On Tuesday, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center announced completion of the new medical education building for the Wake Forest School of Medicine. The Bowman Gray Center for Medical Education opened in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter in downtown Winston-Salem after an 18-month renovation of a former Reynolds American tobacco manufacturing plant.
The timing of the opening coincides with Wake Forest School of Medicine introducing one of the most advanced medical school curricula in the country. It allows medical students to prepare for real-life experiences in the most modern of settings: from outpatient clinic to trauma center bay, complete with the new informatics and technologies used in patient care today.
Edward Abraham, Dean of Wake Forest School of Medicine, said the facility was designed with the next generation of physician-leaders in mind.
“We are preparing a collaborative, highly skilled health care workforce that is better prepared to respond to our community’s health needs,” said Abraham.
President Nathan Hatch said, “Dr. McConnell and Dean Abraham’s vision for the future of medical education is complemented by the intersection of tradition and innovation that defines the school’s new location. This building, which will literally and figuratively bring medical and liberal arts education together under one roof, greatly enhances opportunities for closer collaboration among our students and deeper engagement within our community.”
In 2017, Wake Forest will offer undergraduate programs in biomedical sciences and engineering on the south side of the building, adjacent to the School of Medicine.
Categories: University Announcement
Kristen Beavers, assistant professor of health and exercise science, has been awarded a prestigious National Institutes of Health (NIH) K01 Mentored Research Scientist Development Award. It’s the first K01 awarded to a junior research faculty member on the Wake Forest campus.
K01 awards are designed to promote the career development of the recipient based on their past training and career stage. The award provides support and protected time for an intensive, supervised career development experience in the biomedical, behavioral, or clinical sciences – ultimately leading to research independence.
Beavers’ K01 award is in the amount of $473,549 for four years and requires a 75 percent research commitment. Broadly, her areas of study and research interest include nutrition and exercise as they relate to the prevention of disease and disability in older adults. During the K01 award, her research will specifically focus on bone health of older adults. To do so, she has developed an ancillary study to the Cooperative Lifestyle Intervention Program II (CLIP II), an ongoing 18-month randomized clinical trial evaluating the effect of exercise modality during weight loss on muscle function and strength in 249 obese older adults with cardiovascular disease or metabolic syndrome.
Beavers will be studying how weight loss affects bone health in a subset of these older adults by collecting baseline and 18-month computed tomography scans to look at changes in bone thickness, density and strength.
Prior to joining the Wake Forest faculty two years ago, Beavers was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Wake Forest School of Medicine in the Section on Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine and worked on several research studies involving weight loss in older adults and its effect on muscle and fat.
“By focusing this research project on the effect of weight loss on bone health, this opportunity will help me round out my prior experience and knowledge of the clinical effects of weight loss on body composition in older adults,” said Beavers.
Beavers’ primary mentor is Stephen Kritchevsky, principal investigator of the Wake Forest Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center, one of 13 such centers supported by the National Institute on Aging. He is an epidemiologist specializing in nutrition, chronic disease and physical function in older adults and has led many multi-center observational studies and clinical trials focused on the functional health of older adults. Her mentoring team also includes W. Jack Rejeski, professor of health and exercise science at Wake Forest who is the principal investigator of the CLIP II trial. He is an NIH investigator on more than 10 randomized clinical trials, studying aspects of health weight loss and physical activity in older adults.
“Bone health is a strategic priority for our Aging Center and was specifically identified by our external advisory board as an area for development,”Kritchevsky wrote in a letter of support for the award. “I couldn’t be more pleased that a scientist of Kristen’s caliber is taking it on.”
Beavers has received numerous grants, published in multiple journals, and has contributed to a textbook on nutritional supplements in sports and exercise. She is also a registered dietician and is certified as a personal trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine.
Categories: Faculty News