Ethan Park


Running Doc Makes Rapid Recovery, Hopes to Return to Running in 2015



On March 28, 2013, Dr. Ted Houk was commuting to work, as usual, with a morning run.  For years, the Lutherville doctor had become a familiar face to commuters on Charles Street as he jogged past traffic in black bicycle shorts, briefcase in hand, with a long braid down his back. But that March morning nearly six months ago, he was jogging down Charles Street when he was hit on the right leg by the bumper of a car, cracked the car’s windshield, and was immediately flown to Maryland Shock Trauma.  The accident left him with numerous fractures in his right leg, two fractures in his right collarbone, four cuts around the left knee, and a chip fracture in his left hip.

Dr. Houk before the accident.
Dr. Houk before the accident.

Since the accident, Dr. Houk, an internist who practiced independently, has endured surgeries, therapy and more. After months of tender care from his wife – and office manager – Pamela Jenkins, he’s been making a wonderfully rapid recovery.  He will return to practicing medicine in January 2014, and hopes to be up and running by 2015.

Gilman Bids Farewell to Headmaster John Schmick



On June 30, after nearly forty years of service as a teacher, coach and mentor, Headmaster John Schmick will retire from Gilman School.  Known for his humility, the creation of the Gilman Five, and dedication to the school, Schmick has been a keystone of the Gilman community throughout the past few decades.

“Gilman is a key element of my life,” says Schmick, who graduated from the North Baltimore all-boys private school in 1967 and returned to teach after both serving in the National Guard and graduating from the University of Pennsylvania.

During his teaching career, Schmick, whose favorite books include “Hamlet” and “To Kill a Mockingbird,” taught English and poetry.  He also became known for “Roger the Elf,” a fictitious, yet profound character who would lyrically dismiss the school for winter break with a poem using the names of every student in the senior class.  According to Schmick, the highlight of his career has been “having students, initially, learn to appreciate all forms of English literature.”

Are Human Genes Patentable? Student Recounts Arguments



Baltimore Fishbowl student intern Ethan Park had the privilege last week to hear attorneys argue the case over gene patents before the United States Supreme Court.

Recently, in the landmark case AMP v. Myriad Genetics, the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court have endeavored to resolve the question: Are human genes patentable?

Last year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled that Myriad Genetics’ patents directed to the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, whose variants are associated with an increased risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, are patentable subject matter.

The Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) appealed to the Supreme Court, oral arguments were made just over a week ago before a packed courtroom, and a verdict is expected in June or July.

Patents expire 20 years from the filing date, and patent protection for the BRCA genes has given Myriad a monopoly over BRCA testing procedures, which brings in millions of dollars annually for the company.  Myriad also has the right to deny competitors or individuals from further researching or producing the genes without their consent.

Gilman Hosts Area Student Film Festival: Submissions Impress


Gilman film festivalTwo weekends ago, students and parents from around the region gathered in Gilman School’s Alumni Auditorium for its Third Annual Daniel A. Citron Film Festival.The first and second festivals were envisioned and organized by Citron, a former Gilman student and filmmaker who now attends Harvard.  This year, the torch was passed to Festival Director John Chirikjian, a Gilman senior, who remarked that he was extremely impressed by the overall quality of the submissions, which were solicited from high school students around the city. Chirikjian lauded the efforts of students from other schools, not just Gilman, explaining that “it’s been a very Gilman-centric event in the past, but the wide variety of films that we received from such a wide range of schools helped bring a new perspective to the festival.”

Student-run with faculty advisors/judges, the festival received 44 submissions from K-12 students at area schools, including Bryn Mawr, Carver Vocational-Technical High, Friends, Gilman, Loyola, and Park.  The event screened more than 30 films over three hours to an audience of nearly 350.  Prizes ranged from an iPad Mini to $50 cash for categories such as Best Film (Grand Jury Prize) and Best Original Screenplay. (See clips of some of the prize-winning films below.)

Wise Words of the General: Stanley McChrystal Opens Hopkins Foreign Affairs Symposium



A strong presence, a charismatic tone, and some forward thinking:  all phrases to describe the atmosphere at Johns Hopkins University Wednesday night, where Retired U.S. Army General Stanley McChrystal spoke about perspectives, relationships, and America’s future.

Born into a military family, Gen. McChrystal served for 30+ years in the Army, most recently as the Commander of US/ISAF forces in Afghanistan.  But after the publication of a controversial Rolling Stone article, McChrystal had to tender his resignation.  Since then, the general has led a busy life, publishing his memoirs, serving on the boards of JetBlue, Navistar, and even an Obama military initiative.