|President Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D., thanks philanthropist Dan Parman for his generosity to the UT Health Science Center by naming the auditorium foyer in his honor.|
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Faculty, staff, students, community leaders and donors joined UT Health Science Center President Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D., for a special luncheon and ceremony Tuesday, Oct. 23, honoring Dan Parman for his two decades of generosity to The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. The program also honored several donors who have funded scholarships for outstanding students.
Through his generosity, Parman established the Dan F. Parman Distinguished Chair in Medicine, which has supported research in Parkinson’s disease, HIV/AIDS, leukemia and diabetes. His philanthropy also has supported a multidisciplinary voice center and the university’s world-class Research Imaging Center.Naming of foyer is fitting tribute
To recognize Parman’s generosity and leadership, Dr. Cigarroa announced the naming of the Parman Auditorium Foyer in honor of Parman and his family.
“This is really one of the most important entry ways to the university,” Dr. Cigarroa said about the auditorium foyer, noting that students take exams in the auditorium and special events held there to welcome distinguished guests, including the many world-renowned speakers for the university’s annual Presidential Distinguished Lecture
. “Dan is one of the most generous philanthropists in San Antonio,” he said recalling that the Parman chair was one of the earliest transformative gifts to the university.
“I am both humbled and honored to have my name associated anywhere with this great institution, but especially with this special place,” Parman said. “This day is not about me. This day is about reaffirming our support to this institution and having a vision for the future. I am just a facilitator of that. I prefer to think of education as a foundation. The foundation put into place for the Health Science Center was a powerful one. Now we must use our foresight to help those who are advancing discoveries. It is now our turn.”
Scholarships vital to future of educating health care professionals
|Scholarship winners had the opportunity to thank donors at the luncheon. They include (front row, left to right) donors Melissa S. Jernigan and Beth Box; Patricia Brewer, assistant dean for student affairs; Juanita de Luna, Master of Physical Therapy (M.P.T.) student; Michelle Reyes, Master of Deaf Education and Hearing Science student; Emily Hefft, student in the Master of Occupational Therapy program; and Associate Dean Douglas Murphy. In the second row are Michael Geelhoed, assistant professor of physical therapy; Mindy Lucas, M.P.T. student; Chris Rabago, representative from the Physical Therapy Alumni Association; and Kristi Bass, M.P.T. student.|
During the luncheon Dr. Cigarroa recognized other donors and introduced new donors and their scholarship recipients. He emphasized the importance that scholarship gifts play in the education of the health care professionals of tomorrow.
“At the Health Science Center, we are responsible for educating the next generation of health care professionals, and that is a responsibility we take very seriously,” Dr. Cigarroa said.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, about 20 percent of the U.S. population resides in primary medical care Health Professional Shortage Areas. Health Professional Shortage Areas may have shortages of primary medical care, dental or mental health providers and may be urban or rural areas. The UT Health Science Center educates students through its six campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg where large populations of medically underserved reside. Many of the students who graduate from the Health Science Center return to these regions to practice.
“Students count on us to provide a platform of excellence. Donors, I cannot think of a moment when I have been prouder – proud to see the future of the biosciences and proud to see those who are making this all possible.”Donors receive special recognition
Among the newest scholarship endowments at the Health Science Center recognized during the luncheon are the Barbara Warren Cramblet Memorial Scholarship, the Nancy Smith Hurd Endowed Nursing Scholarship, the Dr. and Mrs. A.D. Major Endowed Scholarship, the Kirti and Mahendra Patel Endowed Scholarship for Ethics and Humanity in Medical Education, and the Donald C. Stephenson Endowed Memorial Scholarship in Respiratory Care.
Nearly 80 students attended the luncheon, and several shared the microphone to personally thank the donors for their generosity and support.
Dr. Cigarroa closed the ceremony with a special message of appreciation to the donors. “Thank you for making the Health Science Center one of our nation’s best and thank you for your support. We give you our pledge to advance the missions of this university to make this community a healthier place by educating the next generation.”