School of Health Professions, Defining the Future of Healthcare. Dean Protas awards student with diploma. Three students look down at machines Two students examine a test tube. Seven students practice examiniations on test dummies. Seven students pose with a skeleton that is wearing scrubs, an apron, and face/head coverings. Five graduates posing in a group. Two students looking through their own microscopes. A professor pointing at a screen with student taking notes. Student inserting a tube inside the nose of a test dummy. Five students sitting on the floor, examining footprints. Three students reading from a program booklet. A large group of students addressing the crowd. One student lecturing to his classmates. A student measuring heartbeats from a patient's wrist. A professor pulling out and explaining a chart reading to two of his students.



For over a century, the University of Texas Medical Branch has dedicated its efforts toward improving the health of society - in Texas and beyond. Today the SHP offers baccalaureate degrees in Clinical Laboratory Sciences and Respiratory Care, master's degrees in Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Occupational Therapy, Health Professions, Nutrition & Metabolism and Physician Assistant Studies, and a professional doctorate in Physical Therapy. In addition to designing and implementing innovative ways to deliver instruction to students at distant locations, the school continuously explores opportunities to expand its program offerings and interprofessional learning.

Take The First Step - For more information about getting your education at UTMB, please contact the SHP Office of Academic and Student Affairs by phone at 409.772.3030 or by email at

Health Professions News

Dr. Giacino named 2017 Robert L. Moody Prize recipient

Drs. Joseph Giacino and Elizabeth Protas

Joseph Giacino, PhD was named the 2017 recipient of the Robert L. Moody Prize for Distinguished Initiatives in Brain Injury Research and Rehabilitation. Dr. Giacino was presented with the $10,000 prize and Tiffany pyramid at the Galveston Brain Injury Conference on May 4th. Dr. Giacino is the Director of Rehabilitation Neuropsychology and Research Associate in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston. He is also an associate professor at Harvard Medical School. Pictured above is Dr. Giancino with the dean. The second photo is all of the Moody Prize recipients who were present at the conference with the dean (far right) and Jim Lovelace, President and CEO of the Transitional Learning Center (far left).

Group photo of past Moody Prize recipients

Dr. Monique Pappadis selected to participate in NIA Scholars Program

Dr. Monique Pappadis

Congratulations to Rehabilitation Sciences' Monique Pappadis, PhD, who was recently selected to participate in the National Institute on Aging (NIA) Butler-Williams Scholars Program.

This is an intensive 5 day program geared towards emerging aging researchers and those with limited involvement in research on aging to learn more about research on aging and to further develop their interested in this challenging and important area.

SHP Kudos & Acknowledgments

Dr. Marci Contreras Dr. Janet Enderle

Congratulations to Marci Contreras (Physician Assistant Studies) and Dr. Janet Enderle (Clinical Laboratory Sciences), who completed the Scholars in Education Program, a 20-month long faculty development project on April 11, 2017. Contreras focused on "Recognizing victims of human trafficking and education for physician assistants". Dr. Enderle's project was the "Implementation of reflective writing in a Clinical Laboratory Science course."

Dr. Rebecca Galloway

Congratulations to Dr. Rebecca Galloway, Associate Professor in Physical Therapy, who was inducted into the Academy of Master Clinicians (AMC).

Dr. Michael Furtado

Congratulations to Dr. Michael Furtado, Associate Professor in Physical Therapy on his selection by the Academy of Master Teachers (AMT) as Educator of the Month for March 2017.

Training for the Future

School of Health Professions Introduces Two New Doctoral Programs

Screen capture of the Training for the Future article.

UTMB's School of Health Professions is looking to the future of patient care with two new programs: a Doctorate in Clinical Laboratory Sciences (DCLS) and a Doctorate of Occupational Therapy (OTD). In July 2016, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved both unique programs, which are aimed at improving patient care and providing health care professionals with innovative options to advance their career.

Read More: Training for the Future

Dr. Rasmussen Awarded $6.67 million for NIH Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity Consortium

Map of the United States with targeted spots wih the locations of the various sites that make up the Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity Consortium

Dr. Blake Rasmussen, professor and chair of the Department of Nutrition and Metabolism, has been awarded a 6-year $6.67 million NIH grant to participate in the $170 million Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity Consortium (MoTrPAC). UTMB will be working with the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio (Dr. Nicolas Musi - Site Principal Investigator) on this large project. Other UTMB faculty involved with the project include Dr. Doug Paddon-Jones, Dr. Elena Volpi, Dr. Melinda Moore, and Dr. Heidi Spratt.

The MoTrPAC Consortium, funded by the NIH Common Fund, will consist of 7 clinical centers from around the country including UTMB/UTHSCSA, University of Alabama Birmingham, Duke University, University of Pittsburgh, and UC Urvine.

The goal of the clinical centers is to recruit approximately 2700 healthy participants into exercise training clinical trials to determine how different types of physical activity alter the human body at the molecular level.

The consortium will also consist of three animal centers (Harvard, University of Florida, and UC Davis), a coordinating center (University of Florida), a bioinformatics center (Stanford University), and several chemical analyses sites.

Consortium researchers will develop a comprehensive map of the molecular changes after they collect and study samples from people of different races, ethnic groups, sex, ages and fitness levels.

"There is the potential for major discoveries and significant breakthroughs to be identified from the work of the consortium," says Rasmussen. "We strongly believe that a molecular map to help us understand how physical activity contributes to better health will be of great benefit."

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