Loyola Stritch names new chair of neurosurgery

Christopher Loftus
 By Ana Córdova

Dr. Christopher Loftus has been named chair of the Department of Neurosurgery for Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. Internationally recognized for his research and treatment of cerebral aneurysms and strokes, his expertise is that of cerebral revascularization, cervical spine reconstruction, radiosurgery and the treatment of lumbar stenosis.

Loftus is expected to take his official position as chair in the neurosurgical department on August 1st of this year.

More information can be found on the following article published on Newswise:

Newswise — MAYWOOD, IL. — Dr. Christopher Loftus, a neurosurgeon who is internationally known for his research and treatment of cerebral aneurysms and stroke, has been named chair of the Department of Neurosurgery, Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. He will start on August 1.

With a career spanning more than three decades, Dr. Loftus comes to Loyola from his position as professor and chair of the Department of Neurosurgery, Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pa., where he has worked since 2004. Prior to that, he was chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City.

“Loyola’s neurosurgery program has always been on the leading edge in the treatment of cerebrovascular disease. Christopher Loftus’ extensive background as an internationally known researcher, a stellar educator and a devoted clinician makes him a great choice as chair of our Department of Neurosurgery,” said Dr. Richard L.Gamelli, Sr. vice president and provost, Health Sciences Division, Loyola University Chicago.

Dr. Loftus has special expertise in the circulatory system around the brain and the treatment of both benign and malignant brain tumors, brain aneurysms, vascular malformations and blockages of the carotid artery. He excels in cerebral revascularization, cervical spine reconstruction, radiosurgery and the treatment of lumbar stenosis.

Dr. Loftus graduated cum laude from Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH. He received his medical degree from SUNY, Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY, and completed his neurosurgery residency training at the Neurological Institute of New York, Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, New York, NY. He is board-certified in neurosurgery by the American Board of Neurological Surgery. In 2006 he received his Doctor Honoris Causa (Dr. h.c.) from Pavel Josef Safarik University, Kosice, Slovakia. He is a U.S. News & World Report Top Doctor, ranked in the top 1 percent of his specialty.

The diseases and conditions that block blood circulation in the brain have been the main focus of Dr. Loftus’ research. He is currently investigating modeling of intracranial collateral circulation; employing progesterone therapy for stroke prevention; and is participating in several clinical trials, including ISUIA, which is studying unruptured aneurysms, and he was a principal of the NIH funded IHAST cooperative trial for hypothermia in aneurysm surgery. He has written more than 600 research papers, books and/or book chapters, articles, reviews, abstracts and special presentations. Throughout his career, Dr. Loftus has collaborated with several physician researchers from Loyola’s Stritch School of Medicine.

As a lecturer, teacher and an agent of national and international exchange in the specialty of neurosurgery, Dr. Loftus is an accomplished leader. At Temple University School of Medicine, he served as Assistant Dean for International Affiliations. He is serving a four year-term as the Assistant Treasurer of the World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies. He has been a visiting professor at dozens of medical schools worldwide. Dr. Loftus has held numerous roles within the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, including vice president and chair of its International Outreach Committee. Dr. Loftus was the editor-in-chief of the journal, Techniques in Neurosurgery and has sat on the editorial boards for numerous neurosurgery journals around the world. He is a frequent guest lecturer at both national and international scientific meetings.

He and his wife, Sara J. Sirna, MD, a cardiologist, have three sons and a daughter.

Men try to lure children into van in Rogers Park

Chicago Police sketch

Chicago police have issued a community alert in West Rogers Park  after two men tried to lure four children into their van, according to the Sun-Times Media Wire.

Here is the rest of the Sun-Times article:

The children, aged 4 through 12, were walking to school about 8:30 a.m. on March 26 in the 2100 block of West Jarvis, the alert said. A white, older model van with tinted windows approached near the intersection of Ridge and Jarvis.

There were two men in the van and the driver told the kids to “Get in the car!” The offenders drove off south on Ridge when they spotted a Chicago Police car in the area. The children were not hurt.

The children kept walking and the van continued to follow south on Ridge, the alert said, and the other man in the car said, “Get in the car or I’m going to get you in!”

The driver was described as a heavy-set Hispanic man 30-40 with a medium complexion, black hair styled in a Mohawk and a braided goatee, wearing a black T-shirt. He had a Spanish accent but the passenger did not.

The other person in the van, also a Hispanic man 30-35, had a dark complexion and no facial hair. He wore a black hooded sweatshirt, had a diamond stud earring in his left ear and a teardrop tattoo under his left eye.

Police ask that if anyone has any information about this incident, to call the Area North detectives at (312)744-8200.

Loyola hosts forum on getting a job in government

By Rosallie Ruiz

Rachel Wright, training and development specialist with the General Services Administration, discussed her federal story and background, different myths about working for the government and various resources for job seekers  in her Wednesday presentation, “Careers in Public Service: Is a Government Career Right For You?”

Wright is a Loyola alumna and is representing The Partnership for Public Service to revitalize and promote government internships and employment.

The presentation was sponsored by Partnership for Public Services and Loyola Career Services Office and was attended by about 50 students, faculty and staff.

Benefits of government service includes student loan repayment assistance, flexible schedule and generous vacation packages, training and professional development, competitive health and retirement benefits and excellent advancement opportunities.

“Opportunities for advancement in government are really out there. It is fairly easy to progress within the system,”  Wright said. “The benefits of government service compared to private sectors are very good.”

For job seekers, the major resources to target agencies of interest include makingthedifference.org, usajobs.gov, studentjobs.gov and usa.gov.

“It may not be right for you. It’s not right for everybody, but it’s definitely worth to look at. It is very rewarding,” said Wright. “The take away for today is to include federal service as part of your job search.”

The presentation ended with a question and answer portion, and Wright was applauded as she closed her speech.

Some students were pleased with the information they took away from the presentation and inspired them to pursue the internship program.

“The overall presentation was interesting. I gained valuable information,” said Krina Patel, 21, a junior economics and international business major. “I plan on looking for a federal internship.”

However, some students were hoping for additional information on other government agencies besides General Services Administration.

“I thought the presentation offered a nice broad category of information, but could’ve gone into more detail,” said Taylor Dahlgreen, 20, a sophomore international studies and economics major. “I wish there were more information about internship opportunities and other government sectors other than GSA.”

Loyola says Kenmore Avenue might never reopen

By Lauren Ruckheim

This might sound like bad news to Loyola University Chicago students who face a longer commute to classes: Kenmore Avenue might never reopen.

But the good news is that if the university keeps Kenmore closed, there will be pedestrian walkways to shorten the stroll to campus.

“It [Kenmore] will become a south campus residential village. Like the rest of the campus there would not be cars except for emergencies. The south campus would be landscaped with grass, trees, flowers, benches, and pedestrian walkways,” said Jennifer Clark vice president of campus/community planning at Loyola.

Since 2004, Loyola University Chicago’s $500 million construction project has been a regular part of Loyola students’ daily routines. Only recently did the construction begin to affect students’ living situations with the closing of Kenmore Avenue.

The closing of Kenmore has forced students to walk through alleys in order to get to their dorms as well as put up with the constant noise of the construction.

“I can’t really study in my room during the day because of the loud noises that are constantly outside my window. Also, I end up getting woken up super early because of the loud noises and banging,” said Emily Bourdow, 20, a sophomore biology major.
In addition to the constant noise of the construction, many students wish they were given more notice as to the closing of Kenmore Avenue.

“I think the least they could have done was give us some notice that the street was going to be closed for the rest of the year because it is a big inconvenience. I had no idea what was going on until I read it in the Phoenix a week later. During midterms, many students have found that the construction has made them have to change their daily routines,” said Tessa Kuipers, 20, a sophomore psychology major.
The part that seems most difficult for students is that students have not received any accommodations or assistance from the school to help them adjust to the construction.

“I honestly think they could have left a small walking path. I think the closure of the entire street was Loyola trying to make a statement to the city so the university could close it for good in the future. Which would mean the students were not kept in the administration’s mind,” said Michael Conway, 20, a history and political science major.

Clark said the university has offered alternatives to the commute.

“There is a pedestrian path depicted on Loyola’s construction website. Additionally, we suspected that students would not take Winthrop and would instead shortcut through the alley we added additional lighting to the alleys for safety,” Clark said.

The administration at Loyola is hoping to close the North part of Kenmore Avenue permanently, Clark said.