Jan. 22, 2015 | Eighteen University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) employees in research-related fields received Certified Research Specialist (CRS) certificates at a Jan. 16 ceremony.

Laura James, M.D., director of the UAMS Translational Research Institute, who spoke during the ceremony, praised the recipients for their dedication to excellence in research. After taking over leadership of the Translational Research Institute in February 2014, James said she became more familiar with their work.

“I have experienced firsthand your expertise and your dedication to ensuring that UAMS produces quality research,” James said. “The fact that you put in the extra effort to earn the CRS certification exemplifies your commitment to research excellence.”

The certification program, administered by the UAMS Office of Research Compliance, ensures an understanding of, and respect for, the principles of research integrity and the protection of those who participate in research. Although the certification is not required by all departments, UAMS research employees routinely complete the 26 hours of coursework and the comprehensive CRS proficiency exam.

The 2014 recipients are:

• Syed Abid, Institute on Aging
• Amy Ballard, Translational Research Institute
• Keith Bracy, College of Medicine—Psychiatry
• Rita Brown, College of Medicine—Pediatrics
• Gina Calhoun, Quality Improvement
• Jean Chen, Institutional Studies
• Hannah Coleman, Pathology
• Judith Cooper, Myeloma Institute
• Kenya Eddings, College of Public Health
• Jaclyn Fite, Myeloma Institute
• Sara Jones, College of Nursing
• Jacqueline Jung, Information Technology – EMR Services
• Priscilla Newman, Myeloma Institute
• Pallavi Ramu, College of Medicine—Pediatrics
• Nicole Robertson, Myeloma Institute
• Monica Smith, Myeloma Institute
• Topeka Stacey, UAMS IT (former employee)
• Samina Waheed, Myeloma Institute

In addition, 84 UAMS employees were acknowledged for maintaining their certification, which requires that they remain current on Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) Human Subject Protection training and complete six hours of continuing education each calendar year.