Volume 93, Issue 42

Friday, November 12, 1999


Super Build proposal released

Opt-out fee debate heats up USC meeting

Scholarship sets $1 million aside

An O.J. a day keeps the doctor away

Plea bargaining focus of show

I'll take door #3

Caught on campus

Bass Ackwards

Scholarship sets $1 million aside

By Heather Buchan
Gazette Writer

Western medical students are set to benefit from a $1 million gift donated by the family of a late Western alumnus who was a celebrity in his field.

The Charles Drake Student Awards in Medicine were established earlier this week, to help medical students in their quest to become doctors, said John Drake Jr., the late Drake's grandson.

He said the family decided to make the million dollar donation since medical students are currently facing tough times. "The family realizes the heavy financial burden of medical students," he said. "The gift was intended to help alleviate that financial burden, specifically in the areas of diabetes, neurosurgery and ophthalmology," he said.

The awards, in the form of scholarships, will help medical students because they will make education more affordable, said Western's VP-external Ted Garrard. Garrard added, the donations will give support in a variety of different initiatives to both undergraduate and graduate students by donating $100,000 every year, for the next 10 years.

Drake, who passed away last September, was a world-renowned neurosurgeon at Western, and a Western alumnus, Garrard said. "He was a pioneer in neurological techniques. He really is a legend in the medical field."

The gift will be matched by existing scholarship funds from Western, as well as the provincial government, bringing the grand total to over $2 million, Garrard added.

Dianne Cunningham, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities said the province was pleased to put forth funding towards researchers in the faculty of medicine and dentistry. She added she was proud of the funding the Drake family was donating to honour Charles, who was a legacy not only to the Western community, but to the London and medical communities.

"I knew him well," she said. "He was a great citizen. The real incentive here is exactly what Dr. Drake would have wanted," she said, explaining medical students would get special acknowledgment for their hard work.

George Carruthers, chair of the department of medicine, said although the reward targets students, Drake was also highly respected within the medical faculty. "This is an absolutely wonderful memorial to Dr. Charles Drake, reflecting the high regard with which he was held within the faculty," he said.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999