The CU Anschutz Student Senate announced this year’s Excellence Awards this week. The individuals and groups recognized for their efforts are:

Outstanding Community Service by an Individual
Suzuho Shimasaki, Doctorate of Public Health
Shimasaki is deeply committed to promoting health equity and cultural inclusivity through her numerous service activities that impact change at the community and state levels. Locally, Suzuho serves on the Basic Human Needs and Inclusivity Committees at the Denver Foundation and as a recent board Member at the Asian Pacific Development Center. She is the founder and coordinator of the Explore Public Health Program, designed to encourage young people of color ages 18-25 from Aurora and Denver to pursue careers in public health. At the state level, Suzuho is recognized as an emerging and respected public health leader making significant contributions through her service on the Colorado Health Equity Commission and the Colorado Public Health Association.

Outstanding Service to the University by an Individual
Balaji Sridhar, Chemical Engineering, Medical Scientist Training Program

CEO and co-founder of Nanoly Bioscience Inc.         This startup company is dedicated to increasing global access to vaccines by eliminating the need to refrigerate them. Development of vaccines that don’t require refridgeration allows for programs and services that the university is involved in internationally to provide vaccines to remote locations and places where refrigeration is not a possibility. Nanoly’s technology enables cheap, effective and safe delivery of vaccines to anywhere in the world.

The nanoparticle-based chemical shield is currently being developed by the company to allow vaccines to survive without refrigeration and extend storage time.

The technology he/his company has created has been used by the university and has earned these awards.
-Intel’s top social innovation 2013.
-Selected to represent USA at Intel’s Global Challenge 2013.
-NASA and Space Frontier Foundation’s top 10 New Technology Companies for Space 2013.
-TEDMED 2013: featured startup.
-Dell’s Global Social Innovation Challenge 2013:  3rd place out of 1,800 teams & winner of the Audience Choice Award.
-National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance’s Venture Lab Grant Award Recipient 2013 and 2014.
-Colorado Apex technology challenge 2013- 2nd place.
-University of Colorado Bard Business Plan Competition 2013- 2nd place.
– Monaco Venture Association’s “the edge” tech conference Top 5 Global Social Innovation Companies.
-Duke University’s Start-Up Challenge 2012 1st place out of 118 companies & Grand Finale People’s Choice Live Voting Winner.
-Cornell University’s Venture Challenge 2012 3rd place out of 70 companies.

Initiated program on the Anschutz campus to bring in students from Aurora Hills Middle School to see the school of medicine campus, talked to other medical students, and perform dissections. The program’s intention is to inspire minority students from generally low-income backgrounds. The efforts are managed by first- and second-year medical students.

Outstanding Leader of a Student Organization
Lindsey Schaffer, Co-President
BRANCH (Bridging Research and Aurora Neighborhoods for Community Health (BRANCH)

She updated leadership-position fact sheets reflecting changes within BRANCH enabling new leaders to understand position expectations and how past roles have been fulfilled. She talked extensively with each person who took on a new position whether it was through email, over the phone or in person to facilitate knowledge building as well as identify their strengths and weaknesses. Took on a true mentorship role within her leadership of the organization making sure each member understood their role and purpose as well as the organization’s. Her leadership has encouraged the most interdisciplinary participation since the organization’s inception.

One of the original members of BRANCH and the first vice president of Community Gardens, Lindsey helped to establish and develop the first links with North Middle School, Aurora Public Schools, and Denver Urban Gardens that led to the establishment of Aurora’s first school-based community garden. This garden has led to a permanent link between North Middle School and the Anschutz medical campus.

Furthermore, her dedication has continued to make it one of the most interdisciplinary groups on campus.  Students from the Dentistry, Pharmacy, Public Health, Physical Therapy and Public Health all participate and serve in leadership roles within the organization.

Outstanding Community Service by a Student Organization

1) HANDDS (Identifying High Arrest Neighborhoods to Decrease Disparities in survival)

The HANDDS mission is to engage all students on the Anschutz Medical Campus in the communities of the Denver Metro Area in order to decrease the inequity of bystander provided CPR; increase awareness, knowledge, and understanding regarding the provision of hands-only CPR in the event of sudden cardiac arrest; and promote cardiovascular health and health-conscious lifestyles through ongoing community partnerships. They teach hands-only CPR at Health Fairs and community events as well as first-aid training. The group organized canned-food and coat drives to benefit Servicios de la Raza and are working on a project to design a sustainable CPR curriculum in Aurora and Denver public middles schools. The HANDDS program accepted over 50 volunteers and trained over 1250 individuals in hands-only CPR.

2) CUSNA (CU Student Nurses Association)
CUSNA sponsored and invited all students to attend two lecture series: Pathways Lecture Series and Career Resource Lectures. During the past year, attendance tripled due to a combination of increased outreach and improved communication to the student body from CUSNA.

CUSNA also is recognized for offering National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX) review sessions several times per semester. Coordination of multiple blood and platelet drives; decorating paper bags on behalf of Project Angel Heart; coordinating a household goods drive for the victims of the October 2013 flood (donated goods went to the Red Cross in Loveland, Colo.); collection of 219 pounds of canned food and 40 pounds of warm clothing for the Colfax Community Network Canned Food and Clothing Drive; participation in outreach efforts with the Aurora Community Outreach Team who sends medical personnel out on cold evenings to transport individuals to appropriate community agencies for services; and continued participation in Project C.U.R.E.

Outstanding Student Organization

This group supported the organizers of the Concerts and Donor Memorial Ceremony over the past year(s) helping to inspire, encourage, cheer, show thanks, and give hope to those who have contributed to the success of the University by singing and making music on campus

Office of University Communications

CU Anschutz
Building 500

13001 East 17th Place

Room CG009

Aurora, CO 80045