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portrait of Chris Stephenson
portrait of Rachel Needham

December 14, 2011

SIU Med Students Receive Scholarships

Two fourth-year medical students from Southern Illinois University School of Medicine have received scholarships from the Southern Illinois Medical Association (SIMA).

Christopher Stephenson is the son of Pat and Karen Gauen of Highland and Ric and Vonda Stephenson of Edwardsville.  He is a graduate of Highland High School (2004) and Washington University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering (2008).

Rachel Needham is the daughter of Neal Needham of Dongola and Cindy Mosley of Jonesboro.  She is a graduate of Anna-Jonesboro High School (2003) and SIU Carbondale, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in physiology (2007).

The SIMA scholarships are awarded annually to two senior medical students from the southern Illinois area who plan to practice in primary care medicine.  SIMA is the oldest medical society in Illinois.

Needham also received the Eleanor R. Huggins Memorial Scholarship at SIU.  The award is given annually to a student who has attended Anna-Jonesboro High School and is enrolled in pre-med studies or medical school.

The Eleanor R. Huggins Memorial Scholarship was established in June 1995 by George K. Huggins in memory of his wife, who wanted to become a physician but was unable to attain her goal because of the economics of the time.  Both attended Anna-Jonesboro High School.
Gifts received by the Southern Illinois University Foundation support the growth of the School of Medicine.  Individuals interested in making a donation can contact the SIU Foundation office at 217-545-2955 weekdays or online at   

Established in 1970, SIU School of Medicine’s mission is to assist the people of central and southern Illinois in meeting their health needs through education, patient care, research and community service.  Its website is and its main number is 217-545-8000.