Kevin B. Mahoney: Chief Executive Officer, University of Pennsylvania Health System
Kevin B. Mahoney will become the next CEO of the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS), University of Pennsylvania President Amy Gutmann and J. Larry Jameson, executive vice president of the University of Pennsylvania for the Health System and dean of the Perelman School of Medicine, announced. Mr. Mahoney will assume his post on July 1, succeeding Ralph W. Muller, who has served as the health system’s CEO since 2003.
Mr. Mahoney is a 23-year veteran of leadership roles at Penn Medicine, currently serving as the executive vice president and chief administrative officer for UPHS, as well as the executive vice dean for Integrative Services for the Perelman School of Medicine.
“Kevin has an unrivaled breadth of experience and depth of knowledge of health care in an integrated academic medical center, combined with a profound personal commitment to Penn’s ambitious vision to build the academic health system of the future,” said President Gutmann. “We are confident that Kevin will successfully lead the team-based effort to propel UPHS to even greater heights, building on its unparalleled successes and enormous momentum.”
Reporting to Dr. Jameson, Mr. Mahoney will lead a health system which has grown over the past six years from three Philadelphia-based academic medical centers to encompass a broad footprint across the region, including the addition of three nationally recognized hospitals stretching from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, to Princeton, New Jersey, and an expansive outpatient network which provides more than 5.7 million visits per year. UPHS joins with the Perelman School of Medicine—which this month was ranked #3 in the annual US News list of the nation’s top medical schools (Almanac March 17, 2019)—to form Penn Medicine, a $7.8 billion organization.
Among his marquee leadership achievements at Penn Medicine, Mr. Mahoney developed the master plan concept for the former Philadelphia Civic Center site, known today as the Ruth and Raymond Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine and the Roberts Proton Therapy Center. These facilities, together with the Smilow Center for Translational Research and the Jordan Medical Education Center, became the nation’s first single building to fully integrate biomedical research, clinical care and medical education. Building on this tremendous success, he planned and now leads the project for the Pavilion on Penn’s University City campus, adjacent to HUP. The Pavilion, set to open in 2021, is the largest building project in Penn’s history and will be the most advanced inpatient hospital facility in the nation.
“Kevin was a chief architect behind so many of the efforts for which Penn Medicine has become nationally renowned. He was an early and strong contributor to our campus-wide efforts to make innovation part of Penn’s and Penn Medicine’s DNA,” Dr. Jameson said. “Those efforts are saving lives across the world, spurring Penn Medicine’s role in the development and commercialization of six FDA-approved therapies within just the past 18 months. Kevin is a champion for the ideas that will become tomorrow’s cures, supporting everything from small-scale start-up efforts to larger commercialization agreements and industry partnerships that are mapping what the future of health care will look like.”
Mr. Mahoney joined UPHS in 1996 and during his tenure has held additional positions including executive director of Penn’s primary care physician network and CEO of Phoenixville Hospital. He has served as a crucial strategist for Penn Medicine’s growth across the Delaware Valley, from the integration of Chester County Hospital into UPHS, to the move of Penn Medicine’s Level 1 trauma center to Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, to the construction of five multispecialty ambulatory facilities across the region. Most recently, he oversaw the implementation of a common electronic health record platform across Penn’s hospitals, numerous outpatient clinics and home care—making it the only comprehensive system of its kind in the region.
“Penn Medicine is a truly unique place where a collaborative spirit and teamwork builds on our rich history to lead the way forward in academic medicine,” Mr. Mahoney said. “My appointment as the next CEO of UPHS is humbling, and I am truly excited by this opportunity. Having worked at Penn Medicine for 23 years, I have seen first-hand the miracles performed by our faculty, physicians and staff. I know our best days are ahead with even more breakthrough treatments and the continued evolution of patient-centered care. I am grateful to President Gutmann and Dr. Jameson for giving me this unparalleled opportunity to continue serving Penn, Penn Medicine and our patients.”
David L. Cohen, chair of the Board of Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania, and Andrew R. Heyer, chair of the Penn Medicine Board, provided key counsel during the national search process for the CEO role, which began after Mr. Muller announced plans to step down last June.
Mr. Mahoney received his bachelor of arts degree in economics from Millersville University and an MBA and doctorate in business administration from Temple University. He serves on numerous boards for non-profit organizations in the Delaware Valley, including Puentes de Salud and Community Volunteers in Medicine. He has been recognized for his dedication to community and volunteer work, most recently as the recipient of the 2018 Heart of Philadelphia Award by the American Heart Association.
2019 Silfen Forum: Epidemic. Crisis. National Emergency
On Thursday, April 11, the 2019 Silfen Forum will address Is There an Antidote for the Opioid Epidemic? Seeking a Cure for the Worst Drug Crisis in American History. The event will take place in Irvine Auditorium at 3 p.m. and will be live streamed as well. Penn President Amy Gutmann and a panel of distinguished guests will have a wide-ranging discussion of the opioid crisis. President Gutmann will moderate the disucssion. The panelists will be:
Hon. Joseph R. Biden Jr., 47th Vice President of The United States, Benjamin Franklin Presidential Practice Professor at Penn
Hon. John Ellis “Jeb” Bush Sr., 43rd Governor of Florida, Presidential Practice Professor at Penn
Hon. James F. Kenney, Mayor of Philadelphia
Bertha Madras: professor of psychobiology, Harvard Medical School; former Deputy Director for Demand Reduction, White House Office of National Drug Control Policy
Jeanmarie Perrone: professor of emergency medicine and director of medical toxicology, Perelman School of Medicine, Penn
Live Webcast will be available online. See https://silfenforum.upenn.edu/webcast
Ivan Dmochowski: Alan MacDiarmid Term Professor
Ivan Dmochowski, professor of chemistry, has been named the Alan MacDiarmid Term Professor of Chemistry. Dr. Dmochowski’s laboratory develops chemical and biophysical tools to study complex biological systems, including new technologies for biomolecular imaging, identifying proteins and RNA molecules important in brain function, and fabricating functional bio-nanomaterials. He has collaborations with many researchers at Penn and throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.
Dr. Dmochowski is the recipient of many prizes and awards, including the American Chemical Society Akron Section’s Crano Award, the McKnight Technological Innovations in Neuroscience Award, the National Science Foundation Career Advancement Award and the Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award. He served as undergraduate chair of chemistry from 2015 to 2018, continues to serve as co-director of the Penn Pathways program, and is a member of the Provost’s Faculty Council on Access and Academic Support.
The Alan MacDiarmid Endowed Term Chair was established in 2001 by P. Roy Vagelos, (C’50, HON’99) and Diana T. Vagelos, Penn parents, in honor of longtime Nobel Prize-winning chemistry professor Dr. Alan MacDiarmid.
Dr. P. Roy Vagelos, a chemistry major who graduated from Penn in 1950 before going on to receive a medical degree from Columbia University, is the retired chairman and chief executive officer of Merck & Co. He currently serves as chairman of the Board at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Vagelos served as chair of the University’s Board of Trustees from 1995 to 1999, and he is a former member of the Penn Arts and Sciences’ Board of Overseers and the former chair of the Committee for Undergraduate Financial Aid. Diana T. Vagelos is a former overseer of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.
The Vagelos Institute for Energy Science and Technology in Penn Arts and Sciences is made possible by Dr. and Mrs. Vagelos. This most recent philanthropic investment in energy research at Penn follows the couple’s gift to endow two professorships focused on energy research in Penn Arts and Sciences, and their 2012 creation of the Vagelos Integrated Program in Energy Research (VIPER), an undergraduate degree program of Penn Arts and Sciences and the School of Engineering and Applied Science. The Vageloses’ longtime support of Penn Arts and Sciences also includes gifts to establish many science-related programs, undergraduate scholarships and endowed professorships.
Asif Agha: Francis E. Johnston Term Professor
Asif Agha, professor of anthropology, has been named the Francis E. Johnston Term Professor. Dr. Agha is a leading linguistic anthropologist whose research examines the structure and organization of human language and its use in human affairs, as well as the role of language use and communication in giving rise to forms of social organization. His book Language and Social Relations received the Edward Sapir Prize for best book in linguistic anthropology.
Dr. Agha currently serves as president of the Society for Linguistic Anthropology within the American Anthropological Association, as editor of the journal Signs and Society and as past editor of the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology. He has also served on the Penn Arts and Sciences Planning and Priorities Committee and the Committee on Undergraduate Education.
This chair was created through the bequest of G. Frederick Roll (W’34) and is named in honor of Francis E. Johnston, a biological anthropologist and an emeritus professor of anthropology at Penn. Dr. Johnston, who completed his PhD at Penn in 1962, was on the faculty of the department of anthropology for nearly four decades and served as department chair from 1982 to 1994. He also founded the Center for Community Partnerships’ Urban Nutrition Initiative, a project which has helped to improve community nutrition and wellness in West Philadelphia.
Perelman School of Medicine 2019 Teaching Awards
The Perelman School of Medicine announces this year’s teaching awards as follows:
The Leonard Berwick Memorial Teaching Award
Edward M. Behrens is the Joseph Hollander Chair in Pediatric Rheumatology, associate professor of pediatrics and chief of the division of rheumatology at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. He teaches first-year medical students in the immunology course, graduate students within the immunology and cell and molecular biology graduate groups and medical students, residents and fellows on the inpatient wards and outpatient clinics. In all of these settings, he strives to bring the basic tenets of fundamental immunology to connections with conditions that affect patients. He founded and teaches an intensive 12-week Immunology Boot Camp course for clinical fellows across the Perelman School of Medicine campus to reintroduce immunology fundamentals with clinical connections for trainees interested in updating their knowledge base. Over the past 10 years, Dr. Behrens has trained multiple MD/PhD students and clinical fellows in his laboratory. His passion for basic science and its potential for enhancing clinical patient care is matched by his passion for passing on this knowledge to the next generation of students. This enthusiasm has been noted by trainees at all levels, who recognize him as a role model as a physician-scientist-educator. A former trainee stated, “I consider having Dr. Behrens’ mentorship to be among the most important factors in my commitment to and success as a physician-scientist. He is consistently generous, insightful, strategic and kind.”
This award was established in 1980-1981 as a memorial to Leonard Berwick by his family and the department of pathology to recognize “a member of the medical faculty who in his or her teaching effectively fuses basic science and clinical medicine.” It is intended that this award recognize persons who are outstanding teachers, particularly among the younger faculty.
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching (at an Affiliated Hospital)
This year, there are three recipients of the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching: Meryl Cohen, Sharon Lewis and Greg Mayro.
Meryl S. Cohen completed her cardiology fellowship at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). She is currently professor of pediatrics at PSOM. Dr. Cohen was the medical director of the echocardiography laboratory at CHOP for 14 years. She is currently the program director for the cardiology fellowship, which trains six fellows a year along with multiple advanced cardiology fellows. She is an associate chief of the division of cardiology. She has mentored over 40 medical students, residents and fellows. She is the recipient of the 2018 American Society of Echocardiography Excellence in Teaching in Pediatrics Award and the 2018 Joanne Decker Mentoring Award at CHOP. She sits on the CHOP Committee for Academic Promotions and the Perelman School of Medicine Committee for Academic Promotions. One of her former fellows stated, “…what is particularly remarkable about Dr. Cohen is that her teaching is excellent in every aspect that we interact with her. She is of course nationally-recognized as an authority on echocardiography and her lectures on morphology and imaging are a highlight of the schedule.”
Sharon Lewis is an assistant professor of neurology who specializes in general neurology and neuromuscular medicine. She completed her neurology residency and neuromuscular fellowship at Penn in 2010 and stayed on as a faculty member. Dr. Lewis enjoys teaching in both the pre-clinical and clinical years and has a strong interest in mentoring trainees. She organizes the neurology faculty lecture series and coordinates the medical student outpatient neurology rotations at Pennsylvania Hospital. In addition, Dr. Lewis is the program director for the Penn Pipeline Program, which is a multi-tiered mentorship and education initiative that teaches health-care concepts to local West Philadelphia high school students and serves students who are underrepresented in medicine. Two former medical students stated that “she has dedicated her time to our education as medical students in the classroom and helped us develop our leadership skills all with passion and enthusiasm, which makes it a pleasure to work with and learn from her.”
Greg Mayro is an associate professor of clinical medicine. He is part of the Section of Hospital Medicine, and while he serves as the medical director for Hospital Medicine Service at Good Shepherd Penn Partners, his primary teaching site since he joined the Section in 2012 has been the VA, where, with great humility and appreciation, he oversees trainees taking care of those who have “borne the battle.” Dr. Mayro thoroughly enjoys teaching at the bedside and inspires critical thinking. A former student stated, “Dr. Mayro was an outstanding attending to work with. He set a strong tone of respect, empathy and curiosity, which made learning and working as a team incredibly rewarding. I very much appreciated the time he took to check in with all members of the team and intersperse teaching points throughout. Moreover, he modeled excellent patient communication and bedside manner while also encouraging our team to be cognizant of all the potential medical, psychological and social factors at hand contributing to a patient’s illness.”
The Dean’s Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching was established in 1987 to recognize clinical teaching excellence and commitment to medical education by outstanding faculty members from affiliated hospitals. One or more Dean’s Awards are given annually, the recipients being selected on the advice of a committee composed of faculty and students.
The Robert Dunning Dripps Memorial Award for Excellence in Graduate Medical Education
This year, there are two recipients for the Robert Dunning Dripps Memorial Award: Jon Morris and Lisa Zaoutis.
Jon B. Morris is the Ernest F. Rosato-William Maul Measey Professor in Surgical Education, vice chair of education for the department of surgery and the associate dean for student affairs. Graduate medical education has played a central role in his professional career; he has led the General Surgical Residency for 15 years (2003-2018). In addition to being the past president of the Association of Program Directors in Surgery (2014-2015), Dr. Morris has received a number of teaching accolades for his efforts in surgical education, including the Faculty Teaching Award (5), the Ernest F. Rosato Faculty Teaching Award (3), the Penn Pearls Award for outstanding clinical teaching (3) and the Christian R. and Mary Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award. Former trainees note that “as great as Dr. Morris’ contribution as an instructor of surgery and medicine has been, arguably his greater impact has been as the guardian of the surgical residency program; a program he has cultivated and elevated to an undeniably elite status” ... “he has touched and mentored hundreds of surgery residents in his time at Penn” ... “a fierce resident advocate and master educator ... beloved by the housestaff” ... “Dr. Morris has created an environment in the Penn Surgery Residency that fosters growth of the individual in clinical care, leadership, teaching and administration, and builds a healthy community of diverse, collaborative and respectful surgeons in training.”
Lisa B. Zaoutis is an associate professor of clinical pediatrics and recently stepped down as the director of the pediatrics residency program at CHOP. She is a general pediatric hospitalist and a pioneer in helping to establish the field of pediatric hospital medicine at CHOP and nationally. She is the co-editor of Comprehensive Pediatric Hospital Medicine, a field-defining textbook now in its second edition. Practicing and teaching medicine has been a passion for Dr. Zaoutis throughout her career, especially teaching learners to think independently and logically. Comments from medical students liken her to a sports coach who is “tough and no-nonsense while at the same time kind and encouraging. She actively works to promote the individual performance of each member of the team, while keeping the team working together to deliver the best possible care to the patients on the service. She sees it as her mission to teach us as much as possible and have fun doing it.” One resident wrote, “Perhaps the most impressive teachers are those who do not just display their knowledge, but rather pull that knowledge out of his/her learners. Dr. Z is just that kind of teacher. Without a shred of ego, Dr. Z remains one of our most effective and dynamic teachers.” Another resident wrote, “Dr. Z is a phenomenal physician and teacher. Energetic, passionate and fun, she exudes a profound sense of curiosity and wonder about the human body and the disease processes that affect it. This inspires those working with her to view medicine with a similar sense of wonder and awe.”
This award was established by the department of anesthesia in 1983-1984. As a pioneer in the specialty of anesthesia and chair of the department from 1943 to 1972, Dr. Dripps was instrumental in the training of more than 300 residents and fellows, many of whom went on to chair other departments. This award is to recognize excellence as an educator of residents and fellows in clinical care, research, teaching or administration.
Kyle Kampman is a professor of psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine and a staff physician at the Addiction Recovery Unit of the Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VAMC. He has extensive experience in the conduct of clinical trials evaluating medications for the treatment of cocaine, alcohol and opioid use disorder. He is the principal investigator of a NIDA-funded Cocaine Medication Development Center. He is the director of the Penn/Philadelphia VAMC (PVAMC) Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship Program. Dr. Kampman has mentored more than 20 clinical or research trainees. He supervises psychiatry residents in the treatment of addictions at the Addiction Recovery Unit. He is a course director of the addiction psychiatry elective for medical students. He lectures monthly to third-year medical students during their outpatient psychiatry rotation and teaches first-year medical students in the Brain and Behavior course. He has previously received the Scott Mackler Award for Excellence in Substance Abuse Teaching, the Martin P. Szuba Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching and Research and The Dean’s Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching at an Affiliated Hospital. One former fellow stated, “I cannot overstate the effect that Dr. Kampman has had on my life. Few outside of our field realize just how unique his knowledge and abilities are.”
Created in 1987 by the Blockley Section of the Philadelphia College of Physicians, this award is given annually to a member of the faculty at an affiliated hospital for excellence in teaching modern clinical medicine at the bedside in the tradition of Dr. William Osler and others who taught at Philadelphia General Hospital.
The Scott Mackler Award for Excellence in Substance Abuse Teaching
Joel A. Fein is a professor of pediatrics and emergency medicine at PSOM and an attending physician in the emergency department at CHOP. He is co-director of the CHOP Violence Prevention Initiative and the research co-director for the National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs (NNHVIP). Dr. Fein is a member of the leadership team for The Center for Pediatric Traumatic Stress, within the National Child Traumatic Stress Network. At CHOP he is the director of advocacy and health policy for the emergency department. A former medical student stated, “The clinical pearls he taught through these encounters I now teach to medical students, residents and fellows. He has always had an ability to distill his teaching points, aimed appropriately at the level of his learners, with short and memorable delivery, honed by years of teaching in the fast-paced environment of the emergency department.”
This award was established in 2000 by the Penn/VA Center for Studies of Addiction and the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Mackler was known for his excellence in teaching medical students, residents, post-doctoral fellows, nurses and other Penn faculty in many different departments in the area of substance abuse.
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Basic Science Teaching
There are two recipients this year of the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Basic Science Teaching: Noam Cohen and John Seykora.
Noam Cohen is the Ralph Butler Professor of Otorhinolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery and director of rhinology research at The Perelman School of Medicine. Additionally, he is an adjunct member of The Monell Chemical Senses Center and a staff surgeon at the Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center. He obtained his medical and doctorate degrees from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1998 and completed his general surgery internship as well as his otorhinolaryngology residency (2003) and rhinology and skull base surgery fellowship (2004) at Penn. His research interests include host-microbe interactions in the upper airway in the context of upper respiratory infections and chronic rhinosinusitis. To that end, his laboratory investigates sinonasal innate defenses focusing on airway taste receptors, mucociliary clearance and solitary chemosensory cells, as well as the development of novel sinonasal topical therapies. In one of the letters of support for his nomination, a medical student who worked with him stated, “Dr. Cohen is one of the most intellectually curious, energetic and thoughtful teachers/mentors that I have ever had. He is a wonderful role model in the lab, the clinic and the OR. He encourages creative thinking backed by a solid knowledge of a subject, which leads to innovation and scientific curiosity.”
John T. Seykora is an associate professor of dermatology and pathology, having been appointed to the faculty in 2001. Dr. Seykora is recognized nationally and internationally as an outstanding clinical dermatopathologist and is one of a handful of RO1-funded academic dermatopathologists in the US. His laboratory studies cellular mechanisms regulating keratinocyte differentiation and UV-induced skin cancer. Dr. Seykora’s teaching style has been described as the “epitome of fusing basic science and clinical medicine” and he is noted for his “passion and never-ending enthusiasm” and “having an enormous impact on those that have worked with him.” Dr. Seykora’s teaching repertoire engages a broad range of learners, including high school students, undergraduates, medical students, graduate students, residents and faculty. A former MD/PhD student stated, “I have found that his mentorship has become even more valuable over time in his capacity as one of my senior faculty mentors. Dr. Seykora’s enthusiasm for teaching is absolutely infectious and his cheerful demeanor and irrepressible spirit in addition to his sharp intellect make him the best sort of teacher.”
The Dean’s Award for Excellence in Basic Science Teaching was established in 1987 to recognize teaching excellence and commitment to medical student teaching in the basic sciences. One or more Dean’s Awards are made annually, the recipients being selected on the advice of a committee composed of faculty and students.
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Medical Student Teaching by an Allied Health Professional
Stephen Prouty is a senior research investigator in the department of dermatology at PSOM, where he manages a core histology lab. Dr. Prouty is committed to the education of students, as demonstrated by his involvement in multiple teaching activities. He is a lab instructor for the gross anatomy course, where a first-year medical student commented, “His enthusiasm and commitment to the students is unparalleled. Anatomy would not have been the same without Dr. Prouty.” Dr. Prouty provides mentorship to students seeking research experience, where he teaches them tissue-based lab techniques, including laser capture microdissection. He also plays an active role in programs for high school students at Penn, including the Penn Academy for Skin Health (a community outreach program offered by the department of dermatology), the Julian Krinsky Camps and the Penn Medicine Educational Pipeline Program.
This award was established in 1996-1997 to recognize outstanding teaching by allied health professionals (e.g., nurses, physician’s assistants, emergency medical technicians). The recipient will be selected on the advice of a committee composed of faculty and students.
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching by Housestaff
Rebekah Villarreal is currently completing her final year of psychiatry residency at Penn. Since facilitating the “Doctoring” Course during her fourth year of medical school, she has sought out opportunities to engage with students from the clinic to the classroom. Friday afternoon you might find her giving a lecture on personality disorders to clerkship students, then trekking to the psych emergency room to demonstrate one-on-one interviewing techniques during a night shift. She has participated in the preclinical courses of Doctor-Patient, Brain and Behavior and Art, Observation and Mental Illness. Her primary goal in teaching is to help medical students acclimate to the clinical world in a positive and supportive manner, so that they learn to offer the same to their future patients. Two medical students commented that “Dr. Villarreal ... is both patient and encouraging and is not afraid to challenge us to push ourselves outside of our comfort zone. She creates a safe environment where we’re willing to try new things because we know she has our back even when we stumble.”
This award was established in 2015 to recognize clinical teaching excellence and commitment to medical education by outstanding housestaff. One award will be made annually. The recipient will be selected on the advice of a committee composed of faculty and students.
The Special Dean’s Award
Stanley Goldfarb, professor of medicine and associate dean for the curriculum, joined the faculty in 1975 after receiving a BA from Princeton University and an MD from the University of Rochester. He has served the School in a number of administrative roles, including his current position as associate dean for curriculum and many years as vice chair and interim chair of the department of medicine and chair of the PSOM Teaching Award Selection Committee. He has had extensive roles in medical education both at Perelman and nationally, including editorship of an educational journal of the American Society of Nephrology and current education editor of the American Journal of Kidney Diseases. In addition to his administrative duties, he has a reputation for careful teaching and accessibility to his students. One of his former residents stated, “I really enjoyed working with Dr. Goldfarb very much. His deep understanding of the physiology of electrolyte balance has brought great insight for me. His experience in the field also brought much invaluable pearls when we rounded with him.”
The Special Dean’s Award was established in 1989-1990 to recognize outstanding achievements in medical education by the school’s faculty members, particularly in the development of new, innovative educational programs. The senior vice dean for education, in consultation with the Teaching Awards Selection Committee, identifies unique contributions by the faculty, resulting in their receipt of this special honor.
The Michael P. Nusbaum Graduate Student Mentoring Award
There are two recipients of this award this year: Terri Laufer and Nandia Mitra.
Terri Laufer received her MD from College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University in 1987 and is currently an associate professor of medicine in the department of medicine. Her dedication is evident in statements from her student mentees: “She dispenses tough love, constructive criticism, sound scientific feedback, encouragement and advice, in just the right dosages, to make us better students and scientists.” “Moreover, she is an important leader and mentor to me as a woman, and inspires me to strive to be the best scientist and mentor that I can be.”
Nandita Mitra received her PhD from Columbia University in 2001 and is currently a professor in biostatistics in biostatistics and epidemiology and the graduate group chair of the epidemiology and biostatistics graduate group. Her students cite her genuine nature and dedication to mentoring as distinguishing features: “I believe the single most important characteristic which distinguishes her from other good professors is that she genuinely cares about individual students.” “I would say that Nandita puts a tremendous effort in[to] mentoring her students. However, from my perspective, it looks effortless and quite natural. Much to my benefit, she sees mentoring as an essential component of her work.”
This award was established in 2017 to honor Mikey Nusbaum as he stepped down from his role as associate dean for graduate education and director of biomedical graduate studies. Dr. Laufer and Dr. Mitra’s dedication to mentoring students and guiding them in reaching their scholarly potential exemplifies the type of scientist and mentor that Mikey Nusbaum represents.
The Jane M. Glick Graduate Student Teaching Award
This year the award is presented to Greg Bashaw, professor of neuroscience, who joined Penn in 2001. His students highlight his teaching efforts in the lab, in the classroom and beyond: “In his own lab, as a thesis advisor, Greg is an unparalleled educator.” “His commitment to teaching is evident in his extensive involvement in programs here at Penn, along with those he has developed outside of the University.” “In the classroom, Greg has a unique ability to distill complex processes.” His commitment to educating and training the next generation of scientists exemplifies the type of scientist and educator that Jane Glick represented.
This award was established in 2009 by the Glick family in remembrance of Jane Glick, PhD, and her dedication to the Biomedical Graduate Studies (BGS) programs.
Medical Student Government Awards
Each year the graduating class honors one clinician and one basic scientist in recognition of their excellence in teaching. These awards are determined by a vote of the class.
MSG Clinical Teaching Award
Prithvi Sankar, medical student director for the department of ophthalmology, teaches a wide variety of medical students in every year of their education. During the preclinical years, he coordinates the bovine eye dissection (the neuroscience course) and the ophthalmology clinical skills course. He also interacts with medical students during the ophthalmology clerkship and the OP300 month elective. He acts as the advisor for those students interested in and applying for ophthalmology.
Noted Dr. Sankar: “I love spending time with students. In the age of increasing technology, I still prefer the quiet and individual approach to teaching. This allows me to discover the needs of each student and to customize my teaching style. I also implement this individualized approach to counseling students. Each student has different perspectives, needs and goals. I meet one-on-one with each student several times during medical school. I look at these opportunities as occasions to learn about the students, calm their nerves and offer advice. Ultimately, however I am the student. My exposure to students allows me to refine and learn new techniques on education and advising.”
MSG Basic Science Teaching Award
James White is an adjunct associate professor of cell and developmental biology in the School of Medicine, where he teaches a number of introductory courses, including Gross Anatomy. He received his PhD from The Pennsylvania State University in anatomy and his BA from Lynchburg College. In addition to anatomy, Dr. White also teaches neuroscience and histology. Dr. White is universally praised as a great teacher whose excellent skills span the lecture room and the laboratory.
Creating Penn Law’s First Generation Fellows Program
Penn Law is creating a tailored program for First Generation students with the aid of David Silk (L’88). Starting next fall, the University of Pennsylvania Law School will welcome the first students accepted into the Penn Law First Generation Fellows program, which is open to those who are among the first in their families to attend graduate or professional school. The program, a first for the Law School, will support six students over six years.
Under the guidance of a team of professional advisors, Fellows will receive personal attention in law school and beyond. The Fellows will have the opportunity to learn from prominent legal professionals and participate in an exclusive speaker series.
“Fellows will enjoy personally-tailored professional development supports that include executive communication coaching, professional technology training, interaction with a team of engaged mentors, and one year of post-graduation executive coaching to smooth the transition to practice,” said Jennifer Leonard (L’04), director of Penn Law’s Center on Professionalism, which will administer the program.
Mr. Silk, who established the program, said what sets it apart is its extension through the first year of practice. “For first generation professionals the transition is as important as the formal training that preceded it,” said Mr. Silk, partner at Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz and board member of Penn Law’s Institute for Law & Economics.
The expectation is that graduates of the program will mentor students who succeed them.
Explaining his motivation for funding the program, Mr. Silk said: “I am very grateful for what Penn Law has done for me, and it is incumbent upon the University and the Law School to try to make this kind of education and opportunity available as broadly as they can to qualified students.”
Human Resources Open Enrollment: Monday, April 22-Friday, May 3, 2019
Penn Benefits Open Enrollment is your annual opportunity to make changes to your healthcare elections. While Open Enrollment is still a few weeks away, we want to give you plenty of time to learn about the upcoming changes.
There are many new developments for you to consider as you choose a plan for you and your family. Be sure to carefully review your enrollment information mailings and use the many tools and resources that Penn provides to help you make an informed decision.
Please note that this information applies to active full-time or part-time benefits-eligible faculty and staff only.
For more information about your benefits, visit www.hr.upenn.edu/openenrollment You’ll have access to benefit comparison charts, contribution charts and more.
Plan Changes as of July 1, 2019
No Increase in Medical and Dental Rates
Your cost for medical and dental coverage will not increase for the 2019-2020 plan year.
Thanks to plan design changes, favorable claims experience, enhanced prescription drug management, wellness initiatives and better employee consumerism, Penn’s faculty and staff enrolled in a medical plan will not see an increase in the 2019-2020 plan year.
Although the healthcare market in general has experienced approximately 5% medical cost inflation over the past few years, Penn’s plan costs have been much lower than the industry trend.
Enhanced Life Insurance with MetLife
On July 1, MetLife will become Penn’s life insurance provider. Penn’s Basic Life Insurance for eligible faculty and staff will continue to be 1 x your benefits base salary up to $300,000. Penn provides Basic Life Insurance coverage at no cost to you. Additionally, the cost for Supplemental Life Insurance has been significantly reduced.
A One-Time Opportunity to Increase Supplemental Life Insurance Coverage
Supplemental Life Insurance is available with coverage of up to 5 x your annual salary up to a total of $1,000,000.
MetLife offers a higher guaranteed issue for Supplemental Life Insurance. That means eligible faculty and staff have a unique opportunity to increase the amount of coverage before providing evidence of insurability (i.e. proof of good health). If your Supplemental Life Insurance coverage is at the current maximum of $500,000, you may be eligible to increase coverage up to 5 x your salary, to a maximum of $750,000, depending on your salary. If you select a coverage level above $750,000 you must provide additional evidence of insurability.
To take advantage of this opportunity, you must elect this increase during this year’s Open Enrollment period.
This spring’s Open Enrollment period will be the last one using Penn’s current benefits enrollment system.
On July 1, Workday@Penn, the University’s new human resources and payroll system, will become the benefits enrollment and administration platform. With the launch of Workday@Penn in July, your benefits elections records will automatically be transferred to a new system and you’ll be able to make beneficiary changes and declare qualifying life event changes on the convenient, state-of-the-art Workday@Penn website, www.workday.upenn.edu
Be sure to review your choices even if you plan to keep the same coverage you have now so the correct information about your selections can be transferred to the new system. After the Workday@Penn launch, healthcare benefits changes can only be made if you declare a qualifying life event.
Health Care and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)
When you participate in a Health Care FSA, you set aside pre-tax dollars to use for certain out-of-pocket healthcare costs. The IRS has increased the FSA limit from $2,650 to $2,700 for the 2019 calendar year.
This year, you will make your FSA election in the current ADP system.
Starting July 1, you can manage your Penn Health Care and Dependent Care FSA on the new, enhanced WageWorks platform. This platform upgrade will provide a better mobile experience with access to FSA apps and improved tools.
To facilitate the upgrade, you will be issued a new orange and blue debit card. You can only use the new card for your expenses incurred after July 1, 2019. Please note you can only rollover $500 to the next plan year, so be sure to submit your claims for the current plan year in a timely manner.
Health Savings Accounts (HSA) for HDHP
An HSA is a tax savings account for High Deductible Health Plan participants. HSA funds may be used to offset the cost of care. Penn will contribute to your HSA $1,000 for single coverage or $2,000 for family coverage. You can also contribute additional money to an HSA via pre-tax payroll deductions.
Penn’s Health Savings Account administration is moving from Aetna/Payflex to WageWorks. A new account will be opened for participants at BNY Mellon. During Open Enrollment, in order to establish your new account, you will be required to agree to the BNY Mellon Terms and Conditions. If you have funds in your HSA at the end of the plan year, they will be transferred to a new bank, BNY Mellon.
HDHP plan participants should watch for important notification in the mail and your email inbox. You will receive new debit cards for the 2019-2020 plan year. You can expect to receive your employer contribution in early July.
WageWorks will transfer your HSA balance to BNY Mellon by early August. BNY Mellon will add these funds to your new HSA. If you do not want these funds to be moved, you will receive instructions to opt out of the transfer and you will be responsible for managing any ongoing monthly service fees.
The IRS has announced an increase in the HSA family maximum contribution by $50 for calendar year 2019. The single contribution limit will be $3,500 and the family contribution limit will be $7,000—inclusive of your employer contribution.
Healthcare Rates for 2019-2020
| ||Full-time Weekly Paid|| || || ||Full-time Monthly Paid|| || || |
| ||Single Coverage||Emp. & Spouse||Emp. & Child(ren)||Emp. & Family||Single Coverage||Emp. & Spouse||Emp. & Child(ren)||Emp. & Family|
|MEDICAL|| || || || || || || || |
|Aetna Choice POS II||$32.31||$83.08||$54.69||$103.15||$140.00||$360.00||$237.00||$447.00|
|DENTAL|| || || || || || || || |
|Penn Family Plan||$8.77||$17.21||$19.41||$27.38||$38.02||$74.59||$84.10||$118.63|
|VISION|| || || || || || || || |
Account Rules Reminder
Penn is updating its FSA and HSA processes, however the rules for using these accounts remain the same. You may still need to provide receipts to verify that your claims are qualified expenses in accordance with IRS guidelines. The new WageWorks platform makes it easier for you to submit receipts, verify expenses and manage your accounts.
New Behavioral Health Networks for PennCare/PersonalChoice PPO & Aetna POS
Quest Behavioral Health will be the new b ehavioral health administrator for the PennCare PPO plan, replacing Penn Behavioral Health. It is important to note that all of the Penn Behavioral Health network providers are transitioning to the Quest network. Plus you may have access to additional providers from the Quest network.
Participants in the Aetna Choice POS Plan will change from the Penn Behavioral Health network to Aetna Behavioral Health network providers for services. You can check your provider’s participation with Aetna through Aetna Navigator at www.Aetna.com
If you or your dependents are currently receiving treatment through a provider who is not in the Aetna or Quest network, a transition of care plan will be developed for you.
Participants in the Aetna HDHP Plan will continue to use Aetna Behavioral Health network providers and Keystone Health Plan participants will continue to use the Magellan network.
Dermatology Screening as Preventive Care
This year Penn is adding an annual dermatology visit to the list of preventive screenings that have a $0 copay. This benefit is being added to all medical plans.
Several on-campus Open Enrollment presentations will be held where faculty and staff can learn details and ask questions about their benefits options.
Visit www.hr.upenn.edu/calendar for the schedule of presentations and fairs.
At the Wellness Fairs, representatives from Penn’s healthcare providers and wellness partners will be on-site to share information. Learn about medical plans, prescription drug coverage, dental plans, vision coverage, flexible spending accounts and the Penn Benefits Center. You can also take advantage of free health-related screenings and activities, plus learn about year-round wellness offerings for faculty and staff.
|Tuesday, April 23||9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.||Houston Hall, Hall of Flags|
|Thursday, April 25||10 a.m.-2 p.m.||New Bolton Center, Kennett Square|
Benefits Solution Center powered by Health Advocate
Effective July 1, Health Advocate will become Penn’s benefits call center service provider. The same quality service Health Advocate offers for our Employee Assistance Program and health advocacy program will be available for benefits enrollment.
You can access Health Advocate’s knowledgeable specialists by calling (866) 799-2329.