UIC celebrates outstanding alumni


UIC celebrated winners of the 2018 Alumni Awards Oct. 11 at the annual Alumni Awards Luncheon. The awards honor alumni for their success in life and work.

This year’s winners are:

Distinguished Service Award

Fruman Jacobson, BA ’70, and Marian Jacobson
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

In 2003, Fruman and Marian Jacobson started a scholarship to honor Fruman’s parents, who were 1920s European immigrants who supported public education. In the past 15 years, more than 40 awards have been given through the Eugenia R. & Max M. Jacobson M.D. Memorial Scholarships.

The Jacobsons have since endowed two more scholarships: the UIC Fruman and Marian Jacobson “Bridges” Fund for Students in Germanic Studies and the Jacobson Family Bowen Scholarship. The Bridges scholarships help students study abroad and pursue research opportunities related to German culture.

The Bowen scholarship is a four-year award for a Bowen High School graduate. The first recipient of the scholarship joined UIC this fall.

“We are deeply moved about the extra effort that goes in every day by the very talented faculty and administrative staff, not to mention the very talented students who come here of their own volition, and work one, two or three jobs to make ends meet in order to graduate from here,” Fruman Jacobson said.


Alumni Achievement Award

Kathleen A. Knafl, Ph.D. ’77
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Professor Emerita, College of Nursing

Kathleen Knafl spent 30 years at the UIC College of Nursing, focusing her groundbreaking research on the impact of chronic pediatric health conditions — such as diabetes, cystic fibrosis and asthma — on family life.

“I had started nursing when research was a growing emphasis of the discipline,” she said. “I came of age professionally at UIC.”

“What inspired me then — what continues to inspire me — is being able to apply those research skills to the real-world challenges that face families when a member has a serious chronic illness.”

A current faculty member of the University of North Carolina, she also has taught at Yale and the Oregon Health & Science University. She has written eight books and more than 15 articles related to her work.

He current research focus is on parents whose children are not expected to survive their hospital stay.


Patrick Magoon, MUPP ’79
College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs 

Since 1997, Patrick Magoon has served as CEO of the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

Under Magoon’s tenure as CEO, the hospital has seen many improvements — including an increase in the number of pediatric patients by 50 percent, more research funding and becoming the country’s first pediatric hospital to earn Magnet status from the American Nurses Credentialing Center. He also led the hospital’s “Heroes for Life” campaign — a successful seven-year health fundraising campaign.

“My job is to make certain [health care professionals] have all the resources that they need to make certain that every child has the opportunity for a healthier future, to live in a safer space, to look forward to a cure through research,” he said. “It’s a privilege to be able to take the skills that I have learned at the university and put them to work.”

He joined the hospital as an intern in 1977 while he was a graduate student at UIC. As a first-generation student, he said a research assistantship allowed him to attend school.

“I want to thank the university for making an investment in me,” he said.


Humanitarian Award

Horace E. Smith, MD ’75
College of Medicine

Dr. Horace Smith, a pediatrician at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital, has helped thousands of local children while also serving others around the world as a global health volunteer.

A first-generation college student, Smith attended medical school at UIC and has since focused his career on pediatric hematology, oncology and transplants.

He has volunteered across the globe, including serving with World Vision International in the 1980s with the AIDS epidemic was emerging.

Since 1980, he also has served as pastor at the 4,000-member Apostolic Faith Church in the Bronzeville neighbor­hood. With the support of the church, he has helped sponsored hundreds of orphaned children.

“UIC has been my inspiration,” Smith said. “I grew up in the projects on the South Side of Chicago and not always thinking I would be able to do certain things. But people who have a heart and value system that welcomes others have always been an inspiration. I’m glad to be an alumnus of the University of Illinois.”


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