This spring, more than 50 members of the MD class of 2023 and guests gathered at UF Wilmot Botanical Gardens for a ceremony where longtime faculty member Shelley Collins, MD, was selected as this year’s UF Hippocratic Award winner.
The class elected to bestow the honor upon Collins, the senior associate dean for undergraduate medical education and a professor of pediatrics, naming her an exemplary teacher and mentor who embodies the ideals of the Hippocratic oath.
The graduating class began the tradition of selecting a Hippocratic Award winner when the class of 1969 planted the original UF Hippocratic tree in front of UF Health Shands Hospital. Students who nominated Collins for the award said she serves as an example of a mentor and leader in academic medicine.
“From every interaction I’ve had with her,” one student said, “I’ve left it feeling welcomed, engaged, uplifted and grateful that I had a chance to talk with her.”
“She is a phenomenal clinician, adviser and cheerleader for us medical students while applying to residency programs … she has been instrumental in both my personal growth and my growth as a medical student,” another wrote.
Collins wiped away tears at the ceremony as she thanked the class for sharing their thoughts.
“This ceremony always is renewing for me because it reminds me of what our opportunities are to be great physicians to our patients and role models for you,” said Collins, who has been a faculty member at the College of Medicine for 17 years. “And it embodies everything I believe in as a physician and an educator. When I think about the people who have been awarded this, they are the people I look up to. To think you would think of me in that way, it’s really everything.”