Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Two Honors Named for Katie at FIU

Dear Friends and Family,

I am writing to tell you about two honors that Florida International University’s (FIU) chapter of the Delta Omega national public health honorary society is establishing this year in Katie’s name, to honor graduate student leaders and public health students committed to working abroad in the field of international public health.

As you may already know, Katie was president of the Student Public Health Association (SPHA) during the 2005-2006 school year. In that time, she initiated SPHA’s expansion to include active alumni participation, coordinated SPHA events and meetings, and even oversaw the redesign of its logo. At the request of the Stempel School of Public Health (SSPH) dean, in December 2005, Katie worked with a friend and Stempel alumna, Kristy Siegel, to establish the Alpha Omega (AO) chapter of Delta Omega, the only national honorary society for public health professionals and graduate students. Upon graduating with her MPH, with an emphasis in health promotion, Katie was inducted into the first class of Alpha Omega. During the 2006-2007 school year, Katie served as the founding vice president, as well as the Alumni Adviser of SPHA.

This academic year, AO will present the first annual “Alpha Omega Excellence in Leadership Award,” renamed the “Alpha Omega Katie Evans Outstanding Leadership Award,” at SPHA’s annual student and alumni semi-formal event in Miami, FL. Katie will be the first to receive this recognition and the family will be presented with an engraved crystal award. The award will annually recognize a chapter member who displays excellence in public health by challenging traditional public health practice in a creative and positive manner, leadership qualities in the Chapter, and outstanding promotion of the field of public health. The “Alpha Omega Katie Evans Outstanding Leadership Award” is a non-monetary recognition. Ironically, it is being aptly renamed from an award that, in the last year, Katie worked to create.

At the student and alumni event, AO will also announce an annual scholarship in Katie’s name. The “Alpha Omega Katie Evans Memorial Scholarship” will be given annually to a graduate student leader who, like Katie, chooses to work abroad in the field of international public health. It is being funded entirely by direct donations to AO. Kristy Siegel, founding and current AO president, recently contacted me to explain that Stempel School of Public Health (SSPH) faculty, students, and alumni expressed an interest to establish the scholarship, as a separate means of recognizing Katie’s tremendous contribution to the SSPH, SPHA, and AO communities. The scholarship will be administered by the executive board of Alpha Omega, and will follow a formal application process executed in the spring by the Alpha Omega executive board with the assistance of SPHA and SSPH.

It is a testament to the good work that Katie did, and the wonderful presence that she continues to be in all of our lives, that so many of you have been so thoughtful in your words and actions this summer. Both the leadership award and the scholarship will recognize Katie’s life and work at FIU a legacy to those who follow in her footsteps.

If you are in a position to do so, I would like to encourage you to make a fully tax-deductible charitable donation to the “Katie Evans Memorial Scholarship”:

Checks payable to “Delta Omega” (with “Katie scholarship” in For/Memo line), mailed to:

Delta Omega
c/o Dr. Mary Jo Trepka
Stempel School of Public Health
11200 SW 8th Street, HLS 595
Miami, FL 33199

Please pass this message along to anyone you know who may be interested in this news. Please feel free to contact me (wevbo@hotmail.com), Kristy Siegel (fiualphaomega@yahoo.com), or the current alumni adviser of SPHA (and a good friend of Katie’s), Anamarie Garces de Marcilla (anamariegdm@yahoo.com), with any questions regarding the scholarship, Katie’s work with SPHA and AO, or any other concerns.

Thank you, and Love,


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