GREAT Symposium & Keynote Speakers


GREAT Symposium Workshop: "Academic Integrity"

Title of talk: "Academic Integrity: Beyond the Classroom"

March 27, 2017, 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm, Bird Library Auditorium (LIB 299)

Gregory M. Heiser, PhD

Associate Provost for Student Academic Integrity

Ethics Specialist, Office of Compliance, OU Norman


Melissa S. Medina, EdD

Associate Dean for Assessment, Evaluation, and Teaching Preparation & Development

Presidential Professor, College of Pharmacy, OUHSC

This is a co-sponsored event between the Student Government Association (SGA) and the Graduate Student Association (GSA) at the OUHSC.



GREAT Symposium Workshop: "Cultural Awareness"

Title of talk: "Preparing Diverse Leaders for an Inclusive and Global Society"

March 28, 2017, 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm, Bird Library Auditorium (LIB 299) 


Carrie McClain, MHR, LPC

 Associate Director of University Community

University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

As the Associate Director of the University Community Office at OUHSC, Carrie McClain is responsible for the coordination of services and programs offered by the University Community Office, which enhances OUHSC’s commitment to diversity and recognizes the essential worth of each individual and value differences amongst groups. Carrie received her Bachelors and Master’s degrees in Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma. Throughout her career in social services, Carrie has worked extensively with individuals within lower socio-economic and underrepresented communities, and in 2015 she became a Licensed Professional Counselor.



GREAT Symposium Workshop: "Career Development"

Title of talk: "Lessons From an Unlikely Career in Biomedical Research"

March 29, 2017, 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm, Bird Library Auditorium (LIB 299) 

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Dr. Sanjay Bidichandani

Section Head of Genetics

CMRI Claire Gordon Duncan Endowed Research Chair in Pediatric Medical Genetics

David L. Boren Professor of Pediatrics

Adjunct Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Sanjay Bidichandani, MBBS, PhD, received his Medical Degree from the University of Pune, India. He then studied Medical Genetics at the University of Glasgow, Scotland where he received a Master’s and a PhD. Subsequently, Dr. Bidichandani did postdoctoral fellowship training in Neurogenetics at the Baylor College of Medicine, Houston Texas.  During his postdoctoral fellowship, he was involved in research that led to the discovery of the gene involved in Friedreich’s ataxia. Over the past 15 years, Dr. Bidichandani has continued to contribute to the field of Friedreich’s ataxia through studies involving the underlying genetic and epigenetic defects and has consistently received funding from the National Institutes of Health and the Muscular Dystrophy Association. He is currently a Professor of Pediatrics, Head of Pediatric Genetics, Adjunct Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and a Member of the Oklahoma Center for Neuroscience. He has mentored several PhD students and postdoctoral fellows. In addition to his extensive experience in research and teaching, Dr. Bidichandani has also served as the Vice President for Research at the Muscular Dystrophy Association, and as Assistant Dean in the College of Medicine, and is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Friedreich Ataxia Research Alliance. He is a four-time recipient of the Aesculapian award for excellence in teaching in the College of Medicine, and has received the OU Board of Regents Award for Superior Teaching. In 2016, Dr. Bidichandani was the inaugural recipient of the David L. Boren Professorship, awarded for outstanding teaching, research, and leadership. 


GREAT Symposium Round Table Discussion:

"Where Can Graduate Education Take You: A Panel Discussion"

March 30, 2017, 9:00 am - 10:30 am, Bird Library Auditorium (LIB 299)

Confirmed Panelists:

  • Thomas Kupiec, PhD - CEO, Analytical Research Laboratories (ARL) and DNA Solutions, Inc., Oklahoma City, OK
  • Sherry Kurtz, MS - Biologist, Center for Evaluation and Research (CBER), Lab of Mycobacterial Diseases and Cellular Immunity, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Washington, DC
  • Aaron Wendelboe, PhD - Associate Professor of Biostatistics and Epidemiology at OUHSC, and Fellow in the University of Oklahoma Center for Intelligence and National Security, Oklahoma City, OK
  • Lori Garman, PhD - Assistant Professor of Biology, Oklahoma Christian University, Oklahoma City, OK
  • James Papin, PhD - Chief, Virology, Comparative Medicine; Assistant Professor, Dept. of Pathology, OUHSC, Oklahoma City, OK


GREAT Symposium Keynote Speaker

March 30, 2017, 1:30pm - 2:15pm, Samis Center Auditorium


Steven Novella, MD

Assistant Professor of Neurology, Yale School of Medicine

Founder and Executive Editor of Science Based Medicine

Host, The Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast

Dr. Steven Novella is an Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Yale School of Medicine. He earned his Medical degree from Georgetown University and completed his residency training in neurology at Yale University. Dr. Novella is active in both clinical research and in medical education at various levels including; patients, the public as well as medical and health professionals. An expert in neuroscience, Dr. Novella focuses his practice on neuromuscular disorders. His personal blog, NeuroLogica Blog, is contemplated as one of the top neuroscience blogs and covers issues in neuroscience as well as the interchange of science with the media and society. Dr. Novella is also the founder and senior editor of Science-Based Medicine, a medical blog devoted to promoting the highest standards of basic and clinical science in medical practice. Dr. Novella is president and cofounder of the New England Skeptical Society, a nonprofit educational organization designed to expand public understanding of science. He is also the producer and host of the organization's award-winning science show, The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, where he explores the latest scientific discoveries, the crosstalk between science and the mainstream media, and the extent of public understanding and response towards science. He is also a senior fellow and Director of Science-Based Medicine at the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF), a fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI) and a founding fellow of the Institute for Science in Medicine.