Valubility of the Month: March 2021

May 16, 2021 • VOTM

Emily Zakhary – TCOM Student (Class of 2021)Emily Zakhary

Emily was commended by a community member for her outstanding customer service:
“Good afternoon. I want to compliment your employee, Emily Zakhary, for her outstanding customer service. On Thursday, February 11th around noon, I called to see where my husband is on the Covid-19 vaccination list. He registered for the vaccine in mid-January through the Tarrant Co. Public Health website and wanted to get some idea of the timeframe for his first vaccine. After holding on the phone for two hours, I had the nicest experience with Emily. She was extraordinarily helpful and has great customer service skills. I know everyone at the UNTHSC is extremely busy right now, but Emily was gracious, helpful, and thoroughly knowledgeable about the process. After the two hours, when I finally got through to a person, (and luckily for me, that person was Emily) the call dropped!
I’m sure you can share my frustration when that happened. However, Emily came to the rescue…she called me right back, not once, but twice (the call dropped the first time)! Most people simply would have taken the next call, and let me wait another two hours. But not Emily! She is the epitome of outstanding customer service. Interestingly, after finally connecting and beginning our conversation, there was an echo on the line…so everything I said and everything Emily said was being repeated throughout our conversation. Thoroughly frustrating, but no one’s fault. Emily handled the situation with grace, patience, compassion, and great customer service skills.
Her empathy and understanding were outstanding; two skills I know are critical for her chosen profession. I have no doubt Emily will be very successful in her medical career.”
This student also serves as an employee in the Division of Student & Academic Affairs as a tutor, on top of her rigorous curriculum. This situation exemplifies her outstanding contribution to the HSC and our community.

Nominated by Dr. Trisha VanDuser (on behalf of a community member) for Serve Others First

Lisa Killam-Worrall – PharmacotherapyLisa Killam Worrall

Lisa has made significant impacts at UNTHSC. As an Associate Dean for Pharmacy Curriculum (since 2018), she oversees our didactic and experiential curriculum. In this regard, she and her team work on integration and innovation within the program and develops, implements and refine policies and procedures pertaining to the curriculum. Lisa and her team working with our faculty have done an amazing job. Given that we have so far graduated only four classes, our NAPLEX and MPJE exams results have consistently been above state and national averages. Another metric of note is that over 90% of our students expressed satisfaction with the relevance of our curriculum. Another example of her service to others, is her leadership during COVID-19 and the transition of our educational efforts from in-class, in-person, in-labs to completely online teaching and testing. Also, as hospitals started to stop taking students for their IPPE and APPE rotations, it was Lisa working with her team who helped us to calmly and safely navigate through the storm to allow us to complete their Spring semester without any delays, and to get our P4 students graduated. She has been a steady and friendly support for our faculty and students throughout these extraordinary times.

Lisa is a top-notch professional who is dedicated, motivated, and tireless, and committed to serving the HSC and pharmacy profession through her practice and education efforts.

Nominated by Dr. Suresh Madhavan for Serve Others First

Shawn Haley – Police DepartmentShawn Haley

A patient was waiting outside the Health Pavilion for an hour for her ride (around 6pm). I happened to walk by and ask her if she needed help and she said her Medicaid ride was supposed to come. After calling her ride to help her figure it out, I was told she had to wait another 2 hours in 50 degree temp outside for someone to get her. I called the UNTHSC PD Dept to ask them if they could sit with her or keep an eye to make sure her ride came and she was okay and Shawn offered to give her a courtesy ride home since she lived close by. This was incredibly generous and kind and touched my heart (and the patients) at their compassion. Our PD supports the clinics so well and live the values in their constant dedication to the mission of our organization.

Nominated by Subhada Kambhampaty for Serve Others First

Patricia Dossey & Sheila Harris – Facilities AdministrationSheila HarrisPatricia Dossey

When the TRHA and GHI spring break mission trip was on the verge of being swept up in the cancel culture, an email plea was sent to several campus offices seeking ideas. Patricia Dossey was the first to respond with clarity, a solution, and a plan-of-action that included her co-worker Sheila Harris. Working against the clock, with grace and dignity, a cargo van was borrowed, approved driver statuses bestowed, and information regarding rental policies for passenger vans was enacted. With a quick verification from Cory Ward in purchasing, the TRHA-GHI student doctors were able to safely and securely provide free wellness clinics in four remote, rural Texas locations during spring break. The cargo van, aptly named “Henri S Cargo” (HSC) carried much needed supplies, and luggage between sites. At the various sites, Henri (Henry for Texans) was used as a consultation area, a lunch prep station, an office, charging station, laboratory, and supply closet. Without Sheila and Patricia being conscientious collaborators, none of this could have happened. Their response times to emails was exceptional; their patience with the seemingly endless questions we posed was professional yet validating for the undertaking. Patricia and Sheila, even with the uncertainty of wifi and cell signals from the furthest reaches of Texas, were sincere in their wishes for a safe trip and expressions of support. And all of this was occurring as the campus was recovering from the February Freeze amidst the continued campus closures for the pandemic – yet there was never a delay, a hesitation, nor even a “wait-and-see” – simply an attitude of collaboration and compassion.

Nominated by Ann Smith for Collaboration

Dr. Spencer Smith – Academic Affairs-TCOM

Dr. Smith has dedicated hundreds of hours to create a fully fleshed out curriculum for medical students at all levels of their education. These are not simple power points, but expansive presentations which represent a truly massive visual library of information regarding radiology with thorough explanations of the who, what, when, when, where, why, and how. These images have custom-made labels and manually drawn highlighted animations which demonstrate anatomy and pathology on images in pain-staking detail. During our discussions, he is openly engaged with students and strongly encourages educated guesses, even if wrong and incorrect answers are never treated with disdain or make students feel embarrassed for having spoken up. He is not only consistently timely with his presentations and e-mail communications, but he freely opens his schedule up for additional discussion should students want to explore topics further. He also takes particular note of student’s specialty interest and tries to tie imaging in to their field, if applicable (e.g. presenting 10 images for discussion, 2 of which are emergencies, and assigning 2 students interested in emergency medicine to those 2 cases).
In short, he is remarkably respectful of students and our education, freely welcomes and encourages discussion, is punctual and flexible with schedules, and promotes mutual respect and trust. TCOM students will go into their clinical rotations and intern year of residency with substantial advantage compared to their peers when it comes to ordering, interpreting, and discussing radiology. While I greatly admire and respect all TCOM faculty, some truly stand out as not only knowledgeable but also kind, patient, effective professors that give me pause to think, “This is the kind of teacher I’d like to be”.

Nominated by Travis Odom for Respect