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Answering your questions on awards for outstanding laboratorians.

Awards for outstanding laboratorians

Q Does the panel know of any national awards given out either to individual laboratorians or to clinical labs in general? If so, who would be eligible for such awards, how can I enter or make nominations, and what prizes - monetary or otherwise are available?

A Most of the professional organizations of which Linda Blacklidge is aware offer several awards that seek to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to their profession or to their professional organization. In addition, she says the Clinical Laboratory Management Association offers a clinical lab facility award to the organization that best epitomizes the agency's ideal of a quality operation.

Blacklidge notes the American' Society of Clinical Pathologists awards three annual national awards: the Associate Member Lifetime Achievement Award, the Excellence in Education Award, and the Excellence in Management Award. Candidates must be ASCP members to be eligible for these awards.

The Lifetime Achievement Award assumes that candidates have pursued a career in some aspect of laboratory medicine (such as operations, research, management/supervision, or education) and that they have demonstrated long-term commitment to the advancement of the profession as well as to the society's activities. Candidates also are required to have served in several leadership roles that support the ASCP-ASM mission, served as role models, and participated in activities that benefited the community at large.

The Excellence in Education Award requires candidates to prove active participation in an educational program as well as demonstrate outstanding teaching abilities through teaching methods or the development of testing materials. Again, candidates for this award should have served as role models and have the education of their students as their highest priority.

The Excellence in Management Award requires that candidates are or have been actively involved in laboratory management/supervision. They must demonstrate leadership skills in personnel, finance, and/or operations. They also must prove that they have contributed to laboratory quality improvement, inspiration, or mentorship to a colleague and that they have shared these qualities through voluntary professional support of the society's activities.

All winners of the above mentioned awards receive a plaque containing an award certificate plus a paid trip to the fall annual meeting, where they receive their award.

Further, the ASCP provides a local award for each of its regions, Blacklidge says. This award is provided to ASCP-ASM members working in some aspect of laboratory operations who have made significant local contributions to ASCP activities. A nomination form for this award is available through the ASCP. The winner receives a plaque and a letter from the ASM Chair.

Some CLMA chapters also provide local recognition for professional contributions through a Chapter Member of the Year Award. Candidates must be a member of CLMA to be eligible and are required to have made significant contributions to the local chapter by way of service or leadership. This award includes a recognition plaque and art all-expenses-paid trip to the CLMA annual convention the following year. On a national level, Blacklidge adds, CLMA offers the Sterling Silver Award (a lifetime service award), which has eligibility requirements similar to the ASCP awards, with educational seminars and recognition plaques as prizes. Additionally, CLMA provides scholarship awards to professionals who are continuing their education.

According to Marti Bailey, the American Society of Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics offers the ASHI Outstanding Technologist Award (OTA). Only ASHI members are eligible, and nominees must work in the field of histocompatibility testing.

The 1997 winner received not only the ASHI award but also $1,000 in prize money donated by Pel Freez Clinical Systems. This agency also offers Robbins Scientific ASHI travel awards, which provide technologists with prize money of up to $1,000 for travel, lodging, and other expenses associated with attending annual ASHI meetings. Over the past 7 years, 39 technologists have been awarded.

Finally, Bailey notes that the American Association of Clinical Chemists offers numerous awards for medical laboratory technologists, including cash prizes of up to $5,000.

For more information, contact the following organizations:

ASCP, 2100 W. Harrison Street, Chicago, IL 60612-3798; (312) 7381336 (ask for Educational Programs), fax: (312) 738-5807, Web site:

CLMA, 989 Old Eagle School Road, Suite 815, Wayne, PA 19087; (610) 995-9580, fax: (610) 995-9568, Web site:

AACC, 2101 L Street NW, Suite 202, Washington, D.C., 20037-1526; (202) 857-0717, fax (202) 887-5093, e-mail:

ASHI, PO Box 15804, Lenexa, KS 66285-5804; (913) 541-0009, fax (913) 541-0156 Web site:
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Publication:Medical Laboratory Observer
Date:Jun 1, 1998
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