During the UT Southwestern Medical School commencement ceremonies on May 7, Southwestern Medical Foundation presented the 2019 Ho Din Award to Dr. Bethany Werner.
“Through her compassionate spirit and academic devotion, Dr. Werner has embodied the vision upon which the Ho Din Award was founded. Bethany is a tremendous inspiration, and it is an honor to welcome her into this legacy of great accomplishment.”
Kathleen M. Gibson, President and CEO, Southwestern Medical Foundation
Dr. Marvin Stone, renowned oncologist and member of the Southwestern Medical Foundation Board of Trustees, presented the Award to Werner, which included the commemorative Ho Din medal and a scholarship of $10,000. Stone completed fellowship training at UT Southwestern, serving on its faculty until 1976, having risen to the rank of associate professor with tenure, when he moved to Baylor University Medical Center to become the first chief of oncology. He continued as a clinical professor in the Department of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern Medical School after moving to Baylor.
The Ho Din Award, instituted by Southwestern Medical Foundation in 1943, recognizes those who embody the qualities inherent in all great physicians— medical wisdom, human understanding, and compassion. It represents the ideals and aspirations on which the school was built and continues to be the highest honor bestowed on a UT Southwestern medical student today.
“Without exception, Ho Din recipients are outstanding students who progress and excel in their careers after receiving the Award,” said Dr. Stone, who has known 20 Awardees over the years. “These doctors’ abilities to surpass expectations in either clinical practice or academic medicine, or both, is really quite impressive. The Ho Din Award is a good predictor of future success and I look forward to following Dr. Werner’s accomplishments as a physician.”
Academic Leadership and Service to Community
Bethany Werner graduated magna cum laude from the University of Texas at Dallas with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology in 2015. She was awarded numerous honors including the Academic Excellence Honors Scholarship, the Kappa Alpha Theta Virginia Bryant Shilstone Scholarship and induction into Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society. Throughout college, Werner excelled academically while serving as Captain of the UT Dallas NCAA Volleyball team, for which she was recognized as Distinguished Scholar Athlete and Academic All-Conference, and her team were American Southwestern Conference Regular Season Champions.
During college, Werner mentored rising high school seniors through the Rotary Youth Leadership program, mentored and coached youth volleyball players, and volunteered for the Dallas Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program. As a medical student, Werner has become a manager and a regular volunteer at the UTSW Office of Global Health’s Agape Clinic, providing much-needed medical care to disadvantaged populations in East Dallas, with the help of her fluency in Spanish.
“Throughout medical school, on rotations, and through service with organizations, I have worked with many of my classmates and so many of them are intelligent, driven and compassionate. Being able to represent that group is a huge honor for me; that I’m able to win this Award and exhibit the qualities that we’re looking for in our graduating students, it’s very humbling.”
Dr. Bethany Werner, 2019 Ho Din Award Winner
Werner serves as a Director of the 2019 “United to Serve Health Fair,” where she manages all components including education, screening, translations, and nutrition. She has served as a mentor in the Health Professions Recruitment and Exposure Program, as a peer mentor for the Academic Colleges, and has coordinated the woman’s exam skills clinic. As a member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society, Werner spearheaded the panel for second year medical students as part of their clerkship orientation.
During medical school, Werner completed several research projects including one investigating cases of cutaneous presentations of metastatic ovarian cancer, and she developed, evaluated, and presented nationally a curriculum module for the Obstetrics and Gynecology clerkship on contraception. Dr. Werner will soon begin her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at UT Southwestern Medical Center.
“Bethany is a gifted student who is distinguished through her extraordinary initiative, teamwork, and compassion,” said Dr. W. P. Andrew Lee, Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Provost, Dean of UT Southwestern Medical School.
The Ho Din Award Origin and Legacy
In 1943, at the first meeting of the Board of Trustees of Southwestern Medical College, the Board voted to establish an annual award to recognize an individual who best exemplified the ideal physician envisioned by the founders.
In special circumstances, the Award has been presented to faculty members or administrators who exhibit the spirit of Ho Din through their service to humanity.
Among the first recipients of the Ho Din Award was Dr. Edward H. Cary. Cary was noteworthy as a founder of Southwestern Medical Foundation and later Southwestern Medical College (now UT Southwestern), leaving an indelible mark on the medical profession in Dallas and medical education in the state of Texas. He served as head of the Texas Medical Association and the American Medical Association.
In 2016, Southwestern Medical Foundation presented Dr. Donald W. Seldin with the Ho Din Award for his exceptional contributions to medicine, dedicated service to the students, and iconic leadership of Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern for 36 years.
Throughout its history, UT Southwestern has received distinction based on the extraordinary achievements of its faculty and graduates. The recipients of the Ho Din Award have, likewise, achieved success in their respective fields, including Dr. Joseph L. Goldstein – winner of the 1966 Ho Din Award and winner of the 1985 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine.