April 26, 2017

Inbox [April 26]: News and notes from Clark, UMass Medical, Anna Maria, Worcester Community Action Council, Research Bureau and Bravehearts

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Ora Szekely

Courtesy of Clark University

Ora Szekely, Clark University assistant professor of political science

Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

Clark prof’s latest book ‘Politics of Militant Group Survival in the Middle East’

The nature of international conflict has evolved in recent decades. Rather than conflict between state militaries, warfare increasingly takes place within regional conflict systems involving both states and non-state armed groups. Understanding the internal dynamics of these organizations is an important part of understanding the nature of international conflict, according to Ora Szekely, Clark University assistant professor of political science.

Szekely explores these dynamics within the context of the Arab-Israeli conflict in her latest book, “The Politics of Militant Group Survival in the Middle East: Resources, Relationships and Resistance.”

Szekely draws from field research conducted in Lebanon, Israel, the West Bank, Jordan, Syria and Egypt to compare the performances of four key non-state actors of the Arab-Israeli conflict ecosystem: The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Hamas, Amal, and Hizbullah. Her research reveals how strategic domestic and foreign policy choices affect certain groups’ ability to “militarily resist and politically recover from confrontations with far more powerful adversaries.”

“We tend to think of wars as being either traditional interstate wars, like WWII, or smaller, local civil wars,” Szekely said. “But today, most conflicts take place as part of complex conflict systems involving multiple states and armed militant groups. Yet, even within the same conflict system, different militant groups often demonstrate very different abilities to resist attacks by their enemies, and to recover politically afterward. Understanding the roots of those differences can help us understand the dynamics of these conflict systems more broadly.”

Listen to the podcast “The Politics of Militant Group Survival: A Conversation with Ora Szekely” from “The Project on Middle East Political Science”

Read the entire story on the Clark University website

Study: Antipsychotic medications can be reduced in dementia patients

The use of antipsychotic medication in nearly 100 Massachusetts nursing homes was significantly reduced when staff was trained to recognize challenging behaviors of cognitively impaired residents as communication of their unmet needs, according to a new study led by Jennifer Tjia, M.D., MSCE, associate professor of quantitative health sciences at UMass Medical School.

Wikimedia Commons/Photo by og-emmet

UMass Medical School

Results of the study were published in JAMA Internal Medicine on April 17.

“This is the largest study to show that it is possible to reduce antipsychotic use in the nursing home population,” Tjia said.

“This intervention focused on treating the residents as human beings with needs, not as patients with problems. We don’t medicate babies when they cry or act out, because we assume that they have a need that we need to address. However, when people with dementia are unable to communicate, the current approach medicates them when they have undesirable behaviors.”

The off-label prescription of antipsychotics for nursing home residents with dementia is common, despite numerous studies that have shown it increases risk of stroke and death and is only minimally effective in controlling behavioral symptoms of dementia.

Read the entire story on the UMass Medical School website

Anna Maria offers 15 new certificates

Anna Maria College has announced it has added 15 new certificates to continue to offer ways for professionals and aspiring professionals to enhance their credentials and add knowledge in a specific facet of their field, provide content and specialized knowledge.

“We are extremely excited to add 15 new certificates,” Anna Maria President Mary Lou Retelle said. “Our Graduate and Certificate programs provide the expanded training students and professionals need to succeed in their career, and the depth of knowledge they’re looking for as they continue their education.”

The certificates include: Homeland Security; Health Emergency Management; Ethics & Leadership; Healthcare Administration; Health Informatics; Criminal Justice Leadership and Administration; Finance; Forensic Accounting and Fraud Examination; Forensic Criminology; Industrial Organizational Psychology; Intimate Partner Violence Response and Prevention; Mental Illness; Crime, and Justice; Security Management; Sexual Violence and Trauma;  Victim Studies; and Self-Designed/General Track in Business.

Public Finance & Management, and Marketing will be offered in the fall semester.

WCAC receives $25K to support CNA pipeline program

The Worcester Community Action Council was awarded $25,000 to design training programs to prepare individuals for positions as Certified Nursing Assistants.

For this initiative WCAC has partnered with the Central MA Workforce Investment Board, WorkForce Central, Ascentria Care Alliance, Quinsigamond Community College, Worcester Community Connections Coalition/YOU, Inc., Christopher House, Veteran’s Inc., Salmon Health Care, the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Central Massachusetts Housing Alliance.

According to WCAC Executive Director Jill Dagilis: “Once they’ve completed the certification, an individual is then eligible to take the American Red Cross Certified Nursing Assistant exam and can be placed in employment by local nursing facilities, earning more than minimum wage and helping to fill the many vacant positions being reported by industry leaders.” She estimated that an additional sixty individuals will be served through these latest workforce grant funds.

Read the entire story on the Worcester Community Action Council website

Augustus to deliver State of City address

Worcester City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. will deliver a State of the City Address at 5 p.m. Wednesday, May 10, at Mechanics Hall.

Courtesy NAMI Mass

Edward M. Augustus Jr.

Augustus will present an overview of the city’s current projects, future initiatives, and overall fiscal and organizational health.

The address is at 5 p.m., an hors d’oeuvres reception and cash bar is at 6.

More information is available on the Worcester Regional Research Bureau website

WTAG to broadcast Bravehearts home games

WTAG will broadcast 20 regular-season weeknight and Saturday night Worcester Bravehearts home games this season. Bob Lobel, 30-year sports anchor veteran and contributor to SuiteSports.com, will provide play-by-play and host the broadcasts.

“We appreciate the 93-year history of WTAG and their commitment to local high school, college and professional sports. Bob Lobel and the Bravehearts will be a perfect match for the station,” Bravehearts General Manager Dave Peterson said.

“Airing Worcester Bravehearts games on WTAG is a no-brainer for the Worcester community,” said Tony Bristol, WTAG program director. “Hearing their hometown team’s home games on the radio builds a live and local pride for Worcester as fans get the opportunity to experience some of the best regional players battle to reach the big leagues.”

Read the entire story on the Worcester Bravehearts website

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