NEWS BLOG from UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

Archive for November, 2016

UPMC Recognizes Talent in Veterans


Veterans return home with a unique set of skills and experiences that make them an asset in the workforce. As an employer of more than 1,200 veterans, UPMC never lets those talents go unnoticed.

UPMC’s Military Talent Network is designed to bring talented veterans to UPMC and support them in their employment search. Once a veteran expresses interest in working at UPMC, the veteran is connected with a member of the UPMC recruitment team to assist in matching his or her military-acquired skills to employment opportunities at UPMC. This program offers vets career advice, job recommendations, and insight into UPMC’s hiring practices.

Anthony Stough, UPMC talent acquisition recruiter, was hired through the Military Talent Network. He served the U.S. Army in 2010 as a human resources manager in active duty for four years, and in the reserves for two years. Stough joined the Military Talent Network in 2015, and was immediately contacted by Laura Swinchock, the manager of the program.

A few months and interviews later, he joined UPMC Talent Acquisition as a recruiter.

“When I made the decision to transition into a civilian career I knew it would be no easy task – a mixture of ‘over-qualifications’ and ‘under-qualifications’ initially kept me from being able to start a new career,” Stough said. “Often times, veterans are left with very few resources during the transition, and end up underutilized or overwhelmed in their new roles. UPMC developed the Military Talent Network to guide veterans such as me with this transition, and properly ensure that we get the assistance we needed for civilian jobs and careers.”

UPMC also works with two national organizations that assist veterans with job searches. Hiring Our Heroes helps veterans, transitioning service members and military spouses find meaningful employment opportunities. RecruitMilitary hosts job fairs connecting veteran career-seekers and exhibitors.

Additionally, UPMC is part of the 100,000 Jobs Mission, a national organization whose goal was to help 100,000 veterans find employment by 2020. Since companies have exceeded the original goal and hired more than 161,000 individuals, the new ambitious goal is to hire 200,000 veterans in the same time frame.

UPMC has also developed community partnerships with many veterans’ organizations, including the Department of Veteran Affairs, Duquesne University – Veteran Nurse Recruiters, Goodwill of Southwestern PA, PA Career Link, Pittsburgh Serves, Robert Morris Veterans Outreach Center, University of Pittsburgh, Veteran Services Office, Veterans Leadership Program, Veterans Place and Wounded Warriors.

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Pittsburgh Steelers Cook with Breast Cancer Warriors at Magee

Three players from the Pittsburgh Steelers recently demonstrated their ability to work as a team off the field at Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC’s annual healthy cooking demonstration. In support of breast cancer awareness month, Travis Feeney, Arthur Moats and Roosevelt Nix replaced their jerseys with white chef coats for the afternoon to show off their culinary skills.

The players discussed the importance of eating healthy during the football season to boost metabolism and fuel their bodies. Common foods in their diets are fish, grilled chicken, greens and a lot of water. Similar to athletics, good nutrition is essential to breast cancer survival. Healthy cooking is often associated with low flavor and a heavy time commitment, however, the players demonstrated the simplicity of cooking a delicious, healthy recipe. With assistance from Magee’s executive chef, Victor Mannella, the players cooked butternut cranberry salad and garden tortellini. They worked as a team to combine the optimal ratio of ingredients to create the perfect flow.

After the cooking event, patients and survivors lined up for pictures and autographs from the players, but the players weren’t the only ones giving autographs. Feeney, Moats and Nix wanted all the Magee patients to sign their chef coats as a memory of their culinary experience. One of the patients said the experience made her feel as important as the Pittsburgh Steelers feel on game days. All three players have individual reasons for participating in breast cancer awareness events, but they collectively agreed they feel rewarded when attending awareness events.

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Wendy King Receives Prestigious Award for Bariatric Surgery Research


Wendy King, Ph.D., of the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, has been awarded the Circle of Excellence Award from the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). The award was recently presented at the group’s annual conference luncheon to recognize and honor a member who has made a significant and meaningful contribution to the Integrated Health Sciences Section of the ASMBS.

King has studied a wide array of outcomes resulting from bariatric surgery over the past decade, including the positive effects of surgery on pain, physical function, urinary incontinence, fertility, sexual function and depressive symptoms, and more recently has focused on safety concerns including substance use disorder, prescribed opioid use and suicide.

“I was touched to learn that I was nominated for the Circle of Excellence Award by my highly-respected colleague and a former president of the ASMBS, Dr. Bruce Wolfe,” King said. “The Integrated Health section of ASMBS is an inspiring group of health professionals dedicated to education, research, public awareness and advocacy, as well as patient care.”

Wolfe, of the Oregon Health and Science University, described King’s qualifications in his nomination letter as “scholarly, compassionate and dedicated to the care and treatment of severe obesity through her research and service to the ASMBS.” He noted that she has demonstrated a “high degree of productivity and credibility, and is highly respected and admired by the membership from top to bottom.”

“We have presented this award for the past 16 years and recipients’ contributions to integrated health can span the areas of education, research, public awareness and patient care,” said Christine Bauer, president of ASMBS Integrated Health Sciences Section. “But, what spoke to me the most in Dr. Wolfe’s nomination was his enthusiasm for her scholarly research, compassionate approach and dedication to the care and treatment of severe obesity.” (more…)

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Magee Director Selected to Represent Infusion Nurses

UPMC is proud to announce that Linda Ankrom, director of Magee’s CancerCenter, infusion center and breast and ovarian risk assessment and prevention program, was named the 2016 finalist to represent infusion nurses in Johnson & Johnson’s Campaign for Nursing’s Future, a public-awareness campaign focused on addressing the nursing shortage in the United States.

For almost 15 years, Johnson & Johnson has shared stories about nurses across the country, celebrating the nursing profession while educating others on the many types of nursing careers available.

* Video courtesy of the Johnson & Johnson Campaign for Nursing’s Future (

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Platicas Comunitarias = Community Talks: Pitt Public Health and Partners Engage Pittsburgh Latinos

Latinos make up less than 2 percent of Allegheny County’s population, yet their numbers have increased 71 percent in the past decade. The results of a new effort to learn from this growing population will be shared today at the American Public Health Association 2016 Annual Meeting & Exposition in Denver.

The University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health’s Center for Health Equity partnered with The Latino Family Center and Casa San Jose, the region’s two main service organizations that target Latinos, to seek a better understanding of the strengths and needs of this growing community. Such an assessment is necessary to identify the strategies and programs to best serve and learn from this diverse population.

In the past year, a team of trained facilitators engaged 66 Latinos living in the Pittsburgh region in discussions covering their routines, concerns, successes, community support and dreams. The findings were transformed into detailed infographics, available in English and Spanish, to easily guide organizations and people who interact with Pittsburgh’s Latinos.

While there were many findings, the main conclusion was that service agencies need to do active outreach to share programs that support strengthening families and helping them cope with unexpected adversity.



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