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Portrait of Alyse Cunniff

December 21, 2010

SIU Med School Announces Borkon Scholarship

Alyse A. Cunniff, a first-year medical student, has received a monetary award from the Dr. Eli and Claire Borkon Scholarship at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine.  The award is given annually to an SIU medical student from southern Illinois who has financial need.

Cunniff, the daughter of William and Barbara Rose-Cunniff of Bolingbrook, is a graduate of Romeoville High School (2004) and Southern Illinois University Carbondale, where she earned her bachelor’s degree (2009).  

The Borkon Scholarship was established in January 2000.  Borkon was an adjunct professor of physiology at SIU from 1948 to 1970, a department he helped set up.  In 1971, he began serving as assistant dean and clinical professor at the medical school in Carbondale until his retirement in 1976.  He was a member of the search committee that hired the School’s first dean, Dr. Richard H. Moy.  He earned his doctorate and medical degrees at the University of Chicago.

Borkon’s son, Dr. William Borkon, is a graduate of SIU’s charter class (1976).  He and his sister, Barbara Hewson, are trustees of the Eli Borkon Trust.  They personally contribute to the scholarship fund along with friends and former colleagues.  Their father passed away in 2002.

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

Established in 1970, SIU School of Medicine has this year celebrated the 40th anniversary of its founding.  The School’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 Web site is and its main number is 217-545-8000.