The Wayne State University School of Medicine was well-represented at WSU's 2018 Spirit of Community awards ceremony, winning two awards at the March 29 event held inside WSU's Community Arts Auditorium.
The awards, presented by the WSU Office of the President, Office of the Provost and Division of Government and Community Affairs, were created in 2017 to honor members of the university who best exemplify the spirit of WSU's deep commitment to community engagement.
The Diabetes Education and Wellness Clinic won the ceremony's Project Spirit of Engagement Award. D.E.W. is a free clinic organized and run by WSU students from six health disciplines, including the School of Medicine, to provide diabetes management strategies and treatment plans to optimize health for underserved adult patients through the Super All Year, or SAY, Detroit Family Health Clinic, founded by author and Detroit News columnist Mitch Albom, at Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries. The interdisciplinary approach to patient care allows students to engage with each other and patients for a well-rounded education in patients' multifaceted needs. There has been a steady increase in the number of patients receiving education at the clinic.
The award was accepted by students and faculty who volunteer at the project, including Jennifer Mendez, Ph. D., assistant professor and director of Co-Curricular Programs at the School of Medicine. Faculty from physical therapy and social work students also accepted the award, along with students from those disciplines, along with medical students Marisa Iaderosa, John Condello and Cheryl Craig.
School of Medicine Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine Tolulope Sonuyi, M.D., MS.c., won the Faculty Spirit of Engagement Award. Dr. Sonuyi, an emergency medicine physician at the Detroit Medical Center's Sinai-Grace Hospital, founded DLIVE, the first hospital-based violence intervention program in Michigan.
He worked with My Brother's Keeper to create DLIVE, or Detroit Life Is Valuable Everyday, in 2016. The program is based at Sinai Grace Hospital with the Wayne State University Department of Emergency Medicine. DLIVE works with youth and young adults who have sustained acute intentional violent trauma to eradicate the future morbidity and mortality predicted by the initial injury, prevent retaliatory violence, prevent incarceration often associated with individuals who have been victims of traumatic violence and to facilitate a pathway toward success and prosperity.
He coordinates a multi-disciplinary team of doctors, nurses, social workers, mental health specialists, violence intervention specialists and volunteers assist victims of violent trauma to adopt their injury as a springboard to change their lives. Trained violence intervention specialists provide crisis intervention, trust-building, engagement, mentorship and linkage between the hospital and Detroit community support so that trauma patients are involved in an evidence-based strategy for success when they are discharged from the hospital.
Additional WSU winners included:
Student Spirit of Engagement Award to College of Engineering senior Tannia Rodriguez-Valenzuela, who is president of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and founder of Timmy Global Health. Watch the nomination video.
Staff Spirit of Engagement Award to the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts' Joan Verla, for ArtCorpsDetroit. Watch the nomination video.
Inspire from Within Philanthropy Award to Patrick Gossman, Ph.D., WSU's deputy chief information officer. Watch the nomination video.