June 27, 2011

Dear Faculty, Staff, and Students:

College Updates

Friday night we celebrated and honored the accomplishments of 28 interns and residents at an annual dinner and recognition ceremony. Besides being indispensable to the clinical operations of the VMC, we also recognize the critical role of our house officers in the education and training of our DVM students. We thank them for all they have done for our college and wish these interns and residents well as they go on to the next stage of their career.

We have kicked off our Summer Research Program. This summer's class – 48 students - is the largest student research program in the country. Students are engaged in projects that include cancer and retrovirus research, clinical studies, wildlife and conservation medicine, and more. Some of our students will be traveling to Cameroon, Thailand, Ethiopia, and Nepal. Others will be working here in laboratories and traveling to farms across the state of Ohio. Students will participate in weekly brown bag discussions, go on field trips, and many will travel to the University of Florida for the Merial/NIH National Symposium. http://vet.osu.edu/research/veterinary-scholar-summer-research-program

Last week, our college hosted 66 candidates for the board-certification examination for the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. We thank to Dr. Gary Bowman, associate professor in Veterinary Preventive Medicine, for his work organizing this two-day event for the past several years. It provides recognition for Ohio State to be able to host the exam, and we appreciate Dr. Bowman's effort to make it possible.

Dr. Wondwossen Gebreyes, associate professor in Veterinary Preventive Medicine, is making great strides organizing the first International Congress on Pathogens at the Human-Animal Interface (ICOPHAI), which is being held at the United Nations Conference Center, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, September 15-17. Last week, we had the opportunity to speak with His Excellency Girma Woldegiorgis, president of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, about the event. He has agreed to speak at the event, and welcome all guests to the congress and host a reception for attendees. It was an honor to speak with him, and we are proud of Dr. Gebreyes for making such important connections, which will help ensure success for this important event. Several Ohio State leaders will be speaking at the congress, and deadline for abstract submission is June 30. More information is available at: http://icophai2011.org/

Campus Updates and Partnerships

The deans of the seven health sciences colleges are continuing to work together to find areas for collaboration. We met recently with Christine Poon, dean of the Fisher College of Business to discuss inter-professional training opportunities. We are particularly interested in adding business competencies to enhance skills for our students, in addition to their proficiency in the technical skills. We may have an opportunity to share some of this business training across the health science colleges.

Off-Campus Partnerships

A group recently met with alumnus Colonel Don Noah, deputy commander of the United States Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine at Wright Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton. Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine Chair Bill Saville and faculty members Drs. Wondwossen Gebreyes, Tom Wittum, and Armando Hoet discussed areas of collaboration with Dr. Noah. He called their new facility near Dayton the "largest DOD building project since World War II." We are fortunate to have an alumnus in such a prestigious position, and such a state-of-the-art facility so close to our campus. We look forward to continuing discussions of shared projects and goals.

We attended the recent Columbus Zoo and Aquarium's annual fundraising event, "Zoofari." We have a great relationship with zoo veterinarians, and our students enjoy many opportunities to learn more about zoo and other exotic wildlife through our partnerships with them. Attending events such as these offers an important demonstration of our support.

State and National Issues

The National Bio-surveillance Advisory Subcommittee has released its final report. I was a member of the committee, which provided advice and recommendations to assess and define bio-surveillance efforts in the context of detecting and mitigating health-related threats. For the first time, recommendations have been incorporated that create a new national strategy requiring surveillance of food animals and food animal products as part of the traditional human health surveillance system in the U.S. This will allow detection of numerous threats that can harm people, and are not obvious in the current surveillance system that only looks at people. For example, the earlier detection of emerging zoonotic diseases will provide greater ability to prevent the spread of diseases and mitigate harmful effects in humans.

The U.S. Northern Command, which provides command and control of Department of Defense (DOD) homeland defense efforts, recently held a One Health conference. I provided a keynote address, "One Health: A New Paradigm to Addressing Emerging Infectious Diseases." Our military takes threats of emerging diseases very seriously, and are examining detection, spread, and mitigation of infectious diseases that could erode military effectiveness.

Alumni and Fundraising

We recently hosted a reception to thank the Midmark Corporation for their generous support of our new dental suite. Faculty, staff, and students in our VMC and Community Practice Service welcomed Dr. Anne Klamar, CEO, and Dr. Rob Klamar, along with representatives from Midmark's Animal Health Division: Mike Walker, vice president; Matt Bourne, director of sales; and Pete Wenning, regional sales representative. We are proud to have built an excellent relationship that led to their generous gift. Dental services are often under-utilized as an essential service for companion animals, and this new equipment will enable our Community Practice Service to provide more services to our patients. In addition, our students will benefit from being trained on this state-of-the-art equipment.

Drs. John Hubbell, Rustin Moore, Danielle Ford and I attended an event in Lexington, Kentucky. This is part of our on-going effort to re-connect with alumni from our college. I want to thank Danielle Ford, development officer, for her assistance in planning this event, as well as Dr. Steve Reed, an alumnus of our college and former faculty member in the Galbreath Equine Center. The event was held at Darby Dan Farms, owned by Beth and John Phillips, grandson of John Galbreath, (for whom the Galbreath Equine Center is named). We have many alumni connections in the Lexington area, and many friends of the college who are associated with the Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital and other equine specialty practices in the Lexington area. We look forward to working with them more closely in the future.

Dean Lonnie King