Career Development Committee Symposium

"Journeys Through a Career in Anatomy - Glancing Back and Looking Forward" 
Tuesday, July 18th
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

During this symposium, we will have three speakers representing three different levels in an academic career.  Dr. Lela Giannaris is an assistant professor at University of Massachusetts Medical School, Dr. Jonathan Wisco is an associate professor at Brigham Young University, and Dr. Robert Spinner is a full professor at the Mayo Clinic.  Topics to be discussed include (1) developing as an educator, (2) establishing scholarly activity, (3) balancing a career and personal life, (4) lessons learned, and (5) path to academic promotion. 

Eustathia Lela Giannaris, PhD

Lela Giannaris, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Translational Anatomy in the Department of Radiology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS). She joined the UMMS faculty in 2010 after earning a PhD in Anatomy and Neurobiology from Boston University School of Medicine. Dr. Giannaris serves as a core anatomy faculty member in the Development, Structure and Function (DSF) and Brain: Clinical Neuroanatomy courses for first and second year medical students, respectively. Dr. Giannaris is also the Director of the Summer Anatomy Enrichment Program for rising second-year medical students who are interested in further study of anatomy, preparation of cadaveric prosections, and development of educational materials. In addition, Dr. Giannaris is a Co-Course Leader of the Capstone Scholarship and Discovery course, a longitudinal course that engages students in a scholarly project related to medicine during all four years of medical school. Dr. Giannaris has conducted neuroscience research on various topics such as gene therapy for neurodegenerative diseases and quantitative neuroanatomy in aging, and has recently shifted to medical education research. She is interested in curriculum development related to the use of 3D visualization methods and the development of self-directed learning resources to enhance the gross anatomy and neuroanatomy curricula. Dr. Giannaris serves on the Educational Affairs Committee of the AACA.


Jonathan J. Wisco

Dr. Jonathan J. Wisco is Associate Professor and Director of the Laboratory for Translational Anatomy of Degenerative Disease and Developmental Disorders, College of Life Sciences, Department of Physiology and Developmental Biology, and Neuroscience Center at Brigham Young University, Provo, UT.  He is also Associate Director of the BYU MRI Research Facility.  Dr. Wisco holds an Adjunct Associate Professor position in the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, UT.

Dr. Wisco’s research encompasses three primary themes: 1) improving diagnostic and prognostic technologies for Alzheimer’s disease, cerebrovascular disease, autism and schizophrenia; 2) understanding the anatomical etiology for dysphonia disorders and synovial joint injuries; 3) examining the impact and role of service-learning through Anatomy Academy on the development of life-long learning skills at the undergraduate pre-professional, and graduate professional education levels. Dr. Wisco is currently the primary mentor for nearly 30 undergraduate students and four graduate students, and supervises the training of 80 teaching assistants for the BYU Human Anatomy course.

Dr. Wisco earned his B.S. in Biology at the University of Washington, Seattle, WA in 2004, and Ph.D. in Anatomy and Neurobiology from the Boston University School of Medicine in 2003.  He completed postdoctoral work in Radiology at the Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging and Massachusetts General Hospital, Cambridge, MA in 2006.  He was an Assistant and an Associate Professor of Integrative Anatomy at the David Geffen School of Medicine, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) until 2012.



Robert J. Spinner, MD, is chair of the Department of Neurologic Surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.  He is the Burton M. Onofrio, MD Professor of Neurologic Surgery and a Professor of Orthopedics and Anatomy.  He is chair of the Academic Appointments and Promotions Committee at Mayo. He is board certified in both orthopedics and neurosurgery.  His clinical practice is limited to peripheral nerve surgery. He completed full residency programs in orthopedics (Duke University) and neurosurgery (Mayo Clinic) and a 1 year peripheral nerve fellowship with David Kline and a 6 month traveling fellowship to several international centers as a CNS Cushing Fellow. He just served as the President of the American Society for Peripheral Nerve.