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Outstanding Medical Teachers Honored With Siegel Awards

Published April 26, 2013

Eleven medical school teachers and five residents received 2013 Louis A. and Ruth Siegel Awards during an April 17 ceremony.

“Dr. Zionts’ lessons, his drive for knowledge and the way he treats his patients (provide) the template I will use as a future physician.”
Student comment about Siegel Award winner Michael Zionts, MD

The annual awards are the foremost means for medical students to recognize extraordinary professors and instructors in the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

This year’s awardees are from 11 departments: biochemistry, dermatology, family medicine, medicine, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, ophthalmology, pathology and anatomical sciences, pediatrics, psychiatry and surgery.

The winners are listed below, along with nominators’ comments read during the awards presentation, held in the atrium of the Biomedical Education Building.

Teaching in the Pre-Clinical Program

This professor teaches the difficult topic of metabolism “in a very organized and engaging manner that maximize(s) student comprehension and enjoyment.”

He “incorporates humorous anecdotes” into every lecture.

He “shows passion and enthusiasm for teaching” and always exudes “a humble demeanor and a concern for student success.”

Teaching in the Clinical Program

Students describe this teacher as “inspirational,” “refreshing” and “above all, compassionate.”

“His dedication to working with students and helping them learn and grow is unmatched.”

“His lessons, his drive for knowledge and the way he treats his patients (provide) the template I will use as a future physician.”

Volunteer Teaching

  • Dilip J. Patel, MD, clinical associate professor of ophthalmology

Known for developing an excellent rapport with his students, this physician provided valuable teaching during the surgical sub-specialties rotation and always took the time to answer students' questions.

He cares for his patients and also his students, always seeking their input and reviewing cases.

Resident Teaching

Described as “an exceptional doctor, educator and human being,” this resident “develops a wonderful rapport with everyone he works with.”

“The way he spoke with patients was exemplary and I hope to be able to one day treat patients as he did.”

“My experience in the Trauma Intensive Care Unit was hands down one of the most memorable times of my medical school career, and it was due to this resident.”

Special Recognition - Years 1 & 2 Faculty

Described by one student as “the unsung hero” of her medical education, this retired faculty member thoroughly enjoys teaching and “takes a genuine interest in her students’ well being.”

She “inpires her students to learn and to be the best students and future doctors they can be.”

Honorable Mention

Recipients of honorable mention also were recognized at the ceremony. They are:

Full-Time Teaching in the Pre-Clinical Program

Full-Time Teaching in the Clinical Program

Volunteer Teaching

  • Thomas N. Helm, MD, clinical professor of dermatology

Resident Teaching

Special Recognition - Years 1 & 2 Faculty

Peter T. Ostrow, MD, associate professor emeritus of pathology and anatomical sciences

About the Siegel Awards

Louis A. Siegel received his medical degree from UB in 1923 and served as an assistant professor of obstetrics-gynecology for 21 years. He was a dedicated clinical teacher who was able to inspire both medical students and house officers with enthusiasm and the spirit of inquiry.

Considerations for the Siegel Awards include instructional skill, ability to stimulate thinking and develop understanding, demonstration of sensitivity toward the human condition and ability to serve as a role model for students.

A student award committee comprised of representatives from each medical class reviews nominations provided by students and selects awardees in each category.