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University of Iowa News

Aug. 15, 2006

Schmidt Named The Harold A. Myers Professor

Thomas J. Schmidt, Ph.D., professor of physiology and biophysics in the University of Iowa Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine, has been named the Dr. Harold A. Myers Professor in the Basic Sciences. The appointment was effective July 1 and is a three-year term with the possibility for one renewal.

The Dr. Harold A. Myers Professorship in the Basic Sciences was established by gifts to the UI Foundation from the Myers family. The Myers Professorship recognizes a Ph.D. faculty member who exhibits exemplary skill and passion for teaching and leadership in medical education. Harold Myers, M.D., was a surgeon who earned a medical degree from the UI in 1934 and a bachelor's degree in 1930; he died in 1997. The UI Foundation is the channel preferred by the UI for private gifts supporting all areas of the UI.

Schmidt, a UI faculty member since 1983, is widely recognized for his contributions to medical education, and he plays a prominent role in curriculum development at the UI Carver College of Medicine. He is co-director of the Human Organ Systems course and curriculum co-director for the second semester of the first year. In addition to teaching the Human Organs System course, Schmidt also is a principal instructor in the Medical Cell Biology Course. He also is a faculty facilitator in the Case-Based Learning component of Foundations on Clinical Practice I.

Schmidt's passion and skill as an educator have earned him numerous awards, including the UI Collegiate Teaching Award in 1997, the Marion L. Huit Award for Excellence in Teaching and Service in 1998, the Dr. John P. Long Teaching Award in the Basic Sciences in 2000 and the College of Medicine Faculty Service Award in 2001. At the national level, Schmidt also was a finalist for the American Physiological Society's prestigious Arthur C. Guyton Physiology Teacher of the Year Award in 2001.

"Dr. Schmidt is one of our finest educators and is widely recognized for his innovations to the basic science curriculum," said Kevin Campbell, Ph.D., the Roy J. Carver Chair of Physiology and Biophysics and head of the department. "Medical students at the UI and beyond benefit greatly from the dedication and expertise he brings to teaching and curriculum development. His pursuit of excellence and innovation in medical education are precisely the qualities the Harold A. Myers Professorship was created to honor."

In addition to his contributions to medical education at the UI, Schmidt also is actively involved in the efforts of several national and international professional organizations, including the American Physiological Society and the International Association of Medical Science Educators, that aim to improve medical education for all students.

Schmidt also runs an active research program investigating the mode of action of mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid hormones, two major classes of adrenocorticosteroids that affect the growth, differentiation and function of a wide variety of tissues and target cells.

Schmidt earned a doctoral degree in physiology in 1976 from Cornell University.

Jeanne Snyder, Ph.D., UI professor of anatomy and cell biology, previously held the Harold A. Myers Professorship from 2000 to 2006.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Health Science Relations, 5135 Westlawn, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1178

CONTACT: Jennifer Brown, 319-335-9917