uh booster

University of Houston gets $1 million boost from Medical Center powerhouse

The new grant will create a professorship aimed at innovative research. Photo courtesy of University of Houston

Medical research at the University of Houston’s new College of Medicine has received a seven-figure boost from a local powerhouse. Houston Methodist has announced a $1 million gift for an endowed professorship at the University of Houston.

This new Houston Methodist Professorship of Medical Education will have a joint appointment in UH’s College of Education and College of Medicine, and an adjunct appointment at the Houston Methodist Academic Institute (HMAI), according to a press release. Houston Methodist’s Academic Institute boasts some of the world’s preeminent physician-scientists who are working to transition discoveries in the lab into patient treatments.

The scientist hired for this new endowed post will be expected to have a proven track record of impactful research and achievements recognized by membership in the National Academy of Science, National Academy of Medicine, or another national academy related to the field of study, according to UH.

Houston Methodist’s gift will be matched one-to-one to create a $2 million endowment as part of the UH’s “$100 Million Challenge” for chairs and professorships. This matching grant program is funded by an anonymous donor and is aimed at solving complex global issues including healthcare innovation.

“We are committed to building a faculty which will engage students in determining real-world solutions for today’s most prevalent health challenges,” said Paula Myrick Short, UH senior vice president for academic affairs and provost, in a statement. “Thanks to Houston Methodist, we will hire an accomplished medical educator to help facilitate the evolving link between the two institutions for the purpose of designing, directing and overseeing projects that improve the teaching expertise at both.”

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This article originally ran on CultureMap.

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Building Houston

 
 

After working with thousands of interns, Allie Danziger of Ampersand Professionals says she's now got a product to upskill and train new hires for employers. Photo courtesy of Ampersand

After seeing success with her internship training and matchmaking platform, Allie Danziger, founder and CEO of Ampersand Professionals, has expanded the concept to include a new hire training service that allows employers to better optimize the onboarding process and have a well-trained new staff member from day one.

In just over a year, Ampersand has worked with over 7,000 professionals through its original concept of upskilling and matching young professionals to internship programs. A few months ago, Danziger and her team expanded to include career development training for students first entering the workforce with the City of Houston's Hire Houston Youth program. Danziger says it was developing out the platform for this program that proved there was a need for this type of training.

"While we have focused on matching professionals with businesses for paid internships, we recognized a further gap with employers that have their own recruiting/talent acquisition teams, or just their own preferred way of bringing on entry-level talent, and didn’t have a need for our matching platform," Danziger tells InnovationMap. "But, they recognized the benefit of our proven training platform that pre-vets and de-risks their hires, and still wanted access to the training for their own hires."

The new program has evolved from training interns to new hires, so parts of the program that focuses on interviewing or applying for a job have been removed. Instead, the 8.5 hours of training focuses on networking, best practices for working with a manager and team, performance reviews, common software training, and more.

Danziger says usually new hires need the most experienced mentor or manager, but they don't usually get that support — especially when it comes to businesses that don't have their own built-out mentorship or training program.

"Ampersand’s new training product fills that gap — it gives employers of any size any easy solution to provide basic job readiness training to employees, access to our team of dedicated coaches, and a detailed report at the end of their training summarizing how their new hire did in the training and any trends recognized and tips for managing this employee based on what the platform uncovered," she says. "Businesses can also sign up for additional coaching sessions and customize training materials, as an add-on if interested."

The program costs the employer $100 per new employee, and checkout online takes less than a minute. Through both this program and the original internship program, Ampersand is constantly evolving its training content.

"These professionals are going through the same training experience that we have proven out over the last year, and we are constantly adding to based on data we see in the user experience," Danziger says.

Danziger recently joined the Houston Innovators Podcast discuss some of the benchmarks she's met with Ampersand, as well as the importance of investing in Gen Z hires. Listen to that episode below.


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