Baker’s Estate Gift Endows Scholarship and Chair to Benefit Medical Students

Photo of a medical professional.

The University of Arizona College of Medicine–Tucson received an $8.8 million gift from the estate of Ronald K. Baker, a 1975 alumnus, including the largest endowed scholarship gift ever donated to the college.

A significant portion will establish the Ronald K. Baker, MD, Scholarship Endowment to support medical students at the college. Remaining funds will establish the Ronald K. Baker Endowed Chair in Anesthesiology.

Funding for the endowed chair will maximize the college’s investments in promising research programs and faculty recruitment while also helping the UA generate additional funding to sustain and expand teaching and research.

The gift provides scholarship support for current and future classes of medical students with a single requirement: financial need. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, 75% of medical school students who graduated in 2018 had student loan debt (averaging $196,520).

Baker, who died in June 2017, earned two degrees at the UA: a doctorate in chemistry and a medical degree. “Dr. Baker did not forget his time at the University of Arizona and the role it played in shaping his career,” said John-Paul Roczniak, president and CEO of the UA Foundation. “I am so proud that it meant enough that he left an incredible gift to benefit generations of medical students to come.”


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