Stamatakis Golf Classic Raises $248,000
July 29, 2009
This year’s 8th annual Manuel Stamatakis Golf Classic held by Drexel University College of Medicine raised $248,000, bringing the total raised to $1.9 million since the event debuted in 2002.
184 golfers teed off and enjoyed a sunny day at Philadelphia Country Club on July 27. Their generosity supports a scholarship fund in the name of Drexel University College of Medicine chairman Manuel Stamatakis. The scholarships benefit medical students with proven academic ability and financial need.
This year’s recipients are Barbara Nightingale (Class of 2010), Caspian Oliai (Class of 2011), Akash M. Patel (Class of 2013), and Christopher Weiss (Class of 2012).
“Participating in the education of medical students is beyond rewarding and very exciting. I really believe in the scholarship process for medical students and have come to understand the tremendous need we have for qualified and dedicated physicians in this country and throughout the world,” Stamatakis said.
Co-chairs for this year’s golf classic were Richard V. Homan, MD, senior vice president for health affairs and Annenberg Dean at Drexel University College of Medicine; Michael P. Halter, CEO of Hahnemann University Hospital; and William R. Sasso, Esq., chairman of Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young, LLP. Interim President Chuck Pennoni served as honorary co-chair.
2009 Manuel N. Stamatakis Medical Scholars
Class of 2010
“Thank you very much for the Manuel N. Stamatakis Scholarship. This award will help alleviate some of the financial stress that I will face when I graduate from medical school next year and begin my career in family medicine.”
Barbara Nightingale is an actively engaged, fourth-year medical student with a superlative academic record and an even more admirable set of leadership qualities. Barbara’s classmates have elected her to serve on the Student Government Association as the student representative to the College of Medicine Student Promotions Committee for all four years of her tenure at the College. As a member of the Wellness Committee, Barbara spearheaded an initiative to hold regular yoga and kickboxing classes on campus.
Barbara completed her undergraduate degree in chemical and biomedical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University and her master’s degree in biology at Duquesne University. A recipient of the prestigious Albert Schweitzer Fellowship, Barbara worked extensively with community-based organizations to improve the healthcare of low-income communities — a dedication she now shares with Philadelphia through continued volunteerism. Barbara’s overarching goal as a future physician is to provide care for underserved communities and decrease disparities in healthcare.
Class of 2011
“I greatly appreciate the work and sacrifice that are required to make the Manuel N. Stamatakis Scholarship possible. Thank you for bolstering my ability to serve my community and the medical field.”
From the tender age of 10, Caspian Oliai knew that he wanted to become a doctor. He was inspired by the skilled team of surgeons and health professionals who came together to save the life of his baby sister, who was born with a rare heart anomaly, and provided his family with the compassion and hope needed to overcome such a difficult and adverse time.
Caspian’s sister’s early battle for life would be the first of many challenges that his family would face. But, as Caspian shares, those trying times serve as motivating factors that perpetually drive him to persevere when confronted with seemingly intractable challenges. In fact, he is thankful for those experiences as they provide him with a unique socio-medical perspective and will enable him to become an empathic physician.
Caspian is in his third year at the College of Medicine and is performing extremely well in the medical school curriculum. Not surprisingly, Caspian is interested in studying the ways medical science and humanism can be incorporated to provide exceptional care. Currently, Caspian is focusing on a career in cardiology, and it is his dream to join an urban practice that offers free services to indigent populations.
Class of 2013
“Thanks to your generosity, I will be able to continue my volunteer research activities in tissue engineering, a passion that has enriched my education and continues to inspire me today.”
Akash Patel is one of only two students in the highly selective accelerated BS/MD program in the School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems at Drexel and knows well the sacrifice and tenacity required to realize his career dreams. In June 2009, Akash graduated from Drexel University with a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering. He is now preparing to enter his first year at the College of Medicine, where he intends to continue lifesaving research in tissue engineering.
Akash is the first son of immigrant parents and will be the first member of his family to attend medical school. With his medical degree, Akash aspires to be a pioneer in the medical field and contribute to groundbreaking advancements in the prevention and treatment of disease.
As a founding committee member of Drexel University’s annual Relay for Life, a fundraising event that benefits the American Cancer Society, Akash would like to expand his charitable activities and initiate similar events that connect students with the community to raise public awareness and support for important issues in healthcare.
Class of 2012
“I would like to sincerely thank you for helping to finance my medical education at Drexel. The assistance you have given me will help me to assist many others in the future.”
Christopher Weiss is not like most medical students. After a successful career in the private sector, Christopher courageously decided to follow his longtime dream of becoming a physician and entered medical school. He was 38 with a family of his own to support.
According to Christopher, his desire to study medicine grew exponentially with each passing day as new life experiences helped to chart his course to medical school. Ultimately, Christopher would like to practice pediatric or emergency medicine or a combination of the two.
Now in his second year at Drexel, Christopher is actively engaged in a number of student organizations and is a phenomenal student. Christopher is currently on rotation in the Emergency Department at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia. Christopher’s training in the emergency room has served as further confirmation that medicine is the right path for him by providing the “opportunity to help support the many underserved populations of our city — the economically disadvantaged, recent immigrants and, most of all, children.”