The medical and dental school students from the Class of 2014 have chosen Dr. Melinda Sanders, chair of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, to receive this year’s Loeser Award.
During a May 4 ceremony in Massey Auditorium, second-year student Zac Cavanaugh presented the award thanking Sanders for her dedication to the students and more than 20 years of service to UConn.
“I had the opportunity to be in her small group session for histopathology this year and I watched as the amount of people in the class grew,” said Cavanaugh. “The reason for that is because she made histopathology fun. And I’m going to repeat that in case you didn’t hear me….she made histopathology fun.”
The Loeser award is given to the faculty member who has the ability to evoke in students an enthusiasm for learning, a desire to emulate their own attributes of scholarly curiosity, and to give wholeheartedly to advance the welfare and education of their students. The award is named after Charles N. Loeser, one of the Health Center’s most popular and respected first faculty members.
The Committee Award for Meritorious Educational Leadership (C.A.M.E.L.) was given to Dr. Raymond Foley, associate professor of medicine. The C.A.M.E.L. is given to the subject committee that “promotes a stimulating learning experience and, in its organization, presentation of material and overall level of teaching, has afforded the students an invaluable opportunity to learn and understand basic medical sciences.”
Second-year dental student Katie Schultz presented the award saying the students appreciated Foley’s hard work and accessibility. “Like answering emails from panicky students such as myself, making sure the conference leaders always showed up to the right rooms, and ensuring that the information presented would optimally prepare us for boards, clinic and for life.”
Awards were also given to five faculty members in recognition of their excellence in teaching basic medical sciences: Drs. Dan Henry, Thomas Manger, Louise McCullough, James Watras and Richard Zeff.
Board of Directors Faculty Recognition Award
Dr. Steven Lepowsky, senior associate dean for education and patient care at the UConn School of Dental Medicine, has been awarded the 2012 Faculty Recognition Award by the UConn Health Center Board of Directors.
Lepowsky is credited with being a driving force in the growth and expansion of the Advanced Education in General Dentistry (AEGD) residency program, now the largest of its kind in the United States. He also has been influential in the development and expansion of community-based activity throughout Connecticut, initiating resident placement in community sites, having an active role in predoctoral students’ community-based experiences, and recruiting and placing junior clinical faculty through contractual arrangements with community sites.
Lepowsky also is responsible for a significant expansion of patient care to adults with acquired and developmental disabilities, between direct patient care and partnerships he initiated with the Connecticut Department of Developmental Services. He also is a senior consultant to the Commission on Dental Accreditation and serves as a liaison to the Connecticut Department of Public Health and Department of Social Services.
He also was instrumental in establishing the Connecticut Comprehensive Education and Practice Team, which opened in the UConn Health Partners West Hartford office last fall.
“I am extremely honored to be the recipient of this very special award,” Lepowsky says. “It is particularly rewarding to be recognized for doing what you love to do.”
He will be presented with the award during commencement exercises Sunday at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford.
Lepowsky joined the UConn Health Center faculty in 1993 as an assistant professor and director of advanced education in general dentistry. He was promoted to associate professor in 2001. He accepted the additional role of the dental school’s associate dean for clinical affairs in 2003, and became associate dean for education and patient care in 2007. Lepowsky was promoted to senior associate dean last year. He also has served as chair of the Division of General Dentistry since January 2005.
The Faculty Recognition Award, presented annually since 2003, recognizes academic, administrative and/or clinical excellence.