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NEOMED Vice President for Research and Dean of the College of Graduate Studies to Deliver Kent State’s 2014 Commencement Address

December 2, 2014 12:00 AM — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Contact: Heather Griesbach,, 330.325.6675

Walter E. Horton Jr., Ph.D., vice president for research and dean of the College of Graduate Studies at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), will deliver the keynote address at Kent State University's (Kent State) 2014 Advanced Degree Commencement Ceremony. The 249th graduation will be presided over by Beverly Warren, Kent State president, at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 13 at the Memorial Athletic and Convocation Center in Kent, Ohio.

In his capacity as vice president for research, Dr. Horton has facilitated extensive growth of the research and sponsored program portfolio at NEOMED and has helped to develop the University’s public-private partnership strategy to facilitate commercialization and economic development linked to university innovation.

Dr. Horton is the inaugural dean of the College of Graduate Studies, which includes innovative masters, doctoral and graduate certificate programs related to biomedical research, public health and ethics. In addition, he holds a tenured professorship in the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology.

Prior to establishing himself as a distinguished biomedical scientist, Dr. Horton earned his bachelor’s degree in zoology at Kent State, and his doctoral degree in anatomy and cell biology at the University of Cincinnati followed by postdoctoral training in molecular biology at the National Institute of Craniofacial and Dental Research of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Dr. Horton’s pioneering research identified the basic mechanism controlling the gene that codes for one of the major proteins in cartilage. In addition, he has made discoveries that help explain how cartilage ages and what goes wrong in the formation of osteoarthritis. Dr. Horton worked at Eli Lilly in the osteoarthritis drug discovery program and later spent 10 years in the intramural program at the National Institute on Aging, NIH.

As an alumnus, Dr. Horton maintains ties to Kent State and contact with his research counterparts at the university. NEOMED and Kent State collaborate on several initiatives and programs as partner universities, including the Biomedical Sciences Program. Students enroll at and receive their degrees (M.S. and Ph.D.) in one of five biomedical science disciplines at Kent State but have the opportunity to carry out their research with scientists at NEOMED.

In his commencement speech, Dr. Horton will address “Creating Your Own Future.” The Advanced Degree Commencement will serve as a ceremony to confer Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees for graduates of all colleges. Several honors and awards will also be given to a number of individuals during the ceremony.

For 40 years, NEOMED has worked in collaboration with its educational, clinical and research partners to successfully train health professionals and medical researchers who serve and impact the region and beyond. The University trains students in a team-based, interprofessional environment and offers doctor of medicine (M.D.) and doctor of pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degrees, in addition to master’s and doctoral degrees and research opportunities in other medical areas. Visit