KIRKSVILLE, Mo. (Oct. 27, 2007) – The Kirksville Osteopathic Alumni Association recognized A. T. Still University faculty and alumni during its award luncheon and assembly meeting at the American Osteopathic Association Conference on October 1 in San Diego, Calif. 

Jason Haxton, M.A., director of Still National Osteopathic Museum, was presented with the KOAA Honorary Membership Award. This award, established in 1948, recognizes individuals who have rendered meritorious service to osteopathic education. Haxton’s position with the museum allows him the opportunity to preserve the artifacts and history of the osteopathic medical profession.

Ron Winkler, president of Winkler Communication Services, which provides data and telecommunications service for ATSU, was also presented with the KOAA Honorary Membership Award. Winkler currently serves as president of Kirksville Regional Economic Development Inc., and is chairman of the Telecommunications Commission. 

Wilbur Hill, D.O., ’51, received the KOAA Distinguished Service Award. Unable to attend the luncheon in San Diego, Dr. Hill was presented the award during the alumni class reunion on October 18. This award is granted to alumni and friends of KCOM and KOAA who have provided outstanding service and/or financial support to KCOM and/or KOAA.

Peter Swofford, D.O., ’57, was named KOAA Alumnus of the Year. This prestigious annual award was established to recognize a KCOM graduate who has made outstanding contributions to KCOM and the osteopathic profession. As the KOAA Alumnus of the Year, Dr. Swofford wants to remind graduates that his generation paved the way for the open practice environment they enjoy and not to take it for granted.


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KIRKSVILLE, Mo. (Oct. 24, 2007) – A. T. Still University held an all-campus meeting on Friday, October 19, in observation of Founder’s Day. The meeting serves to enlighten alumni and students on the outstanding growth and development at the University’s Missouri and Arizona campuses.

President James J. McGovern, Ph.D., presented the state of the University address, reporting that ATSU is in the top 10 of doctoral degree-granting universities in the United States and enrollment has increased nearly 25 percent in 2007, jumping from 2,437 enrollments in 2006 to 3,072 enrollments this year.

Jon Persavich, Ph.D., dean of the online School of Health Management, said the number of online students has doubled in the last year. Enrollment currently stands at 400 online students who are working toward doctoral and master’s degrees via online courses.  

Dean of the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine, Philip Slocum, D.O., received a standing ovation following the state of KCOM address in which he acknowledged the hard work of faculty and staff in many accomplishments. Dr. Slocum shared words of wisdom with the Kirksville Campus from author Jim Collins: “Greatness is a matter of choice and discipline.”

Lori Haxton, M.A., associate vice president of ATSU admissions and alumni services, directed the Gold Medallion and Alumni Recognition Ceremony. This ceremony honors visiting alumni of the 50th anniversary class with a Gold Medallion and 50 year pin. Attending members of the 1987, 1967, and 1962 classes were recognized, receiving a pin representing the number of years since graduation. Members of the President’s Gold Medallion Club were also acknowledged.


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KIRKSVILLE, Mo. (Sept. 20, 2007) – A. T. Still University held its grand opening ceremony for the Connell Information Technologies Center (Connell Center) Thursday, September 20, 2007. Nearly 300 people including State Representative Rebecca McClanahan and Mayor Martha Rowe were in attendance at the event which included a traditional ribbon cutting and dinner.


The 55,748 square foot Connell Center is a high-tech medical education facility boasting a new osteopathic manipulative medicine laboratory with 100 patient tables; six human patient simulators; a wireless library with video-audio center and a student study complex. More than 80 miles of fiber optic cable were used in the building.


“Without the help and financial contributions from the citizens of Kirksville this $12 million state-of-the –art facility would not have been possible,” said President James J. McGovern, Ph.D.


The building of the Connell Center was a genuine partnership between the good citizens of Kirksville and ATSU. Kirksville residents contributed nearly $800,000 far exceeding the requirements of a generous matching grant from the Kresge Foundation.


“The high-tech equipment we will get to use in the Connell Center played a big role in my decision to attend ATSU,” said Christina Hirt, first year medical student.

“The Connell Center is a remarkable resource and a symbol of what can be accomplished when we all work together,” said President McGovern.


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KIRKSVILLE, Mo. (Sept. 19, 2007) – Beginning October 1, 2007, diabetes and heart disease control and prevention classes will be held every Monday throughout October (except Columbus Day October 8th) from 12:00-1:00 pm at the Sullivan County Health Department Conference room in Milan. In Kirksville, the classes will be held in the NeuroHope office at 702 North Marion Street, corner of Marion and Cottonwood.

The class is taught by Sarah Eber RD LD CDE, and is appropriate for people with pre-diabetes or diabetes of any type. Classes are free, but participants must pre-register by calling the Sullivan County Health Department. The program is sponsored by the Healthy For Life Programs – A.T.Still University, and the Northeast Missouri Area Health Education Center. 

For more information, please contact Doris Fountain, Healthy for Life Director, at 1.866.626.2878, ext. 2049.

These classes are supported in part by A.T. Still University’s and funds from Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) (Contract # ERS1867005) .


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KIRKSVILLE, Mo. (Aug. 29, 2007) Krista Willingham, a 2007 graduate of Drury University, participated in the traditional key transfer ceremony during the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine’s White Coat Ceremony in August. The annual White Coat Ceremony was initiated in 1996 and is designed to impress upon new students the significance and symbolism of entering the medical profession.

A first-year student at KCOM, Willingham accepted the key for the Class of 2011 and addressed her class:

“It is a great honor for me, and for our class of 2011, to become a part of the founding school of osteopathic medicine and to be entrusted with the privileges and responsibilities of carrying on this tradition,” said Willingham, who is from Rogersville, Mo. “I am excited about all that we will learn together: the studying, the working, and the training, and I am looking forward to the great physicians that we will become.This key unlocks the cabin where, 179 years ago, A. T. Still was born, a single man who forever changed the face of medicine. His legacy is passed on to us today, here as the class of 2011 is born, and we are proud to commit ourselves to the growth and welfare of osteopathic medicine.”

During the annual White Coat Ceremony, the vice president for medical affairs and dean formally inducts new students into the school by asking them to join him in reading the Osteopathic Pledge of Commitment. This is followed by the transfer of the key for the log cabin, birthplace of A. T. Still, from the second-year class to the first-year class. This symbolizes the obligation freshmen have in preserving the heritage of KCOM and osteopathic medicine.


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