Student Life

Student Brings D.O. Awareness Across the Nation

Student D.O. Courtney StallingsTouro University California students are dynamic, engaged, and committed to applying their knowledge in the real world. Given the array of interests they each hold, TUC students share a passion for learning, caring, and serving

A passionate determination to educate pre-med students about osteopathic medicine has taken Courtney Stallings, a fourth year student at Touro University California’s College of Osteopathic Medicine, from New York to California.  

On December 17th, 2014, hundreds of pre-med students gathered in various locations throughout the country for National Osteopathic Night Out, a casual meet-and-greet event catered for pre-medical students to learn about osteopathic medical school, the application process, and what it takes to be an osteopathic physician. 

It was a one-day event, presented by osteopathic medical students, and remotely organized by an enthusiastic Stallings. 

“We had 93 student volunteers from 24 medical schools, and more than 350 attendees in 25 states,” she said about the National Osteopathic Night Out event. 

The concept was created by the 5C Happy Hour (Claremont Colleges), which is presented to alumni students and provides a platform of conversation between current and prospective osteopathic students. 

“I wanted to provide pre-med students with opportunities that I didn’t have when I started my search for medical schools,” the Scripps College alum said. “I also want to increase osteopathic awareness among the pre-med community.” 

Courtney, who is on rotations and traveling across the country, worked with the Students Osteopathic Medical Association (SOMA), the National Pre-SOMA, and the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine to bring this national event to fruition. And no doubt, there are more to follow. 

“I’m thinking about repeating this again in the future,” Stallings said, who also hosted an event in Phoenix. “There were a number of places (across the country) that we were unable to get to this time around.”

Chanukah Celebration and Menorah Lighting - 2014

On Wednesday, December 17th, from 11:30 A.M. – 1:00 P.M. Touro University will hold its annual Chanukah Celebration and Menorah Lighting in the Lander Hall Gym.  This event sponsored by our campus Rabbi Elchonon Tenenbaum is open to the entire campus community and features a live Jewish Blues performance by Saul Kaye.  Saul’s music is a natural marriage of Jewish history, characters and liturgy with the Blues. 

Refreshments of Sufganiyot (Jelly Doughnuts), Latkes, Chanukah Chocolate Coins, Coffee and Tea will be provided.

Student Research Takes Stage at OMED

During the 16th Bureau of International Osteopathic Medicine Seminar (BIOM), which held its 16th Annual International Seminar and Poster Session, “Osteopathic Medicine: Globally Integrated Education and Implementation,” on Saturday, October 25th during OMED 2014 in Seattle, myriad students competed during this challenging and thought-provoking competition. The focus was on the international medical experiences of osteopathic students and physicians. Read More

2014 Club Day

Touro University California had another successful Club Day on Wednesday, August 27, 2014.  This annual event provided students with an opportunity to discover and join various groups on campus.  Hundreds of students participated in the event with food, beverages, music and a scavenger hunt.

See photos from the event and “Four Minutes of Club Day” on the TUC Facebook Page.

Script your Future Becomes an Award-Winning Video

Congratulations to TUC's Pharmacy students for winning national award with their "Script Your Future Video." 

Keeping with Touro's mission to serve, to lead, and to teach, students from the College of Pharmacy, College of Osteopathic Medicine, and the Public Health Program, compiled a video to promote medication adherence. The genesis for this idea stemmed from an annual campaign that educates the community on the importance of medication adherence to reduce poor health outcomes. 

Touro students filmed their work of distributing prescription wallet reminder cards, blood pressure logs, blood glucose logs, and brochures to IPPE sites, APPE sites, preceptors’ clinics, physician offices, homeless clinics, community health fairs, and at TUC’s Student-Run Free Clinic. 

Ultimately, this 2:20 minute video documented their reach of interacting with nearly 2,700 patients through partnerships with local community organizations at community events. The group of students also emphasized outreach to underserved populations by distributing campaign materials in Vietnamese, held health screenings at local women’s and men’s homeless shelters, and worked with the Student-Run Clinic to conduct medication reviews and physical exams. 

The results: Touro University California’s College of Pharmacy garnered the National Target Market Challenge Award in the Third Annual Script Your Future contest, which saw participation by 2,200 future health care professionals and reached more than 6 million consumers nationwide. 

TUC will be featured in an upcoming Google+ Hangout "Best Practice in Med Adherence" Google+Hangout on Thursday, August 7th, at 9 a.m. To learn about best practices in community medication adherence campaigns across the U.S. 

To Join the Google+ Hangout:

College of pharmacy students awarded top prize in national contest

TUC College of Pharmacy (COP) students ROCK! Several of our COP students were National Winners this past weekend at the SNPhA Conference in Arlington, VA. They are:

Walmart SNPhA/Sam's Club Prescription for Service Award (National Winners - $10,000 Scholarship): Jackie Ho, Annie Tran, Dennis Kim, Emily Chee, and Terry Pang
Walmart SNPhA/Sam's Club NPHA Future Leaders Scholarship (National Winners - $10,000 Scholarship): Ken Mak
Book Award: Jasmine Reber
Poster Presentation Award: Jasmine Reber and Jackie Ho
SNPhA Clinical Skills Competitors: Jackie Ho, Megan Pokorney, Ashley Butler, and Aleyna Fong


Dinner for Outgoing and Incoming SGA Members

On Monday, April 7, 2014 Touro University California hosted a meeting and special dinner honoring the outgoing and incoming SGA Board members.  The event was attended by Touro CEO & Senior Provost Shelley Berkley, COO & Provost Dr. Marilyn Hopkins, Dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine Dr. Michael Clearfield, Dean of Student Services Lisa Waits, Assoc. Dean for Student Services Dr. James Binkerd, Director of Student Activities Dr. Irene Favreau, and Rabbi Elchonon Tenenbaum.  View photos from the dinner on facebook.

Cultural Club Serves the Community

The Filipino American Medical Society (FAMS) was one of the very first cultural clubs at Touro University California to hold free healthcare events in the community. Recently, FAMS had their annual event at Seafood City Vallejo and served over 80 patients in Blood Pressure Screening, Medication Therapy Management and/or Osteopathic Manipulation.

It was a great interprofessional collaboration in which FAMS members applied practical skills in their respective disciplines, but more importantly, FAMS members were able to give back to the community.

FAMS plans to continue this tradition each year! View a picture of the event on the TUC Facebook.

The D.O. Difference

Zubin Sedghi, a second-year student at Touro University California COM (TUCOM), decided to take on a challenge given by the Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of California (OPSC) to create a video that educates the public about Osteopathic medicine and its profession. His use of metaphorical visuals garnered him first place! 

“As Osteopathic physicians, one of the biggest challenges we face is public relations.  It is also where we have the opportunity to make the most progress; we need to inform the public about what we believe in and how we practice medicine,” Sedghi said. “The tenets of our profession encourage optimization of natural mechanisms, to help our physiology and psychology work to heal itself.  In many ways, our approach is organic and nature based. I decided to work with that theme.” 

Student doctors at both TUCOM and Western University took on this challenge as part of a strategy to increase student participation in the OPSC club. The winner was selected by two criteria--social media likes (on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter etc.) and voting by an OPSC panel. The OPSC intends to make this a yearly contest. 

Using a simple iPhone to capture the video, Sedghi took first place and thanks Dr. Wagner of TUC for helping to reinstate the OPSC club. He also thanks Dr. Wagner and Ms. Kathleen Creason for their support and motivation.

The D.O. Difference from Zubin Sedghi on Vimeo.


Script Your Future

The National Consumers League is a private non-profit organization that .advocates consumer safety.  “Script Your Future” is an annual campaign educating the community on the importance of medication adherence to reduce poor health outcomes. 

Students are provided with prescription wallet reminder cards, blood pressure logs, blood glucose logs, and brochures to distribute among patients.  Students from all pharmacy organizations have collaborated and distributed these materials at IPPE sites, APPE sites, preceptors’ clinics, physician offices, homeless clinics, community health fairs, and at Touro University California’s Student-Run Free Clinic. As the substantial population increases its medication use, pharmacy students have promoted medication adherence both in and outside the health care setting. 

The pharmacy program has compiled its outreach efforts while working interprofessionally with other students in the program and has compiled this video to promote medication adherence. 

Note: Credit for Video – Benjamin Yu, 1st Year Pharmacy Student

Building a Community Garden

Hidden behind wooden panels and nestled by the steps leading to Farragut Inn, a secluded campus garden breathes life into an array of vegetables recently planted by the Touro University California’s (TUC) Nutrition Club. 

“This is really an important part of a greater movement to get people back in touch with the food they eat and the community they live,” said Travis Israel, second-year student at TUC’s College of Osteopathic Medicine. “Understanding how important it is for people to have exposure to the process of growing food, we decided to bring that experience to Touro.” 

The Nutrition Club floated the idea of starting a campus garden early in the 2013-2014 school year once they realized the space on campus was available. Equipped with members who had experience in working with farm to cafeteria programs, the Club moved forward and started their first work day at the end of last semester. 

Currently, the Club has a volunteer base of about 30 students along with some key administrative contributors, such as Jane Bogner of Food Services, Jay Ritchie of Facilities, and Rabbi Elchonon Tenenbaum, to name a few. 

After pulling weeds and developing infrastructure, the group planted their first round of vegetables and expect to see the growth of Swiss Chard, Butter Lettuce, Green Onions, Garlic, Peppermint, Dill, Echinacea, and a Pomegranate tree in the near future. 

“We want this garden to provide an environment for students, faculty, and staff to learn and teach one another about healthy food and medicinal plants,” Israel said. “Some of the food produced in the garden will be used by the kitchen to make special meals for the café.” 

Ideally, the garden space will foster TUC’s Interprofessional community and promote wellness on multiple levels, he added. 

The garden area is home to 10-4x8 foot beds, various pots, composting bins, and a leisure area with a table and chairs. 

“This is a good thing for the University,” Israel said. “I hope the next group of students see this and keep moving the project forward.”

Pharmacy Students Win Annual Contest

After a competitive and challenging competition, four students from TUC’s Pharmacy Program won the 3rd Annual AMCP Pharmacy and Therapeutics (P&T) Competition 2014. Students Thuy Vo, Bernice Wright, Olga Shimunova, and Jackie Ho, all third-year pharmacy students, will now submit their materials for the AMCP P&T National Competition held in Tampa Bay, Fla., in April. 

The TUC AMCP chapter hosts a local P&T Competition each year.  The winning local team has the opportunity to submit materials for consideration in the national competition held at the AMCP Annual Meeting & Showcase.  

This P&T Competition exposes pharmacy students to the inner workings of a P&T Committee; improves managed care pharmacy awareness; enhances drug information, critical thinking and presentation skills; provides “real world” experience and; offers a unique opportunity to pharmacy students. 

The local and national competition allows students to view different styles and processes that can be used in effective formulary management and provide exposure to, and a working knowledge of AMCP’s Format for Formulary Submissions. 

AMCP Judges included Dr. Vinson Lee (Amgen, Inc.), Dr. Rodney Gedey (Healthnet), Dr. Douglas Hillblom (Optum Rx), and Dr. Adrian Wong (Touro University, CA).

View photographs of the event on the TUC facebook.

Students Rally to Help the Philippines

The Filipino American Medical Society (FAMS) recently conducted a fundraiser for the people of the Philippines. The Philippines suffered two major calamities within a short period of time. They first experienced a 7.2 earthquake followed by a super typhoon. Many victims were left without homes, with no access to water/food and medical needs. Areas were left completely destroyed and some places inhabitable.  

This hit home for a FAMS board member, who comes from the island where the epicenter of the earthquake hit.  

As a result, six board members held a campus-wide raffle and sold tickets for two weeks. Showing the spirit of giving during this trying time, students and faculty donated prizes. And when FAMS held a table outside of the Touro Idol contest, parents/family/friends of students purchased tickets. 

Ultimately, FAMS raised just shy of $1,000, which will be donated to the nonprofit organization national Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON). NAFCON will directly send the donations to their partners in the Philippines, the  Bayanihan Alay sa Sambayanan, or BALSA (People’s Cooperation for the People), a national grassroots relief and rehabilitation organization composed of broad church-based organizations, schools, disaster response NGOs, and individuals, working with victims of disasters in the Philippines.

Students Gather Donations for the Philippines

Due to recent events in the Philippines, Sigma Sigma Phi is collecting donated items in the Lander Hall Lobby every day at lunch from 11/18/13-11/25/13. These items will be brought to the Philippines on November 30 with boxes full of typhoon disaster relief goods to the Philippine Red Cross. 

Items needed: 

  • Non-Perishable Food: PULL TOP canned vegetables, fruits etc.; ready to eat dry goods such as nuts, peanut butter, dried fruits, granola and trail mixes, jerkies, ready to eat snacks; ready- to-eat meals or MREs etc.
  • Personal Care Products: Antibacterial soap, hand sanitizer, toothpaste, toothbrushes, shampoo, body wash, deodorant, lotion etc.
  • Cleaning supplies: powdered laundry detergents, general cleaner (dry), sponges, bleach (powdered form), mops, scrub brushes, buckets, rubber gloves etc.
  • Paper products: Toilet paper, paper towels etc.
  • Baby and infant supplies: Diapers, wipes, diaper rash ointment, baby wash, baby shampoo, baby lotion etc.
  • First-Aid items: Bandages, gauze, pads, first aid tape, antiseptic creams, hydrogen peroxide, alcohol, latex gloves, instant cold packs etc.

The Filipino American Medical Society (FAMS) is also holding a raffle ticket fundraiser to help the victims. All proceeds will be donated through the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON).

Tickets are $2 each; three tickets for $5; seven tickets for $10. Prizes include Starbucks gift cards, a pair of Regal Cinema movie tickets, TUC sweater (donated by COP 2016), TUC mug (donated by APhA), dinner for two in Napa or San Francisco, and an iPad mini case (donated by Jasmine Reber, COP 2016).

Tickets on sale through November 27th and will be sold outside the Auditorium during Touro Idol. Drawing will be on December 2, 2013.

Time to Experience Chanukah at Touro University California

Rabbi Elchonon Tenenbaum is taking the Chanukah celebration to new heights at Touro University California with a special presentation of Ari Lesser, singer, songwriter, rapper and spoken work artist from Cleveland, Ohio! Read More

Congratulations TUC College of Pharmacy

Congratulations to Touro University College of Pharmacy (COP) 4th-year students Parul Singh and Amarachi Uzosike for winning the 2013 California Society of Health-System Pharmacy (CSHP) Seminar Clinical Skills Competition held in Disneyland Hotel, Anaheim on November 2-3, 2013!  Eight Pharmacy schools competed for the title, including UCSF, UCSD, University of the Pacific, Loma Linda, Western, USC, and Cal Northstate, where students were tested on written and oral skills for two days. Parul Singh and Amarachi Uzosike will be competing at the national ASHP Midyear Meeting in Orlando, Florida in December.  This is the 3rd time in six years that Touro has taken home the state championship in the Clinical Skills Competition!  Congratulations for making Touro so proud!

TUC Club Day

More than 30 TUC campus organizations were represented at Touro’s annual Club Day, which provided students with an opportunity to join various groups of interests and become new members. An array of tables speckled the Grove area where more than 500 students were presented with food, beverages, music, games, and fun.  See photos from the event on the Touro University California Facebook Page.

TUC Students Hold Relay for Life

On Thursday, August 8th 2013, the TUC Student Government Association held its first fun event of the year with a Mini Color Relay for Life.  This event, which raised more than $600 towards the American Cancer Society, was a chance to meet new students, win prizes and eat great food.  See photos from the event on the Touro University California Facebook page or learn more in an article published in the Vallejo Times Herald.

Pharmacy wins Community Outreach Award

Congratulations to COP, whose students garnered the “Script Your Future Team Challenge’s Health Disparities, Under-represented Community Outreach Award.”  This motivated group has been recognized among peers from across the U.S. for targeting underserved populations in outreach efforts, including uninsured Hispanic, African American, and South and Southeast Asian populations.  Read the press release.

TUC's 13th Commencement Ceremony

On Sunday, June 2nd Touro University California held it's 13th Commencement Ceremony.  462 degree candidates received their diplomas at the Masonic Auditorium in San Francisco.  This is Touro's largest graduating class.  Visit facebook for photos of this momentous occasion.

College of Osteopathic Medicine Pinning Ceremony

The College of Osteopathic Medicine hosted the “Class of 2015 Pinning Ceremony” on May 10th inside Lander Hall Auditorium. More than 100 family members and friends attended the ceremony.  The event included recognition to Drs. Catherine West, Janet M. Burns, and Athena W. Lin, who were selected by the students as Teachers of the Year. Additionally, the Student of the Year award was presented to Kira Bendixen, OMSIII. Congratulations to all four! The event ended with a memorial to COM student Zach Hauser, with students and faculty performing a touching rendition of “Sweet Home Alabama.”  Visit our facebook page for photos.

Students enjoy Holi Festival

TUC Students enjoy Holi, a festival of color and celebration of spring on April 25th at the Grove on campus.  Students celebrated with water balloons, water slides, and music!  Click here to visit Facebook for photos of the festival.

Dinner for Outgoing and Incoming SGA Students

On Thursday, April 11, 2013 Dr. Marilyn Hopkins hosted a special dinner honoring the outgoing and incoming SGA Board members.  Visit facebook for photographs of this annual event.

A Dream To Save Lives

Saving lives is a dream for TUC graduate Mike Wells.  The inception for this vision stemmed years ago, when he worked with his uncle – a paramedic – during ambulance runs. He was fascinated by the “interventions that would have a direct impact on patient lives.”  To read more, click here.

Applauding Our Graduates

New beginnings were launched on Sunday at the Masonic Auditorium in San Francisco as Touro University California recognized the graduating class of 2012, representing students from the Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, Pharmacy, and Education and Health Sciences.  To read more, click here.

Continuing a Legacy

Christy Murphy is a recent Gates Millennium Scholars recipient and enrolled in Touro’s Master of Public Health Program. Read about her journey to Touro University California here.

Motivation Creates Change

Change begins with a teacher. This is the belief that carries Celeste Westbay forward, a Touro University California Multiple Subject candidate who is determined to make a difference in her student’s lives. To read more, click here.

Blending Music and Medicine

For Jennifer Allison Tran, second year osteopathic medicine student at Touro University California, a red balloon helped her crusade take flight. To read about the Red Balloon project, click here.

Proud to Serve

Serving our country is a goal for College of Pharmacy student Stella Lee, which is why Touro University California was a perfect fit for her to be commissioned into the U.S. Air Force. To read more, click here.

PA Director Receives Distinguished Alumna

Grace P. Landel, Program Director of Touro University California’s Joint MSPAS/MPH Program, is this years recipient of the Baylor College of Medicine Distinguished Alumnus Award, School of Allied Health Sciences. To read more, click here.

The Power of Discovery

There is a love for research embedded within Rung-chi Li, a the third-year Osteopathic Medical Student at Touro University California (TUC), College of Medicine. In fact, it stems with an admiration for life. To read more, click here.