Surrounded by beautiful views in the Jordan Center atrium, returning alumni were treated to a wonderful view of the next generation of medical leaders at “Lunch and Learn: Meet Our Future Leaders.” Moderated by Gail Morrison, M.D. ’71, G.M.E. ’76, current and graduating students Egen Atkinson, M.D. ’16, W.G. ’16, Phillip Cohen, M.D. ’17, Abimbola Dairo, M.D. ’16, Sarah Huepenbecker, C ’12, M.D. ’16, and Ted Kreider, C ’10, G ’10, Ph.D. ’18, M.D. ’18, shared their thoughts on the School as well as their future plans – including careers in academic medicine, drug discovery, serving underserved communities, and ultimately giving back to future students through scholarship support.

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The Next Advances in Medicine

The future may not be ours to tell, but our faculty do have a read on where medical practice is heading. “The Future of Medicine: What’s in Store?” session featured Chief Scientific Officer Dr. Jonathan Epstein as moderator, with panelists Drs. Jill Baren, Lee Fleisher, C ’82, Frederic Bushman, and Amita Sehgal. Advances in biomedical technology, particularly wearable monitors and telemedicine, were hailed as new frontiers, along with micro­biomics and Big Data.


With wit and wisdom – and for the fifth consecutive year – our 50th Reunion panel kicked off Medical Alumni Weekend. The panelists of the Class of 1966, including Samuel Adebonojo, Michael Aronoff, Jerry Gardner, David Mishalove, and Fred Sanford – guided by moderator Alan Wein, Chief of Urology, a key Penn Medicine leader, and fellow member of the Class of 1966 – shared in marveling at the tremendous advances made across medicine throughout their careers.

Mini Talks

“Ideas Worth Spreading.” The pithy TED Talk slogan certainly hits the nail on the head for Penn’s own “Mini Talks,” moderated by Michael S. Parmacek, M.D., Chair of Medicine. 

David Fajgenbaum, M.D. ’13, W.G. ’15, M.Sc., kicked off the morning with the powerful story of his diagnosis in medical school with the rare Castleman disease, which led to his life’s work: better understanding and curing the disease. Dr. Fajgenbaum and his colleagues each had eight minutes to cover their areas of ex­pertise, which also included childhood trauma, sports medicine, and the U.S. health care system.

Other presenters included Kevin Volpp, M.D. ’98, G. ’97, Ph.D. ’98, Gary Dorshimer, M.D. ’81, Steven Berkowitz, M.D., Neha Vapiwala, M.D. ’01, and Julian Harris, M.D. ’08, M.B.A. ’08.


During an event-filled weekend, alumni took center stage at the awards presen­tation session opened by Dean J. Larry Jameson’s well-received annual State of the School message. William Bunney Jr., M.D. ’56, and Joseph Loscalzo, C ’72, Ph.D. ’76, M.D. ’78, were presented with Distinguished Graduate Awards. Class of 1966 members Joel Porter, M.D. ’66, and H. Linton Wray, M.D. ’66, were ac­knowledged with the Alumni Service Award. Roderick Wong, M.D. ’03, received the Young Alumni Award. 

Keynote from Nobel Award-winning Alum

Often the most surprising results hold the greatest scientific value. So says Nobel laureate Michael S. Brown, C ’62, M.D. ’66, Hon ’86, who joined a keynote discussion with Dean Jameson. “If you just confirm your hypothesis, then you didn’t learn anything,” said Dr. Brown, here to celebrate his 50th reunion. His most notable discov­ery, with partner Joseph L. Gold­stein, M.D., was how cells take up LDL cholesterol – which led to the development of cholesterol-lowering statins, helping millions reduce their risk of heart attack.



No Medical Alumni Weekend is com­plete without a night out on the town. Pictured here are classes in their 20th and 30th Reunion years – just a sample of the classes celebrating reunion dinners in Center City hotspots, such as Hyatt at The Bellevue and R2L.

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