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Director’s Album – Videos

My Virtual Greeting to X-STEM All Access Conference

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The USA Science & Engineering Festival just held its X-STEM All Access conference, though this year in a virtual format. It was my pleasure to videotape some brief remarks for the conference, and I offer them here to share the excitement and encourage young people to consider careers in the sciences. The opportunities that await in the biomedical sciences in particular are unprecedented, and there are lots of great jobs to be had. X-STEM All Access is an interactive online experience for kids. Through a series of daily livestream events, students will hear from an exclusive group of visionaries about careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. My videotaped remarks were shown on May 18, 2020.


Yes, Imagine

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During these tough times, music is a great convener and healer for everyone. I recently sat down at the piano to play this song, which is dedicated to my NIH family. The song is a variation on John Lennon’s classic tune, “Imagine,” with some new words from Carrie Wolinetz, NIH’s Associate Director for Science Policy. My wife Diane Baker is the videographer, her cell phone holding steady in our music room. When the COVID-19 outbreak is all over, the thing that we’ll remember the most is how everyone pulled together to make a difference in the world. That day will come. Yes, Imagine.


Wash Your Hands, People

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The World Health Organization (WHO) has launched the Safe Hands Challenge to demonstrate the many practical steps everyone can take to protect themselves and others from COVID-19. Dr. Jerome Adams, the Surgeon General of the United States, embraced the challenge. He reminded everyone that washing their hands for 20 seconds, while singing “Happy Birthday” twice, is more effective than a spritz of hand sanitizer. The Surgeon General also nominated four people, including me, to take up the challenge. I certainly welcome his challenge, and here’s my response to help others prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.


Letting Sleeping Dogs Lie

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I got to let several sleeping dogs lie during NIH’s “Puppycam” event, which was recently livestreamed on social media. In addition to interacting with these adorable Labrador retriever pups, which will be trained to help people with physical disabilities, including military veterans, the event was a great opportunity to discuss stress reduction, mindfulness, and pet therapy. It was also my pleasure to join in the conversation. Puppycam, held on February 13, 2020 at the NIH Clinical Center, was hosted by NIH and Hero Dogs, Silver Spring, MD.

Singing “If Not Now”

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What a thrill it was to perform the song, “If Not Now,” with my daughter Margaret Collins. We sang the duet at the conclusion of the Women in Nephrology’s annual Nancy Gary Memorial Luncheon Lecture. Margaret, a nephrologist, and I delivered this year’s lecture titled “Two Generations of Perspective on Women in Medicine.” This song’s message seemed so very appropriate to leave with these leaders and mentors in nephrology. We delivered the lecture on November 9. 2019 at the Walter Washington Convention Center, Washington, D.C., and I share the video to encourage others to take the words of this song “to the next level.” Credit: Diane Baker


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