Government Affairs News Government Affairs News Mon, 21 Aug 2017 15:22:37 EDT PHPSimpl Looking for scholarships at WSU? Click here Tue, 01 Apr 2008 04:00:00 EDT Community Affairs Calendar Tue, 08 Jun 2010 04:00:00 EDT Profile: WSU’s Outgoing and Incoming Board of Governors By Gus Navarro Have you ever wondered how M. Roy Wilson was elected as president of Wayne State? Or perhaps you’ve been curious about how the university receives funding, sets tuition rates or secures the money to build on campus. The answer to these questions lie with the Board of Governors of Wayne State University. Comprised of eight members who serve eight-year terms, the Board is in charge of the university’s finances and works to ensure that Wayne State is a destination for those seeking an institution of higher learning. While most public universities have a governing board, Wayne State’s is unique for a few reasons. Residents of Michigan vote on the Board of Governors during the general election held every two years. Out of the 15 public universities in Michigan, only Wayne State, MSU and U of M have governing boards voted on by the public. The remaining schools in Michigan have governing boards, but the governor and state senate choose them. Nationally, there are only three other states where elections of university governing boards take place. With the recent November election behind us, it is time to thank outgoing members Paul Massaron and Gary S. Pollard for all they’ve done in service to Wayne State. It is also time to welcome our new members. Paul Massaron First elected in 2000, Paul Massaron completed his 16th year of service in December. During his 32-year career with the UAW, and a background in labor relations, negotiating contracts, arbitration, labor education and political action, Massaron brought invaluable experience to the Board. Massaron is a skilled negotiator, always considering how decisions made by the Board would impact the campus community. With 16 years of service on the Board, the list of Massaron’s accomplishments is extensive. Multiple renovations and capital projects such as The Welcome Center, the Bookstore, student housing, Mazurek Center and Applebaum College were approved and finished during his tenure. This was all accomplished by including board members, and faculty and student representatives in the conversation. Wayne State has grown a lot over the last 16 years, and Paul Massaron was a big part of that. He is proud for having helped steer the university through “almost 16 years of historic disinvestment by the State of Michigan in public universities.” Massaron says that he remains hopeful that state politicians will recognize that putting funds into higher education will be part of the road to economic success for Michigan. Gary Pollard Gary S. Pollard served on the Board for eight years, also leaving an indelible mark on Wayne State. Elected in 2008, Pollard has been involved with many of the projects and changes happening on campus and around Detroit. As a Detroit native, Pollard brought an important perspective to the Board and was a staunch advocate for the community. Having served in the Navy, Pollard was quick to support the opening of the now nationally renowned Student Veteran Resource Center. Several projects approved during Pollard’s term have changed, or will change, the face of Wayne State. The IBio building, the Mike Ilitch School of Business and the recently approved housing partnership ensure that Wayne State will continue to be an integral part of Detroit’s resurgence. Pollard also held many leadership roles on the Board. Perhaps most notably, Pollard chaired the Presidential Search Committee, bringing President Wilson to campus. Michael Busuito At the January swearing-in ceremony, Wayne State welcomed two new members to the Board, Michael Busuito and Mark Gaffney. Busuito received his M.D. from WSU in the early 80s and built a successful medical practice while continuing to conduct research, publish and teach at Wayne State. Having been a part of the university family for 40 years, he understands the need to manage the budget without raising tuition. Busuito hopes to “benefit the entire university by leading the School of Medicine into a more stable future.” With a background in labor relations and management, Gaffney brings a unique set of experiences to the Board. Between serving as President of the Michigan AFL-CIO and working as a union official for Local #214, he’s represented working families in Michigan for over 30 years. Gaffney is familiar with WSU from his service on the advisory board for Labor @ Wayne and by teaching in the MAELR program. Gaffney hopes to grow WSU’s reputation locally and nationally while keeping tuition affordable. In looking to the future, Gaffney explained, “Wayne State must continue to be an economic engine for the City of Detroit and a welcoming, diverse and safe place for students to live and thrive.” Mark Gaffney Despite such different professional backgrounds, Gaffney and Busuito both hope to have a positive impact on Wayne State University. They both understand that WSU has tremendous upside and is vital to the City of Detroit. Wayne State’s Board of Governors is unique and our Board members have a responsibility to ensure that the university is successful through working closely with administrators, faculty members and students. If past experience is any indication, it’s clear that Governors Busuito and Gaffney are up to the task.   Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT Governor’s Funding Plan for Colleges and Universities By Greg Bird On February 8th, Governor Rick Snyder presented his budget proposal for the coming fiscal year to the state legislature. Over the next few months, the state legislature will examine this proposal and make changes that they believe are in the best interest of the state. The Governor’s proposed budget for the state’s colleges and universities includes an additional $36.6 million for the fiscal year that begins October 1, 2017. That amounts to an overall increase of 2.5 percent. Because of the performance funding formula, however, not every institution will not see this amount. Under this proposal, Wayne State University (WSU) will see only a 2 percent increase. That amounts to an additional $3.88 million for the coming year if the University keeps any tuition increase under 3.8 percent or $475 per student. WSU is happy to see that the Governor’s budget includes reinvestment in higher education, but it is very disappointing that for the sixth consecutive year, WSU will receive one of the lowest percentage increases in state funding. These funding levels are based on Michigan’s performance metrics formula. By any important measure, however – enrollment, graduation rates, research, economic impact – WSU’s performance is either near the top or improving. Unfortunately, the formula is flawed, and this hurts the university, our students, and our state. The current methodology uses the Carnegie Foundation’s classification to compare WSU with other universities that have the highest levels of research. This results in nonsensical comparisons with the nation’s top research universities and other institutions that bear no resemblance to Wayne State. With this formula, Wayne State would actually receive more performance funding if it did less research, which would benefit neither the university nor the state. Furthermore, some of the performance funding metrics do not recognize graduate activity, or emphasize research as much as they should. We will continue to advocate that the state’s metrics should lead to desirable outcomes for students and the state’s economy and should take into account each school’s unique mission.   Capital Outlay Project Update Governor Rick Snyder’s budget included funding for Wayne State University’s STEM Innovation Learning Center that the University hopes to construct in the near future. The Capital Outlay budget that the Governor proposed included funding for three university, two community college and two state agency projects. The budget proposes to pay $14.9 million of the STEM Innovation Learning Center, which is about half the cost of the project. The plan calls to renovate and repurpose the Science and Engineering Library (SEL). The SEL was closed a few years ago as part of the continuing necessity to reduce operating costs. Because WSU has experienced such tremendous growth in STEM student enrollment and graduation rates since 2010, the University believes this project is an outstanding investment opportunity to create an enhanced instructional environment for our undergraduate STEM students. Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT From the Vice President By Patrick Lindsey "To Tax or Not to Tax" The Michigan House of Representatives recently considered HB 4001, a bill to eliminate the state’s income tax. As a taxpaying citizen, my immediate reaction was one of great interest; any bill that will put more of my money back into my pocket sounds good to me. However, after having read and analyzed the bill, I was much less enthusiastic. While varying versions of this bill would be hashed out by the Legislature, the underlying fact is that a rollback in taxes equals a loss of revenue. In one version of the bill, the loss of anticipated revenue totaled nearly $2 billion by October 2018. Such a deep cut in the budget would necessarily affect schools, roads, community colleges and public universities, and local government revenue sharing. Along with Michigan’s 15 public universities, Wayne State encouraged state representatives to thoughtfully consider all the consequences before voting on HB 4001. If the past is precedent, a tax cut of this magnitude would result in especially deep cuts to higher education: * In 2000, Michigan invested $1.50 billion in university operating support. Adjusted for inflation, that was $9,387 in state support per student. * In 2016, we invested $1.36 billion. That’s $5,217 per student. This equates to a 44 percent reduction. State investment in higher education is critical to ensuring college affordability, enabling Michiganders to achieve a postsecondary education, to achieve a middle class living, and to contribute to the state’s economy. Further disinvestment in state university funding will shift the burden of paying for college to students and families, through higher tuition prices. It is notable that lawmakers in Kansas—who have strived to make that state the showcase for demonstrating how state tax cuts drive economic growth—earlier this month passed an income tax increase that will generate $2 billion to offset the huge revenue shortfalls that have devastated that state's public services in recent years. Tax-cutting to drive economic prosperity is a losing proposition. Michigan lawmakers have made tough choices over the past six years, resulting in a sustained period of economic growth and gradual reinvestment in higher education (although, collectively, the state universities are still below FY 2011 funding levels). We are on a positive path toward our future and we can't afford to take a wrong turn now. Now is the time to invest in our people—our talent pipeline—and in our infrastructure. While having more money back into my pocket sounds good, I am far more interested in lawmakers more effectively utilizing the tax revenues the state currently receives to make our state grow and thrive. To me, that sounds even better. Editor’s Note: After a 12-hour marathon session that went until 1:30 AM Wednesday morning, the House voted down a pared down version of HB 4001. Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT WSU’s 2017 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Features New Interactive Format Featured guest, Olympian Allyson Felix, answers questions from student attendees at the conclusion of her fire side chat with Kimberly Gill, co-anchor of WDIV Local 4 News By Victor Green On Friday, January 13, 2017, Wayne State University hosted its annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute at the Max M. Fisher Music Center. This year, for first time, the event boasted a fire side chat between featured guest, Olympian Allyson Felix, and moderator Kimberly Gill, co-anchor of WDIV Local 4 News. Felix has amassed an incredible 13 global titles, ten United States Championships, nine Olympic Medals, and a World Record. Her accomplishments solidify her as one of the greatest female athletes in the world and she has garnered attention from the top media publications including Vogue, Glamour, Essence, Self, O Magazine, Sports Illustrated, and Elle. Kimberly Gill can be seen weekdays on “Local 4 News” at 5, 6 and 11 p.m. She is originally from the South - but she already feels like she’s been adopted by Detroit. Gill has been recognized on numerous occasions for her work in broadcasting. Before the two-time Emmy winner got her start in television, she worked two jobs to put herself through college including driving an 18 wheeler truck for FedEx and as an airplane fueler. pon the conclusion of the interview, students from a number of local schools had the opportunity to ask Felix questions from the stage. The program also included performances by the Achievers Ladies Ensemble of Detroit School of Arts Choir, Detroit Academy of Arts and Sciences Show Choir, and InsideOut Literary Arts Project’s Citywide Poets. The Dr. Arthur L. Johnson Community Leadership Awards were presented to both an individual and an organization whose contributions affect our community in a positive way. The 2017 organization award was presented to the Covenant House and the individual awardee was Cindy Eggleston, founder of Brilliant Detroit.      Students attending the annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute arrive at the Max M. Fisher Music Center    Detroit Academy of Arts and Sciences Show Choir performs in front of over one thousand attendees at WSU’s Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute   Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT What's Happening in Washington, D.C. By James Williams President Trump Rescinds Title IX Protections for Transgender Students On Wednesday, February 22, 2017 the Departments of Education and Justice released a guidance letter rescinding President Barack Obama’s protections for transgender students under Title IX. The letter cited “significant litigation” and the administration’s desire to “further and more completely consider the legal issues involved.” Further, the administration believes that this matter should be left to states to decide. Reportedly at the insistence of Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, the directive emphasizes the importance of protecting LGBT students from bullying, discrimination, and harassment. Two New Members Appointed to Federal Accreditation Panel Republicans in Congress appointed two new members to the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI), the federal advisory committee overseeing college accreditors, before the panel’s first meeting during the Trump administration last week. Claude Pressnell, president of the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association, and Brian Jones, president of Strayer University, have been chosen to fill the two vacancies on the 18-person panel. Mr. Pressnell was selected by Senate Republicans and has previously served on a task force on deregulating higher education. House Republicans selected Mr. Jones, who has previously represented for-profit colleges on the negotiated-rulemaking panel for gainful employment during the Obama administration and served as general counsel at the Department of Education during the George W. Bush administration. During the Obama administration, college accreditors came under harsh criticism for not putting enough emphasis on student outcomes at the schools that they oversee and the Department published “accreditor dashboards” to spotlight accreditors that approved poor-performing schools. It is not clear year how the Trump administration will approach accreditation, but the Department did update the accreditor dashboards this week ahead of the NACIQI meeting. Update from Dr. Angelique Day Angelique Day, PhD, MSW, is an assistant professor in the School of Social Work at Wayne State University.  For the 2016-17 academic year, she is serving as a congressional fellow in the office of U.S. Congressman Danny K. Davis (D-IL), Ranking Member, Human Resources Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee.  In her role as a staffer, Dr. Day provides leadership to Rep. Davis's child welfare and higher education portfolios.  Rep. Davis is also a member of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth, which has allowed her an opportunity to assist in leading and defining Caucus topic priorities. In March, Dr. Day will be working with the offices of Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA), Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Senator Debbie Stabenow on the development of a joint congressional briefing to educate members and their staff about the unique challenges foster youth face in securing and maintaining employment. WSU Director of Federal Affairs, James Williams meets with Angelique Day to discuss her work in Washington D.C.   Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT 2016 Combined Charitable Contributions Campaign Update By Victor Green Every year, the Division of Government and Community Affairs hosts the United Way for Southeastern Michigan (UWSEM) and the Black United Fund (BUF) combined charitable contributions campaign fundraiser. United Way provides our community with an independent safety net of health and human services by supporting a number of community service agencies. The Black United Fund is a community-based resource center that assists community efforts through referrals, funding, consultation and technical assistance. Both organizations provide numerous community service programs through a large network of volunteers and donors. The 2016 campaign, led by chair Matthew W. Seeger, Dean of the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts, raised a grand total of $59,787. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this year’s effort!  Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT Save the Date for Spring Wayne Cares Events By Victor Green March of Dimes March for Babies  April 29, 2017 Detroit Medical Center Brush Mall 3990 John R. Street, Detroit W Week April 17—April 22 The Wayne State Athletic Department is collecting basic needs items including, but not limited to, soap, socks, toothbrushes, toilet paper, feminine products and deodorant for its annual Basic Needs Drive. In conjunction with Wayne Cares and Covenant House Michigan, the drive collects small toiletry items to make basic needs bags to distribute later that day.  If you would like to donate, please bring your items to the Matthaei Athletic Complex prior to April 21. For more information please contact Candice Howard at or 313-577-3048 26th annual Komen Detroit Race for the Cure  Saturday, May 13, 2017 Comerica Park, Detroit American Heart Association Heart Walk Saturday, May 20, 2017 Wayne State University Campus, Detroit Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT Combatting Student Homelessness to Ensure Detroit’s Success First lady of WSU Mrs. Wilson speaking at the Humanities Center Brown Bag Colloquium Series WSU High Program Staff There is a severely under-represented population here in the city of Detroit. They are people who are working tirelessly to make something of their lives, yet life hasn’t dealt them the cards they need to succeed. Hidden in plain sight is a growing number of Wayne State University students experiencing the tragedy of homelessness, precarious housing, and financial instability. It is a common misconception that if someone has the means to go to college, they have the means to obtain basic necessities. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. There are Wayne State students who have to choose between paying tuition bills and paying for their basic needs like food and a living space. Wayne State University’s HIGH Program recognizes these students. These students have dreams of graduating, and they simply need assistance in making those dreams a reality. The HIGH Program provides the necessary support so they don’t have to make the choice. The HIGH Program has been transforming students’ lives for over three years. Through giving a helping hand, financial assistance, and consistent housing, HIGH can help make the difference between earning a college degree and dropping out. Detroit needs its students more than ever to keep the city moving in the right direction. This past fall, WSU’s First Lady Mrs. Jacqueline Wilson and the HIGH team worked diligently to spread the word about the program and its benefits for students. At the start of the fall semester in August, HIGH Program members spoke about the program at WSU’s annual Baroudeur cycling event and hosted an information table at FestiFall. In early October, Mrs. Wilson hosted a presentation in Wayne State’s Student Center called “Supporting Student Success: Wayne State University’s ‘Helping Individuals Go Higher’ (HIGH) Program” as part of the Humanities Center Brown Bag Colloquium Series. In mid-October, the HIGH Program received a generous $30,000 donation from The Jamie and Denise Jacob Family Foundation to help HIGH continue to provide support to struggling Wayne State students. HIGH Program members also hosted a table at WSU’s Department of Communication’s Journalism Day Internship Fair where they successfully recruited volunteers and interns for the winter term. First lady of WSU Mrs. Wilson and HIGH Program Members at the Cass Community Social Services kitchen In mid-November, Mrs. Wilson and the HIGH Program members volunteered at the Cass Community Social Services kitchen and hosted an information table in the WSU Student Center in order to help spread awareness about the issues of hunger and homelessness in honor of National Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week; and for Thanksgiving, President Wilson and Mrs. Wilson hosted students at their home to share in the holiday’s festivities. The HIGH Program’s ongoing efforts include the continuous determination to spread the word about the program through meeting with student organizations, faculty, and by hosting informational events. HIGH is also currently working with the McGregor Fund team to create a food pantry and Student Office of Advocacy and Resources (SOAR). Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT 2016-17 Adopt-A-Classroom Update By Victor Green Net proceeds from the annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute luncheon will be donated to Adopt-A-Classroom to support Detroit Public Schools. Since 2014, Wayne State University has donated $30,000 to 28 classrooms in the Detroit area. Adopt-A-Classroom is a nationally recognized organization that invites the community into classrooms to increase opportunity for student success by empowering teachers with community partnerships and funds to purchase resources for their classrooms. By adopting a classroom, donors form partnerships with specific classrooms providing financial and moral support. The result is a meaningful contribution to education in which donors experience the impact of their efforts and celebrate in a classroom's success. This year WSU adopted Thurgood Marshall Elementary School K-8. Thurgood Marshall is a small school that focuses not only on the child, but the whole family. Make a Difference Day: Wayne State University volunteers take a break for a quick photo at the 2016-17 adopted school, Thurgood Marshall Elementary School Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT WSU Faculty Team Up With Public Safety By Doug Skrzyniarz The opioid epidemic is increasingly becoming a priority in public health across the country and here in Michigan. Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, Lt. Governor Brian Calley, and many leaders in the state legislature have reached out to community mental health agencies and local law enforcement to offer assistance. In Wayne County and Detroit, Tom Watkins at the Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority has been a leader and partner in supporting Wayne State University’s initiatives on substance abuse and mental health. This past fall, former U.S. Senator Carl Levin brought Michael Botticelli, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, to campus to talk about the need to de-stigmatize substance abuse and for the health professionals to play a more pro-active role in preventing substance abuse in their patients. Wayne State University’s task force on the misuse of controlled substances is already making a difference here on campus. In 2015, there were 1,980 drug overdose deaths in Michigan, an increase of 13.1% over 2014. Most of those deaths involved heroin or prescription opioids. Tragically, many of them might have been saved if naloxone, an opioid antagonist, had been administered in time. Recognizing the critical role of naloxone training and distribution in reducing the number of opioid deaths, a Wayne State University campus-wide task force on Safe Use of Controlled Medications listed naloxone education for public safety officers as a core priority. The task force, formed July 2016, is pleased to announce that naloxone training for Wayne State University Police Department was initiated in November 2016 and is ongoing. Wayne State Police officers carry kits with two naloxone nasal spray capsules, enough to reverse most opioid overdoses long enough for transport to the nearest emergency department for definitive care. Training and naloxone kits were provided by Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority. Other first responders trained include the Michigan State Police and Detroit Police Department. It is important to remember that naloxone reverses opioid overdoses. It cannot reverse overdoses from other drugs or alcohol. Following six months of county-wide trainings, the Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority announced that 29 lives have been saved by timely administration of naloxone. Most of the lives saved were by first responders or social service providers, but private citizens also stepped up. Importantly, the people saved include men and women, and different races and ethnicities, highlighting that the opioid epidemic affects all of us. If you are interested in getting involved on this issue, please contact Doug Skrzyniarz, Associate Vice President of Government Health Affairs, at or call him at 586-873-5926. Tue, 28 Feb 2017 05:00:00 EDT President Wilson's Testimony to the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Higher Education Wed, 22 Mar 2017 04:00:00 EDT From the Vice President WSU’s commitment to going “all in” By Patrick Lindsey On Thursday, March 23, 2017, nearly 250 Wayne State students, staff, faculty, alumni, and community members gathered in WSU’s Community Arts Auditorium to celebrate the university’s inaugural Spirit of Community awards ceremony. These awards honored members of our university who best exemplify the spirit of Wayne State University’s deep commitment to community engagement. Not only did we celebrate these individuals, but this event served as a collective thank you to everyone campus-wide who has taken the time to volunteer or engage in work or research activities that have brought benefit to both the University and the community. As keynote speaker, Tony Michaels, president and CEO of the Parade Company discussed the importance of going “all in” in all aspects of our lives. A big component of our Warrior spirit is our university family’s willingness to go “all in” when it comes to engaging and serving the community. The Spirit of Community awards demonstrated the breadth and the depth of our extensive work in the community including volunteerism, research and service learning. This engagement not only benefits the external community, but it helps all of us grow and thrive both personally and professionally. Our passionate students, dedicated staff, renowned faculty, and supportive alumni are intrinsically linked to service. Not only is community engagement a pillar of WSU’s strategic plan, it is a personal driver for so many of us. It is our hope that this new annual event not only conveys our sincere gratitude to those who participate in meaningful engagement, but we hope that it will serve as a motivator for those who may be considering getting more involved or for those who are considering volunteering for the first time. As we move into warmer months and a shift in schedules, let’s remember to take the time out to give back to the community that gives so much to us. Fri, 30 Jun 2017 04:00:00 EDT WSU visits Lansing to advocate for the university and higher education By Brianna Ellison On March 21st, nearly 80 Wayne State University students, faculty, administrators and alumni traveled to the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing for Warrior Day 2017. Topics of discussion included state budget funding for higher education, the performance metrics used by the state of Michigan in allocating funds, and WSU’s highly ranked capital outlay project proposal, a STEM Innovation Center. WSU participants met with their own legislators, including both their State Representative and State Senator. In a few instances, they met with a legislative staff person when their representative was not available. President M. Roy Wilson, Provost Keith Whitfield and Board of Governors members Kim Trent and Diane Dunaskiss were also in attendance and met with the State Budget Director and other influential lawmakers. Two lawmakers, Representatives Fred Durhal (D-Detroit) and Larry Inman (R-Traverse City), spoke with the group prior to the morning meetings. In addition to hearing from guest speakers, WSU participants attended a buffet lunch in the Capitol to visit further with legislators and staff in a more informal setting. WSU attendees were also introduced on the floor of the House at the beginning of session by Rep. Fred Durhal. Stuart Baum, Chair of the WSU Student Senate Government Affairs Committee and rising WSU sophomore, found the day to be impactful. “I enjoyed being a part of Warrior Day because it gave me the opportunity to meet with my legislators and talk to them about the issues that mattered most to me as a student, while also representing Wayne State University in a positive light,” said Baum. WSU participants met with 65 legislative offices, which is nearly half of the State’s 148 lawmakers. “I believe that my legislators valued the opportunity to listen to us all speak candidly about the important issues impacting our lives, and that they respected the dedication we showed by taking the time to meet with them in person,” said Baum. He continued, “In meeting with them, I saw how attentively my legislators absorbed the feedback I gave them, and I truly appreciated the commitment they made to addressing my concerns.” Students, staff and faculty hailed from all 13 of WSU’s schools and colleges. Each school and college provided a unique poster which was displayed in the Capitol and gave an overview of that particular school or college.           Photos: WSU students at the Michigan State Capitol on Warrior Day 2017 Dr. Andreana Holowatyj, a researcher at Wayne State University, meets with her State Representative, Stephanie Gray Chang Warrior Day participants attend a House session where they were introduced from the floor by Rep. Fred Durhal Fri, 30 Jun 2017 04:00:00 EDT American Heart Association Heart Walk brings more than 12,000 to Wayne State’s Campus By Victor Green Wayne Cares, in partnership with the Michigan Chapter of the American Heart Association, participated in the Detroit Heart Walk on May 20, 2017.  More than 800,000 people in the U.S. die from heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases each year. But 80 percent of cardiovascular disease could be prevented through healthy habits such as eating right, controlling cholesterol, physical activity and not smoking. The American Heart Association is the largest voluntary health organization working to prevent heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases. With heart disease and stroke being the number one and number four killers of all Americans, the American Heart Association’s mission is to build healthier lives free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. The Heart Walk is the American Heart Association's premiere event for raising funds to save lives. This year Wayne State University hosted the Heart Walk on campus and joined more than 1 million people in 300 cities nationwide to take a stand against heart disease. More than 12,000 people came to Wayne State’s main campus to participate in this year’s event. Nearly 500 Wayne State participanes and 46 Wayne Cares teams walked and raised more than $25,000 this year.  “Our goal is to improve cardiovascular health by 20 percent and reduce the number of deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent by the year 2020,” said Beth Collins, Detroit Heart Walk vice president. “Getting people active is one way that we are able to get closer to achieving our goal.” “As an urban serving university and as part of our overall mission, I believe that this engagement is a reflection of our commitment to the broad communities we serve and the mission of the American Heart Association,” said Stephen Lanier, co-chair of the 2017 Detroit Heart Walk and vice president for research at Wayne State University. “The Heart Walk promotes fun ways to be physically active and make healthier choices every day. And it allows us all to embrace the cause to create healthier, longer lives.” Wayne State University will host the Detroit Heart Walk for the next two years.  Photo: Wayne State University students, staff, and faculty gather before participating in the 2017 Michigan Chapter of the American Heart Association Detroit Heart Walk. Fri, 30 Jun 2017 04:00:00 EDT Lycaki Young Fund demonstrates the positive impact of academic medicine By Doug Skrzyniarz This year marks the 25th anniversary of the closing of the Lafayette Clinic.  Lafayette served as the city of Detroit and Wayne County’s only inpatient mental health hospital.  The facility also hosted critically important outpatient services, substance abuse programs, and was the primary host site for training psychiatrists. All of this was put at-risk when the state announced it was closing Lafayette.  In response to the potential crisis, the former director of state mental health, Jim Haveman, worked with Wayne State University to take on the clinical and teaching responsibilities previously hosted at Lafayette Clinic. Helene Lycaki, psychologist in the WSU department of Psychiatry, led the effort at Wayne State and created what is now known as the Lycaki Young Fund.  Director Haveman and Dr. Lycaki added one more key member of their team, State Senator Joe Young, who was the lead sponsor in the legislature to make sure there was enough funding to pay for the clinical and teaching services.  While Helene Lycaki and Joe Young are no longer with us, Director Haveman has continued to be a big supporter of the Lycaki Young Fund and has become an international leader on public mental health. After 25 years, what has the fund accomplished?  Trained more than 300 residents, of which approximately 80% stay in the state of Michigan to practice Serves more than 50,000 Medicaid and uninsured patients per year Has administered more than 43,000 doses of methadone per year Conducts approximately 3,000 therapy session per year Treats more than 2,500 pediatric patients per year for severe mental illness and substance abuse Has developed and implemented new treatment protocols that have decreased hospitalization by 90% and reduced use of restraints by 50% Has saved state Medicaid more than $100 million since 2005 The Lycaki Young Fund has been a great example of community leadership and the important impact of Academic Medicine.  Looking toward the future, the Chair of the WSU Department of Psychiatry, Dr. David Rosenberg, expects even greater success and impact.   Photo:  WSU School of Medicine students and Board of Governors member Michael Busuito visited Lansing on March 1 to meet with legislators to advocate for the continuation of the Lycaki Young Fund   Fri, 30 Jun 2017 04:00:00 EDT 11 years of impact: Wayne Cares & the Detroit Race for the Cure partnership By Victor Green On May 13, 2017, the 26th annual Komen Detroit Race for the Cure kicked off at Comerica Park with the support of Wayne State University and the local community. Wayne State has a long-standing commitment to the Race for the Cure since its inception in 1992 by Wayne State's own Gloria Heppner, then associate vice-resident, Research. We are proud to support the Komen Foundation through collaboration with the Wayne Cares initiative and university community.  The 2017 Wayne Cares Race for the Cure was led by Honorary Chair Provost Keith E. Whitfield. His work alongside Wayne Cares Chair Patrick Gossman brought together several Wayne Cares teams and led donation efforts for the initiative. Since the partnership with Wayne Cares began in 2006, the Race for the Cure has brought together in excess of 3,500 participants and raised more than $100,000. Gossman said, "I support the Race for the Cure to raise funds to fight breast cancer - the most common cancer in women. My wife is alive today because of past research. I'm very grateful, but better treatments and preventive measures are needed to stop the loss of more than 40,000 people in the U.S. alone every year.” Wayne State has been awarded the largest school team to participate in the race every year since 2006.   Wayne State's relationship with the Race for the Cure is a community-centric cause, directly giving back to those who live in our neighborhood. Up to 75% of the net funds support local breast health, breast cancer awareness, and screening through projects in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. The remaining funds support research, educational and scientific programs both locally and around the world. Wayne State has received millions of dollars in research grants from the Komen Foundation to support our local communities. Fri, 30 Jun 2017 04:00:00 EDT WSU receives grant from State for sexual assault prevention By Greg Bird The State of Michigan recently awarded Wayne State University a grant to implement an innovative and strategic sexual assault prevention program on campus.  This grant comes through First Lady Sue Snyder’s “Let’s End Campus Sexual Assault” initiative.  All together, 18 community colleges and universities in Michigan received a portion of the $500,000 through this initiative this year. It is expected that there will be additional grant funding available next year as well.  The funds for Wayne State University will be used to develop a peer education program focused on prevention education within the Wayne State community, and with several of the Detroit-area high schools. Rachel Kollin, coordinator of student wellness and prevention programs, led the grant-writing and believes the peer education program will further develop dialogues about sexual assault. “The students know the experience firsthand, and they really understand what the barriers to reporting and intervening are,” said Kollin. “From an administrative perspective, you can guess based on research and reading, but no amount of that puts you in the unique position of being a Wayne State student.” The grant application review committee included representatives from the Michigan State Police, the Michigan Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention and Treatment Board and the Executive Office of the Governor. It was also recently announced that First Lady Snyder will hold a third “Inform. Empower. Prevent. Let’s End Campus Sexual Assault” summit on the campus of Eastern Michigan University on September 25th. The goal of the day-long summit will be making Michigan a model state in the fight against sexual assault among the college-age population. The summit brings together university representatives, state legislators, law enforcement officials, students and national experts for a day of learning, conversation and collaboration in an effort to identify current best practices and discuss problems.  The summit will continue the conversation of campus assault and is an ongoing campaign to inform communities, empower individuals and ultimately bring an end to campus sexual assault. Fri, 30 Jun 2017 04:00:00 EDT Wayne State University researcher testifies before Congress By James Williams On April 4, 2017, Dr. Andreana Holowatyj, a researcher at Wayne State University, participated in the annual American Association for Cancer Research’s (AACR) annual conference in Washington, DC.  This panel, entitled “The Road to Cancer Survivorship: Discover, Predict, Prevent, and Treat,” served as an open dialogue with the policymakers and their staff members to discuss the future of cancer research related to clinical trials, health care disparities, and the support of biomedical research training programs. This event was hosted by the AACR Office of Science Policy and Government Affairs, a division of the AACR that is based in Washington and champions the societal value of investing in cancer research.    Photo:   Dr. Holowatyj (far right) participated in an April 4 panel in Washington DC to discuss the future of cancer research.  Photo courtesy of Amir West. Thu, 06 Jul 2017 04:00:00 EDT Pell Grant update By James Williams While Pell Grants stay alive in the Trump budget, funds for the program are recommended to be reduced by $3.9 billion. Grants are a huge factor for undergraduate students, and the Pell Grant program is the largest federal grant program. It sends up to $5,920 to students whose families earn less than $40,000, prioritized for families earning closer to $20,000. While virtually all students have loans, the key difference is that grants do not have to be repaid.  The Trump budget also proposes eliminating the federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) program. These grants provide $100 - $4,000 per year for students based upon financial need and on the school’s funds. It is campus-based and is sent directly to the institution, not the student. Will these changes go into effect? The ball now sits in Congress’ court. Thu, 06 Jul 2017 04:00:00 EDT ​​​​​James Williams, Jr., commencement speaker at the Kennedy Krieger Institute By James Williams On June 6, 2017, James Williams, Jr., accompanied by his son, James Williams, III, delivered commencement remarks at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, MD.  Both gave remarks to students of the LEAP Program (Lifeskills and Education for Students with Autism and other Pervasive Behavioral Challenges). James III, who graduated from the Kennedy Krieger Institute in 2012, lives semi-independently, has two jobs and works 40 hours per week, and lives a full and complete life. James Jr. congratulated the graduates, family, friends and Kennedy Krieger team. KKI, a non-profit organization founded in 1937, provides inpatient and outpatient medical care, community services, and school-based programs for children and adolescents with learning disabilities, as well as disorders of the brain, spinal cord and musculoskeletal system of all degrees. KKI also is involved in researching various disorders and discovering new interventions and earlier diagnosis of different intellectual challenges. Photo: James Williams, Jr., Wayne State University, director of federal affairs and his son, James Williams, III spoke at the Kennedy Krieger Institute Commencement Ceremony June 6, 2017 in Baltimore, Maryland.   Thu, 06 Jul 2017 04:00:00 EDT STEM Innovation Learning Center project proposal receives state approval Tue, 01 Aug 2017 04:00:00 EDT