Family, friends and classmates release balloons in honor of John Marco Henderson at a 2012 celebration of his life.

Pictured above are the 2016 School of Medicine Alumni Association scholarship recipients. Back row, left to right, alumni association board members Mark Blum, M.D. and John Osborn, M.D., Spienghar Komak, Mena Said, Theo Yonn-Brown, alumni association President Topher Stephenson, M.D. Front row, left to right, Mariam Barseghyan, Christina Monroy, UC Davis School of Medicine Dean Julie Freischlag, M.D., Janée Murray. Missing from photo: Erica Thomas and Manpreet Kaur Bassi.

A Welcome Surprise Alumni Association Awards Student Scholarships

The UC Davis School of Medicine Alumni Association presented eight highly deserving first-year medical students with surprise scholarships of $10,000 each at the Alumni Association Welcome Reception for the Class of 2019 in July.

The awards are made possible thanks to the generous alumni committed to “paying it forward” for future generations of physicians who face both rising education costs and greater uncertainty upon entering practice.

Students are selected on a combination of academic excellence, proven leadership skills and financial need.

“These are students who have demonstrated excellence in their endeavors despite facing significant hurdles,” said association President Topher Stephenson. “All of them share great tenacity and exemplify an incredible commitment to their futures as physicians.”

The association first established the scholarship fund in 1988 and has assisted deserving UC Davis first-year medical students on an annual basis since. The single $500 scholarship given in the program’s first year has risen to as many as 11 $10,000 scholarships annually.

Since all UC Davis medical alumni are association members – and many alumni beyond the association board contribute to the scholarship fund – in many ways the scholarships represent a gift from all UC Davis School of Medicine graduates. Annual contributions at any level, no matter the size, help grow the fund to allow more scholarships to be given each year. The association supports the alumni family as well as current medical students through mentorship, guidance and leadership.

For more information about the scholarship fund and awards, please contact M.L. Farrell, director of alumni engagement, at or 916-734-9410.