AΩA Welcomes New Members During 2023 Graduation Celebrations

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Group photo of the Alpha Chapter AOA Class of 2023

The Alpha Chapter of the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society (AΩA) opened the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences 2023 Commencement Weekend festivities hosting 15th Annual AΩA Visiting Professor Grand Rounds Lecture, May 18.

This year’s hybrid event featured Alpha Chapter AΩA Visiting Professor Carolyn Sufrin, MD, PhD, associate professor of OB-GYN at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and director of Advocacy and Research on Reproductive Wellness of Incarcerated People. Sufrin, who also serves as associate professor of health, behavior, and society at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; associate director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Medical Humanities and Social Medicine, presented the 15th Annual Medicine Grand Rounds lecture titled, “Reproductive Justice and Health Care for Incarcerated People.”

An obstetrics gynecologist specializing in complex family planning, Surfrin’s work focuses extensively on reproductive health issues affecting incarcerated women from providing clinical care in jail to research, policy and advocacy. Her talk addressed the broader social context of mass incarceration and particularly women’s incarceration and health.

“Mass incarceration, no matter what field you are in, is a public health issue,” Sufrin told the audience, noting that currently in the United States there are roughly 1.9 million incarcerated people, with women comprising about 10% of that population.

In 1978, she added, “on any given day there were about half a million incarcerated people. Within this this phenomenon of mass incarceration, women have long been the fastest growing population.”

Most of these women are young women, younger than 45, that means women of potential childbearing age. In fact, nearly two thirds of incarcerated women are already mothers primary caregivers for their families

“Think about the collateral consequences, the ripple effects on families and communities, when the primary caregiver becomes incarcerated” Surfin said. “These are people who are living at the margins of systems of oppression that characterize their lives through poverty, racism, gender-based violence, unemployment, all kinds of things that have more to do with their pathways of incarceration.”

That, she added, leads to much higher rates of chronic medical conditions.

The 68th Annual AΩA Banquet and Induction Ceremony

The previous evening, the GW SMHS Alpha Chapter — is the oldest AΩA chapter in Washington, D.C., founded in 1954 — hosted it’s 68th Annual AΩA Banquet and Induction Ceremony. GW medical students are selected to the honor society from a pool representing the top 25 percent of their graduating class, based on their academic performance, extracurricular activities, research endeavors, and commitment to the community.

“AΩA is to medicine as Phi Beta Kappa is to letters and humanities,” said Alan Wasserman, MD, Eugene Meyer Professor of Medicine at GW SMHS, and councilor of the GW Alpha Chapter, who along with Angelike Liappis, MD ’96, FIDSA, associate professor of medicine at SMHS and chapter secretary, leads the annual event. Wasserman, added that membership in the society “is a distinction that will accompany you for the rest of your careers, and it will be something to live up to for the rest of your lives.”

Throughout the academic year, students selected for induction organize tutorial services for underclassmen in academic need, volunteer at community-based medical clinics and collect residency interview experiences for our GW AΩA Guide to the 4th year, an online resource for GW medical students offering advice, contacts, and interview experiences from students from each graduating class.

Liappis formally conferred membership on the AΩA Class of 2023, which included 46 members of the SMHS MD program Class of 2023. In addition to the graduating students, five residents, and four full-time SMHS faculty members were inducted into the Alpha Chapter. Julia Cruz, MD, Emerita Clinical Professor of Medicine, was honored for her years of service to GW and SMHS, receiving the 2023 AΩA Alpha Chapter Voluntary Clinical Faculty Award. 

2023 AΩA Alpha Chapter Resident Inductees

  • Joseph Devlin, MD, Department of Surgery
  • Alex Gu, MD, Department of Orthopedic Surgery
  • Ashleigh Omorogbe, MD, Department of Emergency Medicine
  • Maggie Pruitt, MD, PhD, Medical Education Chief Resident, Department of Internal Medicine
  • Sowmya Swamy, DO, Department of Internal Medicine

2023 AΩA Alpha Chapter Faculty Inductees

  • Amy Caggiula, MD, EdD, MA, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, and Associate Program Director, Emergency Medicine Residency Program
  • The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Science
  • Charelle Carter-Brooks, MD, MSc, Assistant Professor Obstetrics and Gynecology, and of Urology
  • The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences
  • Pamela E. Karasik, MD, Professor of Medicine at GW SMHS, and Chief, Department of Medicine Washington DC Veterans Affairs Medical Center
  • Aisha Terry, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine, and of Health Policy

2023 AΩA Alpha Chapter Voluntary Clinical Faculty Award

  • Julia Cruz, MD, Emerita Clinical Professor of Medicine

AΩA Class of 2023

  • Kayla Authelet | Emergency Medicine, Alameda Health System-Highland Hospital, California
  • Jordan Price Barton | Emergency Medicine, San Antonio Military Medical Center-Army
  • Lauryn Brown | Radiology, University of Washington Affiliations Hospitals
  • Morgan Burke | Internal Medicine, University of Southern California
  • Elizabeth Anne Clark | General Surgery, Carolinas Medical Center
  • Elisabeth K. Davis | Pediatrics/LAUnCH Community Health, Children’s National Hospital
  • Alexander Dick | Child Neurology, Children’s Hospital-Philadelphia
  • Margaret Duval | Anesthesiology, New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center
  • Gabriel Esmailian | General Surgery, Indiana University School of Medicine
  • Zachary Falk | Internal Medicine, New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center
  • Fiona Fimmel | Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
  • Samuel I. Fuller | Orthopaedic Surgery, University at Buffalo School of Medicine
  • Brian Giang | Anesthesiology, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
  • Vrinda Gupta | Internal Medicine, Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Subhash Gutti | Interventional Radiology, Rush University Medical Center
  • Colleen Hamilton | Internal Medicine, Harbor-University California Los Angeles Medical Center
  • Jane Henriques | Pediatrics, Children’s National Hospital
  • Christina Kallik | Neurology, New York University Grossman School of Medicine
  • Simran Kaur Kalsi | Psychiatry, Thomas Jefferson University
  • Emma Keegan | Obstetrics-Gynecology, Pennsylvania Hospital
  • Sophia Khan | Obstetrics-Gynecology, Saint Joseph Hospital SCL Health, Colorado
  • Rebecca Kolodner | Obstetrics-Gynecology, University of California San Diego Medical Center
  • Nicolas Leighton | General Surgery, University of Southern California, California
  • Anna Mattson | Obstetrics-Gynecology, Kaiser Permanente-Santa Clara
  • Erika McCormick | Research Fellow – Dermatology, the George Washington University
  • Matthew McHarg | Ophthalmology, California Pacific Medical Center
  • Samer Metri | Emergency Medicine, Kaiser Permanente-San Diego
  • Anthony Amin Milki | Pediatrics, New York Presbyterian Hospital Columbia University Medical Center
  • Ryan Mortman | Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center-Medical Education
  • Khashayar Mozaffari | Research Fellow, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Sophia Newton | Emergency Medicine, University of Cincinnati Medical Center
  • Justin Ong | Internal Medicine, University of Southern California
  • Varsha Parthasarthy | Dermatology, Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Theodore Quan | Orthopaedic Surgery, the George Washington University
  • Krithika Rao | Emergency Medicine, University of California Los Angeles Medical Center
  • Sedona Rosenberg | Ophthalmology, University of Virginia
  • Rachel Schwartz | Plastic Surgery, Carilion Clinic-Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine
  • Zoe Shancer | Internal Medicine, Duke University Medical Center
  • Peter William Sweetser | Emergency Medicine, the George Washington University
  • George Thomas | Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Minnesota Medical School
  • Julie Thomasian | Ophthalmology, the George Washington University
  • Christopher Wend | Emergency Medicine, Johns Hopkins Hospital
  • Elizabeth Wood | Obstetrics-Gynecology, Naval Medical Center San Diego
  • Tong Q. Yan | Family Medicine, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center
  • Samuel Yeroushalmi | Dermatology, New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center
  • Emily Youner | Otolaryngology, Case Western-University Hospital Cleveland Medical Center

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