Awards and More

Issue Date: 
January 21, 2013

Jeremy M. Berg has been named founding director of The Institute for Personalized Medicine, a new endeavor established by the University of Pittsburgh schools of the health sciences and UPMC to focus on the development of individualized disease treatments and prevention approaches. Berg is a professor of computational and systems biology in the Pitt School of Medicine, as well as associate senior vice chancellor for science strategy and planning in the Pitt schools of the health sciences.

Richard E. Debski, a professor of bioengineering in Pitt’s Swanson School of Engineering with a secondary appointment in the Pitt School of Medicine’s Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, has been elected a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He researches the biomechanics of shoulders and knees as director of the Robotics Group in Pitt’s Musculoskeletal Research Center.  

Professor John Jakicic, chair of the Department of Health and Physical Activity in Pitt’s School of Education, was honored last month with a national award for
his research in the field of obesity. He received the Albert J. Stunkard Founders Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement in Obesity Research from the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Weight and Eating Disorders. Jakicic has published three first-authored papers in the Journal of the American Medical Association, including a recent paper concerning the intensity of lifestyle modification needed to achieve clinically significant weight loss. Jakicic’s previous work has focused on the use of technology, such as text messaging, to support weight-loss efforts.   

George Stetten, a professor of bioengineering in Pitt’s Swanson School of Engineering, has been awarded a Research to Prevent Blindness Innovative Ophthalmic Research Award. This award, established in 2011, provides flexible funding to basic scientists actively engaged in “innovative, out-of-the-box” research in collaboration with the researcher institution’s department of ophthalmology—in Stetten’s case, the Pitt School of Medicine’s Department of Ophthalmology. Stetten is one of six researchers at six institutions who have received the award since 2011. He also serves as a research professor at the Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Institute and is director of Pitt and CMU’s Visualization and Image Analysis Laboratory and the Music Engineering Laboratory.

Pitt’s Student Health Service has received a score of 99.4 percent from the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care after an in-depth evaluation of its health care policies, processes, and practices during the fall semester of 2012-13. The association evaluated a total of 628 standards of patient care, from administrative and clinical operations to pharmacy and health education programs.