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SSmithA Doctor of Health Science student is heading for a major federal position in Washington, D.C., following his graduation in March 2014. Stewart Smith, DHSc ‘14, has been selected as chief of staff, Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Health Service Corps (IHSC).

IHSC staff comprises more than 900 U.S. Public Health Service commissioned officers, federal civil servants and contract support staff.  IHSC provides direct care to approximately 15,000 detainees treated at 21 Health Maintenance Organization (HMO)-designated medical facilities throughout the nation. In addition, IHSC oversees medical care provided to an additional 17,000 detainees housed at non-IHSC-staffed detention centers across the country. 

In his new position, Smith will confer with the assistant director, deputy assistant directors, branch chiefs, inter-agency representatives, IHSC leadership and with key staff regarding problem areas and projected major changes within healthcare operations.  Other responsibilities include:

  • Managing budget and finances for Washington headquarters and 21 federal medical clinics.
  •  Monitoring and evaluating IHSC programs, plans, products, analytical efforts and operations to assure that plans are followed or modified to meet objectives, goals and strategic direction.
  • Managing operations within the day-to-day conduct of the IHSC staff programs and mission elements.

“Stewart has a long and respected history of working in emergency preparedness and response and is well-equipped to take on this exciting and prominent position with the government in homeland security,” said Helen Ewing, DHSc, RN, director, ATSU Interdisciplinary Health Sciences – Doctor of Health Sciences. “We are proud of Stewart’s accomplishments and know he is going to be a huge asset to the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Health Service Corps.” 


EndtheRwordWorking with Maureen Romer, DDS, MPA, director of special care dentistry and associate dean, post-doctoral education, A.T. Still University’s Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ATSU-ASDOH), and the Center for Advanced Oral Health, the ATSU American Academy of Developmental Medicine and  Dentistry (AADMD) student chapter has developed the first of many End the R-Word campaign events on the Mesa, Ariz. campus.

The campaign serves to create awareness of the derogatory use of the R-word (retard or retarded) and its negative effects on people with intellectual disabilities, as well as their families and friends. More than 100 students, faculty, staff, and community members have signed the banner and pledged to stop the use of the R-word.


NOWPAStudents at ATSU-KCOM observed Violence Against Women Awareness Week on Nov. 12-16, 2013.

The National Osteopathic Women Physicians Assocation, Gay Straight Alliance, and Ob-Gyn Club hosted several events which were open to the University and the Kirksville, Mo. community.

Events included a presentation from Kim Lebaron with Victim Support Services, who spoke on “Violence Against Women: The Physicians Role, a self-defense class, and a supply drive for Victim Support Services.


ATSU’s Physical Therapy Program and the Mesa Fire and Medical Department (MFMD) have implemented a unique collaboration in an effort to decrease injuries among the Mesa fire force. Doctor of physical therapy students and physical therapy faculty will monitor, evaluate, and correct movement patterns of various fire ground activities.

Students work directly with firefighter recruits by providing functional movement screenings, joint mobility assessment and occasional opportunities for private consultations regarding aches, pains, and muscle or body functions.

“Students have the opportunity to develop a better understanding of working with the industrial athlete,” said Cory Manton, DPT, assistant professor, ATSU’s Arizona School of Health Sciences. “They will learn first-hand about the physical demands of being a firefighter and how those demands impact the musculoskeletal system.”

This continued collaboration—unique to Arizona—also supports the City of Mesa’s goal of utilizing public and private partnerships to enhance service delivery to both our internal and external customers. This  collaboration supports the city’s “HEAT” initiative, which stands for healthcare, education, aerospace, tourism, and technology.

James Johnson, MFMD captain, says the ultimate goal is to decrease injuries as well as the loss of time and expenditures associated with injuries.

Dr. Manton says a significant highlight of this partnership is that students gain hands-on experience working with their local public safety organizations. “Students are actively training these men and women to adopt more-efficient movement patterns to decrease the risk of injury.”

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SonFirst-year A.T. Still University’s School of Osteopathic Medicine (ATSU-SOMA) students are learning how to care for the homeless population of Phoenix through their volunteer involvement with Circle the City.Founded by Sister Adele O’Sullivan, CSJ, MD, Circle the City is Arizona’s first medical respite center and provides care to people experiencing homelessness in metro Phoenix. Through collaboration with area hospitals, Circle the City provides homeless people with a place to heal after hospitalization.

Under the guidance of Sharon Obadia, DO, assistant professor and director of medical skills for OMS1 and OMS2 courses, ATSU-SOMA, one first-year student per month accompanies Dr. Obadia, who volunteers at Circle the City.  Students who participate are also required to be a member of ATSU-SOMA’s Health Disparities Interest Group, which was started by students in 2011.Currently, ATSU-SOMA is the only medical school with participating students at Circle the City.

As a physician, I feel strongly that role-modeling working with homeless patients is a great way to get students thinking about doing the same when they go out into practice,” said Dr. Obadia. “At the clinic, the students are able to practice and develop their history-taking, physical exam and OMT skills under faculty supervision.”

Esther Son, OMS1, ATSU-SOMA, accompanied Dr. Obadia to Circle the City in October.  At the 50-bed facility, she met a man in his 40s who had been in the hospital for wound care on his foot and was referred to Circle the City.  Son, who plans to go into primary care and work with the underserved after graduation, was able to observe dressing changes as well as provide OMT to the patient.

“This is an amazing and unique place,” said Son. “Not only was I able to have the mentoring of Dr. Obadia for working with patients, but I was able to experience different health professionals working together for the benefit of patients. Patients are truly blessed to be at Circle the City.”

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