Message from the Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine

We are in the holiday season with our American Thanksgiving a recent memory and plans for holidays of several traditions filling the calendar for December and early January. I recognize the holidays can bring a variety of stresses, but I hope each of us can find a few gratitude moments where we can celebrate some of the special aspects of our lives. Looking at items in this newsletter, I see many things to celebrate such as national awards by our faculty like the AAIM Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion award given to Dr. Jasmine Marcelin and the John Ultmann Award for Outstanding Contributions to Lymphoma Research given to Dr. Julie Vose by the Lymphoma, Leukemia, and Myeloma International Congress. Please check out the awards section to learn of more recent awards and the “in the news section” to see how our faculty are impacting the greater community. In addition, we celebrate that all our residents who applied for fellowships to start in July 2024 have matched and, fortunate for us, many will be staying here at UNMC.

We are starting the search for a new Division Chief of Infectious Diseases since Dr. Rupp has decided that it is time to transition out of that role. He won’t be retiring and will stay in the position until the new chief is appointed. While we will celebrate his many accomplishments as chief later and I am so grateful for the great leadership he has been providing and the very strong position of the division as we look for the new leader. In a time when many ID fellowship programs did not fill in the recent match, our ID fellowship did fill and that is a testament to the wonderful educational opportunities that they provide and are readily apparent to applicants.

The rheumatology division had a great showing at the annual American College of Rheumatology meeting in November. I understand they had 12 medical students at the meeting presenting in addition to many presentations by fellows and faculty. Congratulations to the division for representing UNMC so well! I encourage divisions to let Maria or I know about your involvement at national meetings as they happen throughout the year.

I am pleased to welcome Dr. Chelsea Navarrette to the new role of Associate Vice Chair for Equity and Inclusive Excellence starting in January. She will be assisting Dr. Marcelin in further developing our efforts to assure equity and inclusion in the department.

Some upcoming opportunities are highlighted including the opportunity to have an undergraduate student work on a research project with you next summer. If you have college students asking you about opportunities for research in the department, please point them to the UNMC SURP (Summer Undergraduate Research Program) to apply. Also note the opportunity to apply for our department’s Scientist Development award will soon be here.

Hope to see you at Grand Rounds on December 8 when we will hear from department faculty whose publications have earned Publication of the Quarter recognition this past year. This is a wonderful way to learn more of the scholarly activity happening in the department.

I am ever grateful for all that each of you do to further the work of the department. Thank you! All the best as we approach the holiday season.

Dr. Deb Romberger