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Support at talent show earns BRIDGE Clinic $2,000

They came out in full support for the BANDaids for B.R.I.D.G.E. Talent Show, held Jan. 7 at the Straz Center in downtown Tampa. The sold-out event featured 30 acts performed by Morsani College of Medicine students, faculty, physicians, and staff.

photo of performers

In addition to the performances, the talent show featured a silent auction, a cocktail hour, and a red carpet entrance for guests. Emcees for the night were Dr. Stephen Klasko, dean of the Morsani College of Medicine and CEO of USF Health, and Madeline Snyder, a first-year medical student and director of the talent show. Also attending were Mr. and Mrs. Morsani, the generous family for whom the College was named.

The concerted effort to help a good cause meant a fun and creative night, but it also resulted in donations totaling $2,000 for the BRIDGE Clinic, a student-directed free medical clinic that serves the underserved community just west of the USF campus.

Snyder and fellow student Suroosh Marzban recently presented the $2000 check to the BRIDGE Clinic, which will put it toward clinic supplies and medical procedures and different family events that the clinic hosts, including their annual banquet.

Signs of the talent show success came early when students “advertised” for it last last fall by performing a flash mob song and dance in the middle of a lecture in the auditorium. The video of the flash mob performance has gotten more than 1,000 views on YouTube, Snyder said.

The night of the show, USF Health talent blossomed. The event fostered the beginning of USF Morsani COM’s first and only glee club, called The BANDaids. The glee club has already performed as a group at an AAMC conference in Clearwater Beach recently, and also the Morsani COM Scholarship Dinner, Snyder said.

“The BANDaids plan on performing at local hospitals and charity events in the community, and the group is looking forward to improving the wellness of our school and community through performance and creativity,” she said.

Judges for the evening were: Ms. Cynthia Stevens Gries (director of local performing group, Entertainment Revue), Mr. Tom Pepin (President and CEO of Pepin Distributing), and Mr. Ronald Hytoff (President and CEO of Tampa General Hospital).

Mr. and Mrs. Morsani handed out the trophies to the winners, who were: Steven Spence (first place); Madeline Snyder (second place); and Michael Manasterski/Sam Shusko and Dan Restrepo/Gene Peir (who tied for third place).

The overall success means the talent show will now be an annual event in support of the BRIDGE clinic, Snyder said.

“Next year’s BANDaids for BRIDGE talent show event will be even bigger and better and will be held at the Pepin Hopsitality Center with support from Mr. Tom Pepin,” she said.

The Talent show planning committee included: Madeline Snyder (director), Suroosh Marzban (“Talent Scout”), Mia Dbulbegovic, Jori Kaplan, Michelle Rosario, Sean Bradley, Kevin Cronin, Kristen Byers, Jennifer Harb, Adam Schwartz, Kirk Chassey (all current freshman medical students).