Aug. 22, 2019

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GWIMS captures leadership award; Base Pair takes diversity honor


GWIMS earns AAMC’s national women in medicine award


UMMC’s chapter of the Group on Women in Medicine and Science has received the 2019 Association of American Medical Colleges GWIMS Leadership Award for an Organization (Emerging Leader). The chapter will be recognized Nov. 9 at the AAMC’s annual meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.

Since the first national award was presented in 1955, the AAMC has bestowed it upon just 19 women in medicine programs and 24 individuals.

According to the chapter’s award notification letter, it was selected because “Your organization clearly has distinguished itself with its emerging commitment to advocating for the professional advancement of women in medicine and science, and helping women in medicine and science realize their potential.”

UMMC’s chapter president is Dr. Kimberly Bibb, UMMC assistant professor of family medicine. Previous chapter presidents include Dr. Barbara Craft (2014-15), Dr. Jennifer Sasser (2015-16), Dr. Vani Vijayakumar (2016-17), Dr. Norma Ojeda (2017-18) and Dr. Mohadetheh Moulana (2018-19).

Since its establishment in 2013, UMMC’s GWIMS chapter has grown to more than 700 members. Its goals include addressing gender equity; recruitment and retention; awards and recognition; and career advancement.

Base Pair garners insightful STEM diversity prize

basepair_2c.jpgThe biomedical research mentorship program for teens sponsored by the Medical Center has earned a top award from the nation’s largest and oldest diversity and inclusion publication for higher education.

Base Pair, a partnership between UMMC and Murrah High School in the Jackson Public School District, is the winner of the 2019 Inspiring Programs in STEM Award from INSIGHT into Diversity magazine.

Base Pair links a diverse group of teenagers aspiring for careers in the health sciences with UMMC researchers and physicians. The goal: To foster intellectual curiosity and advance science, technology, engineering and math education.

“We want to honor the schools and organizations that have created programs that inspire and encourage young people who may currently be in or are interested in a future career in STEM,” said Lenore Pearlstein, owner and publisher of INSIGHT into Diversity magazine. “We are proud to honor these programs as role models to other institutions of higher education and beyond.”

“The quality of mentorship provided by UMMC and Murrah faculty leads the way among programs nationally in terms of educational and career development of high school students,” said Dr. Rob Rockhold, UMMC deputy chief academic officer, professor of pharmacology and toxicology and professor of health sciences. Rockhold has directed Base Pair for the Medical Center since the program’s inception.

The award goes to colleges and universities that encourage and assist students from underrepresented groups to enter STEM fields. The magazine selects winners based on their efforts to inspire and encourage a new generation of young people to consider careers in STEM through mentoring, teaching, research and successful programs and initiatives.