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The Student Relations Committee established a new scholarship endowment in 1994 to honor the National Alumni Society’s Distinguished Alumni Award Recipients.  Funds for the establishment of this endowment were generated by the NAS’s special fundraising events and other gifts.  Each year, a one-time scholarship of $4,000 is awarded to a student in honor of the recipient and must be enrolled in the school or course of study of the recipient.  This year, the Distinguished Alumni Scholarship will be awarded to a student in the School of Health Professions.

Will Ferniany, Ph.D. received his Master of Science in Hospital Health Administration from the School of Health Professions in 1975 and his doctorate in Administration and Health Services in 1984. Dr. Ferniany has served as CEO of the UAB Health System since 2008 and has guided the hospital to a top 50 national ranking and constant recognition as one of the best in the U.S. He has been named one of "Birmingham's Most Influential" by the Birmingham Business Journal and a "Hospital and Health System CEO to Know" by the national respected Becker's Hospital Review.


Applicants must:

  • Must have demonstrated leadership abilities while at UAB.
  • Must have demonstrated community involvement.
  • Must provide two letters of recommendation.
  • Must be a history student in the School of Health Professions.
  • Must have a minimum GPA of 3.5.
  • Must have the possibility of becoming an active and supporting alumnus/na.
  • Completed application from the department liaison must be received by the deadline.  Applications can be filled out HERE.


The Office of Alumni Affairs will work with the department or area in the field of study of the current distinguished alumnus/na.  The contact in the school will collect the applications and work with the dean and the recipient of the award.  Six students will be forwarded to the Office of Alumni Affairs and interviewed by a panel of UAB alumni, faculty and staff.


The recipients of this $4,000 award will receive a non-renewable, one-time disbursement at the beginning of the fall semester for tuition and fess only.  No cash disbursements are allowed.