The Diagnostic Medical Ultrasound program received several awards at the Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (SDMS) annual conference in September.

Most notably, Sharlette Anderson, Clinical Coordinator and Clinical Associate Professor, received the Distinguished Educator Award. This award is given annually to an educator who is nominated by their peers for their dedication to teaching, innovation in education, and ongoing support of students through mentorship, research, and volunteerism.

“The SDMS Distinguished Educator Award is the one award that I’ve coveted for years,” Anderson said. “There are so many aspects of my job that I love; it’s hard to pick a favorite. I really love watching students come back to campus in the fall of their second or senior year in the program and seeing the huge increase in their self-confidence after spending the summer immersed in their first major clinical rotations.”

Anderson has been a clinical instructor here at Mizzou since 2007, but she began teaching sonography in 2003. Her passion for not just sonography, but also being an excellent educator is clear when you speak with her.

“We are not photographers,” Anderson said.  “Taking “pretty pictures” is only a small component of what we do.  As an educator, I am obligated to ignite that same ownership and passion in my students so that they will also become competent, excellent sonographers who routinely have a positive impact on patient outcomes by gathering accurate, complete diagnostic information.”

Beyond Anderson’s notable teaching award, several DMU students presented research presentations and summaries at the conference with much success.

DMU students Laura Huddleston, Bailey McMillen, and Kirsten Vigor received 1st Place in the Student Poster category for their poster entitled: Do You Have the Guts? A Comparative Study of the Sonographic Appearance of the Thickness of the Intestinal Wall between Healthy Patients and Those with Celiac Disease.

Madeline Scott won 1st place for her original research, titled: The Pathways to Diagnosis: The Impact of Sonography on Breast Cancer Diagnosis in Women with Dense Breast Tissue

And Douglas Clem, Emily Rail, Elise Hodel, and Amanda Matlock won first place in the Scientific Presentation Competition for their work titled: An Exploratory Survey Examining the Criteria Used for the Evaluation of Carotid Stenosis and the Reporting of Results by Ultrasound Labs

“I enjoy watching our students present their research at the SDMS competitions and the way they represent Mizzou at the conference,” Anderson said. “Every year, I receive complements from leaders in our profession about the professionalism displayed by our students. The way they interact with seasoned sonography professionals demonstrates a level of maturity and professionalism that makes them stand out among hundreds of students from all over the U.S.”