M4 Student Awards, 2016-17

Each year, three awards are presented to five deserving senior medical students. At Internal Medicine Grand Rounds this week, we recognized these outstanding future leaders in medicine.

The William R. Wilson Award

The 2016-17 William R. Wilson Award goes to Blake Funke and Austin Greco. These two have shown exceptional accomplishment in their clinical work in Internal Medicine.

Funke~Blake  Greco~Austin

The Wilson Award was created in 1982 to honor the memory of an Internal Medicine faculty member who exemplified the finest in teaching, clinical care, and research. He was described by Wil­liam B. Bean, M.D., then head of the UI Department of Internal Medicine, as an “enthusiastic, bubbling young man full of vitality, curiosity, and confidence.” Upon the establishment of this award, Dr. Bean said that Dr. Wilson “was satisfied with nothing but the highest standards, which required exacting, very hard, and persistent work.”

Previous winners of the Wilson Award include current Internal Medicine members Dr. Margo Schilling (1984-85), Dr. Judy Streit (1987-88), and Dr. Chris Adams (1998-99).

The John and Oral Sebelin Award for Excellence in Internal Medicine

The 2016-17 John and Oral Sebelin Award for Excellence in Internal Medicine goes to Andrew Hornick and Mitchell Pitlick. Each of them have demonstrated excellence in scholarship and show promise in Internal Medicine.

Hornick~Andrew  Pitlick~Mitchell

The Sebelin Award was created in 1982 to honor a special Iowa couple. John and Oral Sebelin lived in Dav­enport, Iowa and came to know the faculty and housestaff of the UI De­partment of Internal Medicine when Mr. Sebelin visited The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics seeking medical care. Through their contact with the late Henry E. Hamilton, M.D., professor in the Division of Hematology-Oncology, the Sebelins became enthusiastic supporters of the Department and the University.

Though the Sebelins were world travelers, they were private people as well, eschewing attention for their support of the University. Without children or close relatives, the Sebelins’ heritage is represented in large part through this award.

Previous winners of the Sebelin Award include current Internal Medicine members Dr. Rebecca Hegeman and Dr. Jeff Meier (1985-86), Dr. Pete Snyder (1988-89), Dr. William Iverson (1994-95), and Dr. Brenda Buikema (2003-04).

The Thomas J. Parsons Award

The 2017 Parsons Award goes to Omid Salaami. The award is presented annually to a senior student who, during com­pletion of his or her junior clerkship in internal medicine, most exhibited the compassion, sensitivity, and humanistic ideals exemplified by Dr. Parsons.


Dr. Parsons’ friends and colleagues knew him as a gentle man of broad interests and abilities. To many he exemplified the complete aca­demic physician, talented in teach­ing, patient care, research, and administration. He was described by students and house officers as a caring individual with scientific and practical advice to share.

The positive effect of genuine warmth and caring combined with a commitment to learning, service, and open communication is inestimable. As Dr. Parsons’ life embodied these qualities, so this award is meant to encourage their discovery by medical students as they begin their careers in patient care and science.

The Parsons Award was established in 1990. Previous winners of the Parsons Award include current Internal Medicine members Dr. Will Zeitler (2012-13) and Dr. Nicole Grogan (2014-15).

Congratulations to all of the winners of this year’s M4 Student Awards and those faculty members who have mentored them along the way. We know that you will do amazing things in your career.

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