108 Men and Women Graduate From UCSD School of Medicine


November 14, 2005  |  

Amid the cheers of family and friends, 108 men and women received their M.D. degrees on Sunday, June 6, 2004, at Commencement Ceremonies for the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine.

Congratulating the new physicians was commencement speaker Helen Ranney, M.D., UCSD professor emeritus and former chair of the UCSD Department of Medicine, 1973-86. Dr. Ranney, the first woman to chair a department of medicine in the United States, noted that this is a time when the graduates can practice both the art and science of medicine, taking into account all the promise of today’s post-genomic era.

Among the graduates were several award winners (see sidebar) and individuals with eclectic backgrounds.

Graduating medical student Sam Hughes, who also holds a Ph.D. in classical studies, was selected by his classmates to deliver the student speech at commencement, and treated his peers to a quote in Latin about medical science. UCSD Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences Edward W. Holmes, introduced Hughes as “Dr. Dr.” Hughes. Hughes will complete his residency training in neurosurgery at UCSD Medical Center.

Among the other graduates:

Gerardo Rodriquez (pictured with fellow members of the Latino Medical Students Association) is the son of Mexican immigrants and the first in his family to graduate from high school, college and now medical school. Planning to become a surgeon, Rodriquez will do his residency training at the State University of New York, Stony Brook.

Lara Hall was the recipient of multiple awards given to 2004 graduates (see photo). Prior to medical school, she spent two years in the Peace Corps teaching health education and sanitation measures to people in the Congo. Noting that she’s always wanted to help the underserved, Hall will do her family medicine residency training at The Greater Lawrence Family Health Center in Massachusetts, which serves the urban poor.

Another multiple-award winner, Erin Fortune, was an Americorps volunteer and served at a children’s agency in Nevada as a minority outreach coordinator prior to medical school. She’ll be a pediatrician following additional training at UCSD Medical Center.

Stephen Suydam graduated from the Hastings School of Law and practiced for four years in Los Angeles before entering medical school. Although he enjoyed many aspects of the family law that he practiced, he chose medicine so that he could further contribute to society. During medical school, his independent study project wedded his legal and medical training when he developed a guide for sharing confidential patient information between hospitals. Suydam will do his medical residency in anesthesiology at Loma Linda University Medical Center.

Matt Fitzpatrick was a military helicopter pilot for seven years prior to entering medical school. His undergraduate degree had been in liberal arts. He plans to become a psychiatrist, with his residency training at UC San Francisco.

In all, 25 cities will be the next home for UCSD’s medical school graduates as they pursue their residencies in numerous specialties: 36 internal medicine, 14 surgery, 11 psychiatry, 10 pediatrics, 9 obstetrics/gynecology, 7 family practice, 6 anesthesiology, 6 emergency medicine, 2 internal medicine/pediatrics, 2 ophthalmology, 2 neurosurgery, and 1 each in orthopedics, radiology, orthopedic surgery, radiation oncology, family medicine/psychiatry, otolaryngology and plastic surgery. Sixty-eight of the graduates will complete residencies in California, with 17 staying at UCSD.



2004 UCSD School of Medicine Awards

Merck Award for Outstanding Contributions to Education

Stephanie Yiwei Lu

School of Medicine Leadership Award

Rambod Amirovin, Kathleen Hubbard, Kathryn “Katie” Williams

Department of Medicine Senior Award

Kathryn “Katie” Williams

Pharmacology Education and Research Foundation Medical Student Award

Dung Nguyen, William Lee Philips

Foundation Achievement Award in Surgery

Kelley Hodgkiss-Harlow

Department of Pediatrics Senior Award

Erin Fortune

Department of Neurosciences Senior Award

Karunesh Ganguly

American Academy of Neurology Student Prize

Omar Ghausi

Department of Psychiatry Senior Award

Kathleen Hubbard

Department of Reproductive Medicine Senior Award

Rana Shayya

Primary Care Clerkship Award

Oscar Casillas

Edwin Reithmayer, M.D. Memorial Scholarship, Award San Diego Academy of Family Physicians

Lara Hall

Emergency Medicine Senior Award, Society for Academic Emergency Medicine

Daniel Firestone

Roderick K. Calverley Humanitarian Service Award

Lara Hall

The Mark B. Fefferman, M.D. Memorial Award

Barbara Garcia

The Debi Taylor Award for Excellence in the Study of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Dung Nguyen

American Medical Women’s Association Glasgow Memorial Achievement Award

Erin Fortune

Joseph Stokes, III Award

Lara Hall

Samuel B. Hamburger Memorial Thesis Award

First Prize, William Phillips; Second Prize, Holly Hang Nguyen; Honorable Mention, Eric J. Hemminger, Winston W. Lien, Stephen G. Ong

The John and Lola Ross Award in the Science and Culture of Medicine

Armida Moreno, David Sykes

The George G. Glenner Memorial Award, sponsored by the Department of Pathology

Erin Fortune

Arlene J. and Dr. Bernard Goodhead Service Award in Oncology

David Sykes

The Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award, presented by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation

Erin Fortune

UCSD Medical Alumni Association

Carrlene Harper Memorial Scholarship, Lara Hall

Bud Whipple Memorial Endowed Scholarship, Hoang Nguyen

Faculty Awards

Kaiser “Excellence in Teaching”

Selected by:

First year students, Nora Laiken, Ph.D., Medicine

Second year students, Lawrence Hansen, M.D., Pathology and Neurosciences

Third year students, Charles Goldberg, M.D., Medicine

Fourth year students, David Lehman, M.D., Psychiatry

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