "Sexual Transmission of Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) among IDUs and their Non-Injecting Sex Partners on the U.S.-Mexico border", research that has been accepted for a round table oral presentation at the 141st APHA Annual Meeting American Public Health Association (APHA) to be held in Boston, MA on November 4, 2013. Co-investigators in both research projects include UTEP MPH graduate Leilani Attilio, MPH and community partners Rebeca Ramos MA, MPH, Lic. Maria Elena Ramos, and Jorge Duque, MD.