Monday, July 25, 2011
Healthcare & Education Symposium
FOCUSING ON PONTIAC'S ASSETS DURING A TIME OF DEFICITS ~
L. Brooks Patterson kicks off second symposium focusing on rebuilding Pontiac ~ National attention on the City of Pontiac’s economic woes and a controversial Emergency Financial Manager have not dampened the spirits of a grassroots group of citizens who are emphasizing the assets that Pontiac still has to offer. On August 6th, 8am-1pm, a public forum will spotlight Pontiac area’s three hospitals, four colleges, and their symbiotic relationship to Oakland County as essential to Pontiac’s economic survival. The free event, being hosted by Oakland University, is the second in a series of symposia intended to find real solutions to the historical city’s problems.
L. Brooks Patterson, Oakland County Executive, will lead off the event. Patterson plans to divulge ways that Oakland County can support Pontiac with existing services, a viable plan of action other cities around the country have noted. It is expected that he will also discuss his new Medical Main Street program, which highlights the need for investing in healthcare for Oakland County’s future.
The lunchtime keynote speaker, Dr. Robert Noiva, will speak on the expected ripple effects of Oakland University-William Beaumont Medical School for the greater Pontiac region after it opens in 2012. Dr. Noiva is O.U’s Associate Dean for Medical Education and Associate Professor of Biomedical Science. Dr. Noiva will oversee all aspects of the medical student curriculum. His past efforts in educational outreach programs for K-12 students have been nationally-recognized. Prior to coming to Oakland University to help run the new medical school Noiva served as Director of Medical Biochemistry at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.
Panelists from Pontiac’s healthcare industry, higher education, and public school system will be taking questions from the audience throughout the half-day program. Healthcare panelists will include the CEO’s of two of Pontiac’s hospitals, David Sessions from Doctors’ Hospital of Michigan, and Clarence Sevillian, POH Regional Medical Center’s CEO, and a representative from St. Joseph Mercy-Oakland. Representatives from Baker College, Oakland Community College and Oakland University will takes questions as part of the panel of experts on higher education. During the Pontiac Public Education panel, Interim Superintendent, Jon Brown, will take questions along with high school students who take part in Rochester Colleges dual enrollment program.
The first forum under the theme “Building Pontiac through Public, Private & Citizen Partnerships,” was held in June and featured Mayor Jay Williams of Youngstown, OH, who spoke on his highly-touted urban renewal programs. Shortly after presenting in Pontiac, Williams was appointed to head up President Barrack Obama’s Office of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers. “We know that Mayor Williams took a tour through Pontiac before he drove back to Ohio; we are hopeful that in his new role with the Obama administration he will vouch for Pontiac’s initiative in finding creative solutions to its financial problems,” stated Hubert Price, one of the planners of the symposia series and the Chairman of Pontiac’s Sesquicentennial Commission. The 2nd Symposium, “Health, Education, and Oakland County: Capitalizing on Pontiac’s Assets,” will take place August 6, 8am-1pm, at Oakland University’s Student Center. A continental breakfast and lunch will be served.
There is no charge for the symposium and it is open to the public, but seating is limited so pre-registration is recommended by calling (248) 857-7525 or emailing to Pontiacsymposia@gmail.com