Graduation Season 2018 came to an end with one final three-for-one extravaganza. Fellows completing training in allergy/immunology, endocrinology, and rheumatology were celebrated by two divisions on the top floor of the Midwest One Bank building just south of the old (no longer a) Post Office and the old (but still in use) Johnson County Courthouse. This vantage point gave attendees a new view of Iowa City, but their attention was rightly focused on the achievements of the departing fellows.
During an initial social hour guests could admire the graduates’ going-away displays featuring some photo collages and a mocked-up certificate (signed by Dr. Mickey Mouse). Guests could also sign a farewell banner for each of the graduates and take the opportunity to pose for photos. This also allowed for some interdisciplinary mingling for faculty and staff from both the Division of Immunology and of Endocrinology and Metabolism, who do not often have the chance to interact.
After the meal, the evening’s formal program began. First Endocrinology Division Director and Department of Internal Medicine Chair Dr. Dale Abel welcomed family and friends to the event. Dr. Abel expressed his gratitude for the chance to let the graduates’ guests know how much their loved one has meant to the program, the division, and the department. Dr. Abel was followed by a pre-recorded message from Dr. Mary Beth Fasano, Program Director for the Allergy/Immunology Fellowship, who was unable to attend. Equipped with visual aids, Dr. Fasano expressed her pride in and excitement for Dr. Julie Caraballo and Dr. Amanda Lewis and what they would achieve next. Associate Program Director Dr. Amy Dowden was on hand for pictures and certificate-handing. Each of the fellows were given the opportunity to speak, and Dr. Lewis did, but Dr. Caraballo would exercise a creative solution to her momentary speechlessness later in the evening.
Dr. Amal Shibli-Rahhal, Program Director of the Endocrinology Fellowship, came up next to describe the extensive merits of Dr. Jayashree Gowda. Dr. Gowda rose to thank the faculty who had mentored and trained her and she also thanked her family who were in attendance. Program Director of the Rheumatology Fellowship Dr. Rebecca Teutken then took the microphone to present Dr. Jimmy Varghese and Dr. Sanjeev Patil with their gifts and certificates. Dr. Teutken reminded the audience that both Dr. Varghese and Dr. Patil were part of a Quiz Bowl team that was so accomplished (winning three years in a row) at a national society meeting that Iowa has been banned from participating in the future.
Immunology Division Director Dr. Scott Vogelgesang then rose to introduce a video (embedded below) that Program Coordinator Cory Sheets had produced in the weeks leading up to the event. With aerial footage of the beautiful health sciences and University of Iowa Health Care campus intercut with reminiscences from each of the fellows, Mr. Sheets produced a moving tribute to the fellows’ time at Iowa.
After the video, Dr. Caraballo’s fiancé served as her translator reading the statement that she had difficulty getting through earlier, which was greeted with applause from an emotionally touched audience. The formal program concluded, but there was still time for a few more group photos. One last time these two divisions could enjoy their fellows and each other before time would take them in different directions, with the hope of reunions not far away on the horizon.
Congratulations to the graduating fellows!
Allergy / Immunology
Julie Caraballo, MD
Amanda Lewis, MD
Jayashree Gowda, MD
Sanjeev Patil, MBBS
Jimmy Varghese, MD