University of Rochester

Rochester Review
September–October 2010
Vol. 73, No. 1

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‘EVER BETTER’ Celebrating Meliora Weekend The 2010 edition of the weekend anchors reunions and celebrations across the University, October 14–17.By Kathleen McGarvey
melioraKEYNOTE SPEAKER: Neurosurgeon and CNN medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta says that stories about health and medicine cover concerns “we all share.” (Photo: Jeff Hutchens/Courtesy of Turner Broadcasting System)

“Medical information is plentiful—but medical knowledge is different,” says neurosurgeon Sanjay Gupta. “It’s information that is contextualized, credible, and memorable.”

As the chief medical correspondent for health and medicine at CNN, Gupta is responsible for conveying such knowledge. “Medical and health stories are something we all share in common,” he says. But to help other people understand an issue, he has to be sure that he fully grasps its complexities first.

Signature Events: Fall Celebrations 2010

This fall’s Meliora and Eastman Weekends feature several signature events. A few highlights:

  • Keynote address on media and medicine by neurosurgeon and CNN correspondent Sanjay Gupta
  • Presidential Symposium on the Future of Health Care
  • Invitation-only evening with David Sedaris for George Eastman Circle members
  • Medical Center CEO Bradford Berk ’79M (MD), ’81M (PhD) discussing compassionate care
  • Performances by comedian, actor, and writer Jim Gaffigan
  • Appearances by jazz legend Ron Carter ’59E at Eastman Weekend

“Whenever there’s something I want to explain to people, it’s imperative to me to understand it myself. Only then can I really teach it.”

Gupta will be sharing some of his understanding of medicine and media this fall as keynote speaker at Meliora Weekend. He’ll also participate in this year’s presidential symposium on the future of health care.

This year marks the first time that all of the University’s schools will celebrate reunions on the same weekend.

“The inspired organizers of the University’s 150th anniversary created a unique event that brought together the entire Rochester family—alumni, parents, students, faculty, and guests. This event became the annual celebration we now know as Meliora Weekend,” says Jim Thompson, senior vice president and chief advancement officer. “This year is particularly special in that it unites all components of the University for the first time—celebrating Arts, Sciences, and Engineering, School of Medicine and Dentistry, School of Nursing, Simon, Warner, and via Eastman Weekend, Eastman. We are truly trying to live our motto and make it ‘ever better.’”

Among other highlights of the events are appearances by jazz legend Ron Carter ’59E and tours of the new Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre as part of Eastman Weekend, and an invitation-only evening with author David Sedaris for members of the George Eastman Circle. Student performances, family activities, the homecoming game, and other activities also fill the weekend.

Gupta, who will speak on Saturday morning, says he honed his ability to talk about medicine in accessible terms when he worked in the White House, writing speeches about health care for President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton.

As a correspondent, Gupta says he pictures himself in his medical office: “I imagine the audience as a patient or a family.”

For more about the weekend, visit the Meliora Weekend site.