Integrated Science Program

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Integrated Science Program Faculty Profiles

Accelerated College Science Program

Samir Ayad MD, joined the Southern California University of Health Sciences (SCUHS) Los Angeles College of Chiropractic (LACC) faculty in 1996. He is both the lecture instructor for Anatomy and Physiology with the Integrated Science Program (ISP).

He holds concurrent responsibilities at LACC and School of Professional Studies (SPS).

At LACC, Dr. Ayad is an Assistant Professor and lead Instructor for Community Health, General and Neuromusculoskeletal Pathology and Clinical Microbiology Lab. He also teaches labs for General Anatomy, Functional Anatomy and Biomechanics, Neuroscience, Systemic Physiology, General and Systemic Histology.

Prior to joining SCUHS-LACC, Dr. Ayad was a medical instructor at Allied Health Careers in New Jersey. He is an avid researcher, always seeking new technologies and tools to achieve teaching excellence. In 2008, he was invited to act as a member of the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners.

Dr. Ayad obtained his MD degree from College of Medicine, Alexandria University, Egypt. He was a resident and chief resident in Pediatrics at El-Anfoushy Pediatric Hospital in Alexandria and general practitioner at Mother and Child Care Center.

Dr. Ayad has published in The Journal of Chiropractic Education and presented White Papers at the Association of Chiropractic Colleges (ACC)-The Research Agenda Conference (RAC) annual meetings.

Dr. Ayad is a member of the American Public Health Association and the Association of Physicians and Surgeons in Egypt.

Antoinette Debnam, M.S., C.L.S. (ASCP), is an ISP laboratory instructor in microbiology. She is a graduate of Tuskegee University with a B.S in Animal Science and a M.S. from University of Georgia, Athens in Medical Microbiology. Antoinette has an extensive background in research. Her research experience ranges from vaccine trials for the United States Department of Agriculture to her published graduate work in novel methods for bacterial identification and antimicrobial resistance. Antoinette returned back to school at California University, Dominguez Hills to obtain her Clinical Laboratory Scientist License (American Society of Clinical Pathology). As a C.L.S., she has been employed by some of the top hospitals in Los Angeles, working in the fields of microbiology, urinalysis, coagulation, and hematology. Antoinette’s vivacious personality and clinical experience is why she enjoys teaching and wishes to help make microbiology fun and relevant to the students.

Elano Galvez graduated from Far Eastern University (The Philippines) with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. In addition to gaining his degree, Mr. Gavlez took the initiative to further his knowledge in his chosen field, by attending graduate courses in chemistry at the University of Santo Tomas (The Philippines). His teaching career began as a chemistry instructor first at the University of the East (The Philippines), followed by a time at Colegio de San Juan de Letran (The Philippines).

Mr. Galvez chose to leave the teaching profession for a time in order to gain valuable experience in the petroleum industry. He was able to achieve this goal while working as a research chemist for Saudi Arabian American Oil Company, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Also, during his time in the Middle East, he was employed as a chemistry staff at Sultan Qaboos University (Sultanate of Oman) from 1986 to 1996.

Currently, Mr. Galvez is employed as a Senior Chemist for the California Department Public Health (Los Angeles, California). His foremost passion has always been to be an educator. He seeks to provide his students with a solid foundation in chemistry, so that they may use this knowledge to achieve whatever goals they so desire. He is currently able to accomplish this goal while working as an Instructional Assistant in the Chemistry Department of Los Angeles Community College (Culver City, California) and as a general chemistry lab instructor at the Integrated Science Program (ISP).

Bachir Hadid, MS, has a bachelor’s degree in Molecular Cell Biology with an emphasis in Neurobiology from University of California Berkeley, and a Master’s degree in Biological Sciences from Dominican University of California. As a George Miller Scholarship recipient at UC Berkeley, he conducted research on Alzheimer’s disease, under the supervision of Dr Randy Schekman, a 2013 Nobel Prize winner in Physiology or medicine, using the RNA interference approach, in order to gain better insight into the molecular mechanism of elevated beta-amyloid protein level in Alzheimer’s disease, by using dominant negative mutation of VPS4A, and VPS4B. In addition, Bachir earned an award for Outstanding Research in Neurogenesis and Neuroprotection in Huntington’s Disease from Dominican University of California.

He has extensive laboratory and research experience in Molecular Cell Biology and Neuroscience. At Buck Institute for Research on Aging, he led and designed 4 different research projects on Neurogenesis, and Neuroprotection in Huntington’s Disease, in which he performed sub-cloning, surgeries, dissections, behavioral tests, as well as mastered other Advanced Molecular Cell Biology Techniques. He has a passion for teaching and has taught various science courses to University and Community College students including Biology, Physiology, Molecular Cell Biology, Neurobiology, and Biochemistry. Bachir is also a polyglot, speaking 4 languages fluently. He is currently a Laboratory Instructor for Human Anatomy and Physiology Courses.

Anton Hawatmeh MD, graduated from the Aristotle’s University of Thessaloniki (the oldest medical university in the world,) in Greece with high honors as a medical doctor. He was a resident in internal medicine and general surgery at AXEPA (Aristotle’s National Hospital of Thessaloniki, Greece). He was also a two year resident in psychiatry and neurophysiology in Athens, Greece. After pursuing his medical degree, he returned to his native Jordan as a doctor and lecturer at the National Hospital of Zarka, Jordan.

Since he came to the United States, Dr. Hawatmeh has received the E.C.F.M.G. (Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates) Certificate, FLEX (Federation License Exam of California) Certificate, a recognition award from Galaxy Medical College, as well as many other recognition awards from known hospitals in Southern California. Dr. Hawatmeh is fluent in three languages (English, Arabic and Greek), as well as a member of the American Medical Association and Los Angeles Medical Association. He is also a voracious reader of medical textbooks as well as an active follower of modern day medical technologies and advancements. He has years of experience in teaching and lecturing high school students, medical students, MCAT students, as well as pharmacy and medical assistants. Dr. Hawatmeh is also a very active participant in different hospital programs and clinics, learning and teaching up-to-date medical subjects, as well as being a firm believer in the philosophy that knowledge and education should be passed to the generations to come to the fullest extent.

Dr. Hawatmeh currently teaches Anatomy and Physiology in the Integrated Science Program at SCUHS (Southern California University of Health Sciences)

Omar Khalid Ph.D., is currently a general biology lecturer for ISP. His emphasis during his doctorate was molecular biology and cancer research. Dr. Khalid has published his work in several peer-reviewed scientific journals. Outside of being a research scientist he thoroughly enjoys teaching. He believes in a dynamic classroom environment where students and teachers interact to achieve a common goal, learning science. He believes that each individuals perspective is truly unique and in that perspective we can gain new insight in the concepts that are being taught. Outside of teaching and research Dr. Khalid enjoys running, music, and going to the movies.

Dr. Elijah Levy, teaches the ISP’s general and developmental psychology coursework. He earned his doctorate in Clinical Psychology in 1987 and the bulk of his clinical experience is treating the persistent, mentally ill in residential care and inpatient settings. He has been a Clinical Director for inpatient, psychiatric facilities in addition to currently being the director of Founders Outreach, a nonprofit center providing psychosocial and psychiatric rehabilitation services to 90 residents at Founders House of Hope in Artesia, CA Dr. Levy also manages the supportive employment program at Founders House of Hope, a residential care program for individuals with Schizophrenia, Bipolar Illness and co-occurring illnesses. He has been employed at Founders House of Hope for 15 years providing psychiatric rehabilitation services to the residents. Dr. Levy’s consulting services include designing psychosocial rehabilitation programs and training mental health staff to implement skills based groups designed to restore optimal levels of functioning to the mentally ill.

Dr. Levy has also been teaching as an Adjunct at University of Redlands in the undergraduate and graduate school of business for the last 21 years. He teaches in the MBA, Masters of Arts in Management program and in the undergraduate business administration program. He has taught at California State University Long Beach and currently teaches at Cerritos College in the Older Adult and Diversity Program. Dr. Levy has received excellence in teaching awards from universities, in addition to being recognized for his volunteer services. At the Orange County University of Redlands campus, he also serves as the Liaison for the Associate Dean of the School of Business. Dr. Levy has published two books and produced a documentary on mental illness titled Beyond the Shadow of Mental Illness with a filmmaker colleague.

David H. Nguyen, Ph.D., is a tumor biologist specializing in why puberty is a window of susceptibility for breast cancer in women. His research predicts biological mechanisms of why childhood trauma increases a person’s risk of developing cancer during adulthood. He is author of the graduate textbook “Systems Biology of Tumor Physiology” (Springer Science+Business Media, 2015). David lectures for biochemistry, general biology, and anatomy & physiology at ISP. He loves helping students understand the thrill of bioscience, especially those who seek careers in a medical-related field.

David obtained his doctorate from UC Berkeley and did post-doctoral research jointly between Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and New York University. He has published extensively in the fields of breast cancer, including studies on low-dose ionizing radiation, and mammary biology.

Donna Sir Ph.D., is currently a chemistry for health professionals and microbiology lecturer for ISP. She holds a doctorate in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Southern California and a bachelor in Biological Sciences from the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Sir has a strong research experience in molecular biology and virology. She has published her works in several scientific journals and has written review articles and book chapters. In addition, Dr Sir has a strong passion as an educator. Her goal is to not only provide her students with a strong foundation in microbiology but also make microbiology interesting and relatable to their lives.

Jeré Annette Wilson MS, is an ISP laboratory instructor in microbiology and human biology. She is a graduate of California State Polytechnic University with a B.S in Biology and a M.S from California State, Los Angeles in Biology, with an emphasis in microbiology. Jeré has a strong laboratory research background in molecular and microbiology. She also has research experience in immunology at University California, Irvine where she studied herpes simplex virus (HSVI and HSVII) and is currently researching bacterial essential genes as targets for multi-drug resistant pathogens at Cal State University Los Angeles (CSULA). Jeré has tutored chemistry courses at the college level. She is very passionate about teaching and wishes to have a positive impact on her student’s lives. Jeré plans to pursue her MPH and DrPH in public health.

Jason Wiedenmann MS, has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Park College and a master’s degree in atmospheric sciences from the University of Missouri-Columbia, with an emphasis in global climatology and interannual variability. He is continuing his graduate studies in environmental engineering in the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California. His interests are alternative and renewable energy sources.

Jason has over six years experience teaching at the college level having served as a physics and organic chemistry instructor before coming to the ISP, where he is the physics instructor.