The Magazine of The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine


Summer 2019 - Vol. 23 - No. 2

In Transition


From May 2018 through May 2019, we enthusiastically celebrated our 50th anniversary and our rich and distinguished past. It is now time to decide our future. Where we go from here is entirely up to us. The choices are endless—and they determine who we are and where we will be at our next milestone celebration. Our choices will move us forward.

The summer 2019 issue of Synapse is filled with people who are already moving us forward, taking charge of our future, changing the lives of those around them for the better.

UNR Med students recently had the extraordinary privilege of “walking in the shoes” of people who are moving forward one day at a time. Learn more about their experience at the Betty Ford Center with our expanded online content.

We’re taking you out to the ballgame—and the ski slope and the race course—with sports medicine fellows who are facilitating the forward motion of area athletes. Plus, you’ll read about our new clinical research center and how it’s supporting clinical research that will change the lives of our patients.

Finally, our cover story introduces you to members of the transgender community who have to sometimes take a step back for every two steps forward while navigating an uncertain and often biased health care landscape. We hope their stories will spark empathy, conversation and action.

Here’s to our next 50 years—onward, upward and always forward!

Tom Signature
Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D. Professor of Family and Community Medicine
Dean, School of Medicine | Vice President, Health Sciences

Class of 2019

M.D. Hooding Ceremony

2019 MD Graduates
Sanford Center for ageing Graduates

Celebration of Scholars in Aging

Resident Research
Day and Goodman Competition

Goodman Competition Awardees

Clinical Research Center

creates a hub for clinical, translational and educational research at UNR Med

Meet Dr. Mark Riddle

UNR Med Associate Dean for Clinical Research

Dr. Mark Riddle
Betty-Ford-Student holding coin

The Courage to Change

UNR Med Students spend a. week at the Betty Ford Center

In Transition

The Transgender community waits
for health care to catch up.
Oscar Delgato and Dr. Schwenk holding a proclimation


50th Anniversary Celebration

Medical Student

Class Updates

Student outreach clinic class picture
Dr examining a patient

Northern Nevada Cleft Palate Clinic

Returning the Favor

Dr. Francine Mannix gives back

Dr. Mannix portrait

A Team Effort

Sports Medicine Fellowship Program keeps physicians and area athletes at the top of their game
Students in a classroom with a mentor

Mentors in Medicine

Community faculty
give back

Training future physicians at the

Student Outreach Clinic

Dr. Spogen Fly Fishing
Dr. Hollen at hooding ceremony


A note from the School of Medicine Alumni Association. Membership starts at just $50.

Class Chat

To share your latest and greatest accomplishments, email

Accompanying photos are always appreciated.

UNR med faculty on the unr quad

Inclusive Medicine Series - Lena Tenny

“I tend to think of microaggressions as being like papercuts. If you get one papercut by itself, it’s not that big of a deal. But if every morning, you wake up and know you’re probably going to experience somewhere between zero and ten papercuts, over time, you might start to feel a certain way about paper. You start bracing for the impact.”

Lena Tenney, coordinator of public engagement for The Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at The Ohio State University, spoke Tuesday, April 23 about the danger of microagressions and how to be an active bystander. The Inclusive Medicine Series was presented by the College of Liberal Arts and the School of Medicine’s Office of Diversity of Inclusion.

Photo/Video: Brin Reynolds

Healthy Nevada Speaker Series

ADAM ALTER, PH.D. | Monday, November 18, 2019

Adam Alter, Ph.D., is the author of “Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked.” Alter’s groundbreaking study explores how tech companies and marketers work to fuel our collective tech obsession and how we can ultimately harness addictive products for the greater good.

Alter is an associate professor of marketing with an affiliated appointment in psychology at New York University. He researches judgment, decision-making and social psychology and is also the author of The New York Times bestseller “Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces That Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave.”

University of Nevada Reno School of Medicine Logo

Summer 2019 - Vol. 23 - No. 2

SYNAPSE | The official Magazine of The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine