Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) has announced that Alexander S. Nicholas, DO ’75, professor and chair, osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM), and Taylor E. Olian (DO ’19) and Hannah Shin (DO ’19), are this year’s recipients of the OJ Snyder Memorial Medal and the Mason W. Pressly Memorial Medals, respectively.
Both Dr. Nicholas and Ms. Olian will be honored at the College’s 120th Founders’ Day ceremony on Friday, January 25 at the Hilton Philadelphia City Avenue. Ms. Shin will be honored at a separate ceremony in the spring at Georgia Campus – Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (GA-PCOM).
Professor and chair, osteopathic manipulative medicine
Dr. Nicholas has been a member of the PCOM faculty since 1976, and in that time, he has touched the lives of countless osteopathic medical students. He is the 1996 recipient of the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching; the 2005 recipient of the American Osteopathic Association’s Mentor Hall of Fame Award; and the 2014 recipient of the Andrew Taylor Still Medallion of Honor. He also co-developed the first residency program in OMM with his father, and lectures internationally on the practice of OMM and its benefits. He also co-authored the widely used textbook Atlas of Osteopathic Techniques with his brother, Evan A. Nicholas, DO ’81, associate professor, OMM. Learn more about Dr. Nicholas.
Ms. Olian hopes to become a pediatrician and has been active in contributing to her future specialty during her time at PCOM. As president of the Robert Berger Pediatrics Society at PCOM, Ms. Olian worked to increase her and her colleagues’ exposure to pediatric subspecialties by expanding the club’s educational component to include alumni presentations. She has served the Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) in various roles including as assistant district representative and district representative for District 3 (covering Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, District of Columbia, Delaware and West Virginia), and as a member of the leadership council of the AAP’s Section on Pediatric Trainees—the Academy’s largest section—serving as its national liaison to the Section on Osteopathic Pediatricians. Learn more about Ms. Olian.
Ms. Shin has served her community tirelessly, volunteering in myriad ways while never sacrificing her academic excellence. Most notably, Ms. Shin founded the GA-PCOM chapter of the Health Career Academy (HCA), which encourages underrepresented minority students to pursue careers in health care. She has also served as the community service liaison for the Office of Student Affairs, a role in which she organized relief efforts for Louisiana flood victims; sponsored Thanksgiving baskets for veterans and their families; directed Camp Neuro, a weeklong summer camp hosted by GA-PCOM for high school students interested in medicine; and helped organize a fundraiser to provide two of those students with scholarships. She also served as vice president of Phi Chi Medical Fraternity and brought a chapter of the American Medical Women's Association to GA-PCOM. Ms. Shin is a recipient of the Silver Level award of the Council of Osteopathic Student Government Presidents for community service and most recently was named GA-PCOM’s Student DO of the Year. Learn more about Ms. Shin.
The OJ Snyder Memorial Medal is presented in memory of the co-founder of PCOM and is the College's highest award, which recognizes leadership and service to the osteopathic profession and to the institution. The Mason W. Pressly Memorial Medal is presented to students for their outstanding achievement and service to the College, the community and the osteopathic profession. Recipients are selected by representatives of the overall College community.
Also receiving honors at this year’s Founders’ Day celebration is Tina Woodruff, EdD, senior advisor to the provost, who will receive the PCOM Alumni Association Certificate of Honor. Learn more about Dr. Woodruff.
Founders’ Day celebrates the birth of PCOM in 1899 by Drs. Snyder and Pressly, who sought to bring the osteopathic philosophy of whole-person healthcare to Philadelphia. In addition to the offsite event, celebrations are planned on both College campuses.
Founded in 1899, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine has trained thousands of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms. PCOM offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy and school psychology, and graduate degrees in biomedical sciences, forensic medicine, mental health counseling, organizational development and leadership, physician assistant studies, school psychology, and public health management and administration. Our students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care to medically underserved populations in inner city and rural locations. For more information, visit pcom.edu.
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