MCOM faculty members awarded for educational excellence

Several outstanding  faculty members were recognized for their contributions to educational excellence and dedication to student success at the USF Morsani College of Medicine Awards Reception held April 23 at the Lifsey House.

Stanley Nazian, PhD, professor of molecular pharmacology and physiology, received the Outstanding Lifetime Educational Excellence Award, which recognizes sustained educational excellence over a career at MCOM with a $5,000 stipend.

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Stanley Nazian, PhD, center, accepts the Outstanding LIfetime Educational Excellence Award from MCOM’s Dr. Harry van Loveren and USF President Judy Genshaft.

Dr. Nazian, who joined USF as an assistant professor of physiology in 1979, will retire this summer.  His leadership and commitment to educational excellence contributed to the success of both the undergraduate medical education and the graduate programs at USF’s medical school.

The following are just a few of Dr. Nazian’s accomplishments cited by those nominating him for the lifetime award:  pioneered the development of educational resources; organized and directed the Interdisciplinary Sciences Medical Sciences Master’s Program serving as a pipeline for disadvantaged students seeking an advanced degree; organized the college’s first Scholarly Concentration (in medical education); proposed reorganization of the year 1 curriculum from independent discipline-based courses to system-based integrated courses and worked with fellow faculty to implement the interdisciplinary model;  played an integral role in helping implement USF Health’s nationally-recognized Doctor of Physical Therapy curriculum; and collaborated with several USF faculty members on course assessments and methodology research, which led to multiple publications and presentations at national and international medical education meetings.


Dr. Drew Keiser, recipient of the Innovation in Teaching Award, spoke at the awards reception via video message from the Lehigh Valley campus.

Drew Keister, MD, assistant professor of family medicine at the Lehigh Valley campus, received the Award for Innovation in Teaching, which recognizes outstanding innovative teaching in support of MCOM educational initiatives with a $2500 stipend.

Dr. Keister has been a leader in developing SELECT, the futuristic medical education program created by USF and LehighValley Health Network.  His innovations, cited in nomination letters, include:  creating the longitudinal curriculum of the primary care clerkship; integrating SELECT competencies such as leadership, values-based, patient-centered care and health systems into the primary care clerkship experience; advocating and helping design a clerkship for the SELECT medical students’ third year (MS3 SELECT) that places greater emphasis on outpatient/community-based care for all specialties, not just primary care.

Nine faculty members received the Dean’s Recognition of Teaching Excellence Awards, recognized with stipends of $250 each.  They were:

–          Summer J. Decker, PhD, assistant professor of radiology

–          David Ecker, MD, assistant professor of internal medicine

–          Vinita C. Kiluk, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics

–          Mudra K. Kumar, MD, associate professor of pediatrics

–          Kellee Oller, MD, assistant professor of internal medicine

–          Tapan A. Padhya, MD, professor of otolaryngology

–          Rose M. Ortega Pignataro, PhD, DPT, assistant professor, School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences

–          Daniel Poetter, MD, assistant professor of internal medicine

–          Kira Zwygart, MD, associate professor of family medicine

Photos by Rebekah Wright, USF Health Morsani College of Medicine