Caroline Cody, M.D., Memorial Scholarship
Caroline Annette Cody, a member of the University of Florida College of Medicine Class of 2003, tragically lost her life during her first year of medical school. Caroline was an inspiration to all who knew her and would have become a wonderful and caring physician. From the beginning of medical school, it was clear Caroline would be a leader among her class. She had a long history of leadership, including serving as class president during her undergraduate studies at Xavier University in New Orleans. She quickly became the person we choose to represent our class and looked to for guidance. Caroline was elected as a first-year representative of the Medical College Council, contributed her enthusiasm as a member of the freshman class’ executive board, and became involved with the UF chapter of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA).
Knowing her skills were needed beyond the class, Caroline extended her selflessness into the community at large. With her interest in both adolescent health and obstetrics and gynecology, she helped organize SNMA’s health education project, which placed medical students in Gainesville High School classes to discuss safe sexual health practices.
Caroline was also committed to the world outside of medicine. While she dedicated herself to her studies, she recognized that medicine wasn’t the only thing in her life. She had a deep commitment to family that was to be admired. She was close to her parents and brother, setting her books aside to stay connected to them. Caroline often credited her accomplishments to her parents, always recognizing the many opportunities they provided for her. She spent as much time as she could with them, returning frequently to her Jacksonville home. Caroline recognized the importance of maintaining a balanced life. She didn’t just want medical school to be a dedication to medical knowledge; she wanted to continue growing in other ways, as well. She was a talented pianist, auditioned with the UF music department, and took private piano lessons throughout first year.
While it is clear that Caroline was involved with community service and leadership activities, this is not why our class is dedicated to preserving her memory. Instead, it is her character that we cherish. With Caroline, you could be sure she meant what she said. In her words and actions, she was truly genuine. Her sincerity was evident and made people feel at ease with her. Even in the most artificial situations, she could create a warm atmosphere. In our first taped standardized patient interactions, one internal medicine attending asked her “Are you sure you’ve never done this before? Because it sure seems like you have.” Caroline had a unique calmness and composure that impressed even our most seasoned professors. She was a treasure.
Orange was one of Caroline’s favorite colors. Many of us remember her bright orange backpack she carried daily. It was as spirited as her smile and personality. Wearing the orange ribbon symbolizes her memory and reminds us of the wonderful and caring physician she would have become.
The Caroline Annette Cody Memorial Scholarship
The Class of 2000 donated their class treasury to establish the Caroline Annette Cody Memorial Scholarship in her memory. Their generous contribution was supplemented by donations from the College of Medicine, Shands Teaching Hospital and others. This scholarship is awarded to a rising fourth-year student who demonstrates the personal characteristics and commitment to community service exemplified by Caroline. Their personal characteristics should include those of a warm and caring personality, commitment to maintaining balance and being well rounded, having a desire to help others, and demonstrating concern for the community at large. The recipient will receive a $1,000 scholarship and will have his or her name engraved on a permanent plaque located in the first floor hallway of the College of Medicine.
To date here is a list of beneficiaries of the Caroline Annette Cody, M.D., Memorial Scholarship: