By Wendy Sarubbi | May 5, 2014 1:51 pm

Nearly 100 golfers took to the course at Lake Nona’s Golf & Country Club April 28 vying for the best score on the green and in the process raised $30,000 for M.D. student scholarships at the UCF College of Medicine.

The second annual Med School Classic was organized by local business leaders to help UCF attract top students to its new medical school. In two years, the event has raised more than $65,000.  “It’s a wonderful opportunity for people from the community to come together and support the College of Medicine,” said UCF President John C. Hitt, who golfed during the event. “This provides money for scholarships so that we can continue to draw the very best students and establish the college as a premiere institution.”

Scholarships have been a part of the medical school’s short history, as thanks to community donations, UCF’s entire charter class received full four-year scholarships. “We have an amazing community that has supported us from the beginning,” said Dr. Deborah German, vice president for medical affairs and dean of the medical school. “This event is emblematic of the way everyone here in Central Florida jumps in to play a role in building our medical school in Medical City.”

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The Averett, Warmus, Durkee accounting firm the Carlton Fields Jorden Burt law firm were key sponsors of the event and were instrumental in developing the Med School Classic from its inception. “I think the whole community is excited to have a medical school, and a conglomeration of institutions doing cutting-edge research,” said Dan Decubellis of Carlton Fields. “We want to do whatever we can to support that whole idea.” Other participants in the event included Ben Witter, a trick shot golf artist and cancer survivor, and Daunte Culpepper, a former NFL quarterback and UCF alumnus. “I grew up in Central Florida, and I’m glad to be a part of something like this,” Culpepper said. “It’s for a great cause, and to have it here in Lake Nona, it’s beautiful. Great day, great time, just wonderful.”

First-year medical student Nathan Roney attended a post-tournament reception at Lake Nona and told participants the impact that receiving the inaugural Med School Classic Scholarship had on his education. “I don’t think people truly understand how helpful it is for medical students to have these scholarships available for them,” Roney said. “It made the transition going into school that much easier for me, it made it easier to concentrate without having to worry about financial situations. I can really pursue my passion of being a doctor.”

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