Alumni receive recognition
The College of Health Professions honored five distinguished alumni at its annual Honors Convocation, April 2.
These Health Professions graduates were recognized both for their professional and community contributions.
The following recipients of the 2006 College of Health Professions Alumni of the Year Awards are:
Nancy Dillon '71, Nursing Award
Recognized as a model for home health care nurses, Nancy Dillon serves as an excellent mentor and supervisor to her staff. She was cited for her "solid knowledge base," "highest level of integrity," and her fair and supportive supervisory skills. She continually advances her profession by participating in such initiatives as the Michigan Home Health Association Ethics committee to highlight ethics in homecare and hospice, and the New Detroit Coalition for the Multicultural Immersion Program to generate greater knowledge and appreciation of different cultures in Detroit.
As the educational supervisor for St. John Home Care, Dillon is responsible for the orientation and professional development of 300 employees. She also helps develop the clinical skills of nursing students by establishing clinical rotations through homecare and hospice settings. In addition to her professional activities, Dillon actively participates in community services through volunteer work in parish nursing and board membership on a mental health agency. As president of the College of Health Professions Alumni Council, she has demonstrated her leadership in strengthening linkages between the College and its alumni, as well as providing support to students through a mentorship program currently being piloted.
Jane Muscat '73, '75 '91, Health Services Administration/ Management Award
Currently a quality assurance consultant, Jane Muscat has demonstrated her dedication to learning through new jobs, new talents and new opportunities that allow her to share a variety of talents and abilities with others. Muscat is a lifelong learner and teacher as demonstrated by her undergraduate degrees in Dental Hygiene and Science and her graduate degree in Health Services Administration, consulting work, volunteer activities on committees and boards, and as an adjunct College of Health Professions faculty member.
She conveys particular sensitivity and devotion to those with mental health and developmental disabilities. Through community service, Muscat was able to utilize her expertise and leadership to stabilize the financial and service areas of an organization that benefits developmentally disabled citizens. She is recognized for this award by serving as "a wonderful role model in terms of service and dedication to the pursuit of learning and sharing of that learning."
David Dereczyk '79, Physician Assistant Award
As head of the physician assistants in Henry Ford Hospital's department of Emergency Medicine, David Dereczyk is recognized for his commitment as an educator and as a practitioner. He is well respected by all levels of the Henry Ford Hospital health care team and he treats everyone with equal respect. He regularly contributes to the development of new professionals by serving as a preceptor for UDM's Physician Assistant Program. His students view him as an excellent educator with high standards; this rotation "is usually one of the highlights of their clinical year." Even with a busy schedule, he often extends himself to students, such as offering to tutor a student beyond his preceptor rotation.
As a practitioner, Dereczyk provides care for the medically underserved not only in his professional practice but also through his community outreach activities. He volunteers at Harbor Light, a substance abuse program run by the Salvation Army, and he is a co-founder of Doctors for Global Health (DGH), a not-for-profit organization that promotes health, education, art and other human rights throughout the world. Since 1995, DGH has improved the health and well being of communities in numerous third world countries. Dereczyk also serves on DGH's Board of Directors as medical ethics counsel. Through his professional leadership and community outreach, Dereczyk serves as a role model for colleagues and students.
Kristine LaLonde '03, Nurse Anesthesia Award
As a CRNA at Henry Ford Hospital, Kristine LaLonde is "almost single-handedly responsible" for the return of Henry Ford Hospital as a clinical rotation site for UDM's Nurse Anesthesia students. She is "a quintessential role model" for UDM Nurse Anesthesia students rotating at Henry Ford Hospital, as she demonstrates extreme care and sensitivity to students. She has also handled ethical interdepartmental issues with compassion and expertise. In addition to coordinating the clinical activity, LaLonde is a frequent clinical instructor, who is greatly admired by her students in UDM's Nurse Anesthesia program. Through her professional endeavors in coordinating and working to improve the Henry Ford Hospital clinical site rotation, as well as her involvement in professional organizations such as AANA and MNA, LaLonde reflects her commitment to health care excellence.
Michaeline Raczka '80, '82, Allied Health Award
In her role as education coordinator at Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital, Michaeline Raczka manages the community health promotion activities, including health screenings, support groups, lifestyle enrichment program and speakers bureau. In addition, she has served as an instructor at Oakland Community College in the Nutrition program. As an advocate for a better life through nutrition and lifestyle, Raczka has designed and implemented teaching plans and materials, developed marketing strategies, and created communication materials to enhance the health and well being of community members.
She has served in various roles on professional organizations, such as the Michigan Dietetic Association, the Southeastern Michigan Dietetic Association, and the Macomb, Oakland and St. Clair Counties Dietetic Associations. She is also active in community services through the American Heart Association Heart and Stroke Network, the American Heart Association Southwest Oakland Region Board, Healthy People Healthy Oakland committees, and the National Wellness Institute. She receives this award in recognition of her extensive outreach efforts to improve the well being of community members.