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Strategic Plan Goes Online The Columbia University Health Sciences Strategic Plan is now online at The plan presents reports from research, education, and patient care committees that identify opportunities for growth and recommended action plans at Health Sciences. Dr. Gerald Fischbach, executive vice president and dean, also offers his response to the committees' recommendations.

P&S and the New York Times Company Foundation have joined forces to offer journalists an opportunity to participate in a five-day immersion course in neuroscience—the first course of its kind designed to teach members of the media about accurately translating scientific discoveries into stories for the mass market.

"Exploring the Brain: Today's Science, Tomorrow's Headlines" will explore recent advances in neuroscience and the impact these discoveries have on understanding and treating diseases of the human brain. Thirteen journalists from a cross-section of the news media—such as ABC News, Reuters, the Associated Press, Scientific American, National Public Radio, and major U.S. newspapers—have been selected to participate in the course.

"This is the first time we've offered a course in science for journalists and we're extremely excited to be working with Columbia University," says Michael Weinstein, managing consultant of the Institutes for Journalists at the New York Times Company Foundation. "The large number of enthusiastic applications from journalists across the country proves the importance of this project. We hope to continue to work with Columbia on similar institutes in the future."

Directors of the course are Dr. Timothy A. Pedley, Henry and Lucy Moses Professor of Neurology and chairman of the Department of Neurology; Dr. John Koester, professor and acting director of the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior; and Dr. Daniel Goldberg, professor of pharmacology in the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior. They will be joined by Dr. Gerald D. Fischbach, executive vice president and dean; Dr. René Hen, associate professor of pharmacology in the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior; Dr. Thomas Jessell, professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics in the Center for Neurobiology and Behavior; Dr. Eric Kandel, University Professor and winner of the 2000 Nobel Prize in Medicine, and Dr. Richard Mayeux, Gertrude H. Sergievsky Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry, and Epidemiology and director of the Gertrude H. Sergievsky Center.

Topics include neuroscience basics, the clinical impact of basic neural sciences, genetic approaches to neurological and psychiatric illnesses, mechanisms of neurological and psychiatric diseases, imaging of brain function, and learning and memory mechanisms.

The course is taking place at Health Sciences Dec. 3 to 7.

—Annie Bayne

Alumni and BALSO Honor Gerald Thomson The P&S Alumni Association and the Black and Latin Students Organization (BALSO) honored Dr. Gerald E. Thomson, the Samuel Lambert and Robert Sonneborn Professor of Medicine and senior associate dean, on Nov. 15 at the P&S Faculty Club for his 32 years of service to P&S. Pictured presenting Dr. Thomson a book of congratulatory letters and photos taken throughout his years at P&S is Dr. Hilda Hutcherson, associate dean for diversity and minority affairs.

Helen Hayes Hospital Presents MacArthur Award The annual Helen Hayes Hospital Gala Banquet honored actor Aidan Quinn, a former patient and Rockland County activist, and philanthropist Tess McCormack-Raso with the Helen Hayes MacArthur Award at the Pearl River Hilton on Nov. 2. The honorees were selected for "helping people live their lives to their fullest potential." Pictured at the gala, from left, are Gordon Hennessy, director of health facilities management at the New York State Department of Health; Magdalena Ramirez, CEO, Helen Hayes Hospital; Aidan Quinn; Tess McCormack-Raso; and Jan Degenshein, gala committee chairman.

Celiac Patient Education Day Patients partake in gluten-free food offerings during a patient education day sponsored by Columbia's Celiac Disease Center on Nov. 2. More than 450 patients and healthcare providers attended the symposium at the Black Building's Alumni Auditorium to listen to lectures by renowned experts concerning research advances and manifestations of the disease.

College Preparation A representative from St. John's University in New York speaks with high school students enrolled in the Science and Technology Entry Program (STEP) at the School of Dental and Oral Surgery and the State College Enrichment Program (S-PREP) at P&S during Columbia's second annual college fair at Bard Hall on Nov. 16. Students from these programs and Columbia's Double Discovery programs, which all help minority and economically disadvantaged high school students learn about college in the New York area, also listened to a discussion by university graduate students at Discovery Health Day the day before.

The Kiosk A security and information kiosk, a joint venture between Columbia and NewYork-Presbyterian, has been erected on the southeast corner of 168th Street and Fort Washington Avenue. A Columbia security team member at the kiosk will provide directions, answer visitors' questions, and enhance security. Posing in the kiosk is Phebe Brunache.

Elders Get Occupational Therapy Kitchen Tool Nearly 17,000 homebound elders in New York City received Open-iT, a device that helps them open food packages, thanks to Columbia's Programs in Occupational Therapy, Citymeals-on-Wheels, and the Burden Center for the Aging, a Manhattan-based social service agency. The tool was in the Citymeals-on-Wheels emergency food package delivered to seniors before Thanksgiving.

Epilepsy Awareness Day The Comprehensive Epilepsy Center at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center presented its first annual Epilepsy Awareness Day Conference on Nov. 2 at the Clark Conference Center. The conference provided information to people with epilepsy and their family and friends about the latest treatments and research advances.

Jeannine Jennette has been named the assistant director of security for the Health Sciences campus. Before joining Columbia, Ms. Jennette was commanding officer of the New York City Police Department's 67th precinct in East Flatbush, Brooklyn.

Boaz Tadmor, who has just completed service as head of the medical department of the Israel Defense Force Homefront Command, is spending a sabbatical year at the Center for Public Health Preparedness at the Mailman School of Public Health. He is working on public health and medical preparedness.

Windsor Ting, assistant professor of surgery at P&S and attending cardiothoracic surgeon at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, co-authored the book "The Heart/Depression Connection" with Gregory Forcchione, an attending in psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital. The book, dealing with patients who suffer depression following open-heart surgery, was published by McGraw Hill.