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Retired doctor establishes School of Medicine scholarship

Dr. Ronald R. Scobbo, a retired internist who lives in White Sulphur Springs, donated $100,000 to establish the endowed Scobbo and Frappaolo Families Scholarship.

Dr. Ronald R. Scobbo (L) and his wife, Jeanne Scobbo (R)

Fourth-year West Virginia University School of Medicine students pursuing clinical careers in internal medicine will benefit from a new scholarship that honors a retired alum’s immigrant grandparents. 

Dr. Ronald R. Scobbo, a retired internist who lives in White Sulphur Springs, donated $100,000 to establish the endowed Scobbo and Frappaolo Families Scholarship. The merit-based scholarship will be awarded to a fourth-year medical student who plans to practice internal medicine in a patient setting and demonstrates academic and clinical excellence.

The scholarship is named for Scobbo’s grandparents, Francesco Scobbo and Dominic Frappaolo, and their families. They emigrated to the United States from Italy in the early 1900s and settled in Port Washington, N.Y. Though they arrived penniless, they worked hard to establish successful businesses – including one that endures today – and inspire generations of family members who have worked in business, healthcare, public safety and other fields. 

“They stood for hard work, integrity, self-reliance, faith, family values and excellence in all that they did and passed those qualities and traditions onto their descendants,” Scobbo said. “This scholarship will recognize and reward these values in its recipients, so these traditional values continue.”

Those values guided Scobbo during more than 30 years in practice, beginning in Morgantown. He earned his medical degree from the WVU School of Medicine in 1971, after transferring from the University of Bologna in Italy, and stayed to complete his residency in internal medicine with Dr. E.B. Flink, founding chair of the Department of Medicine.

Scobbo describes Flink as “the best clinician” he ever met, based on how Flink taught residents to care for patients. Driven by Flink’s example, his own family values and a passion to serve others, Scobbo established the General Internal Medicine Clinic, which later became the Division of General Internal Medicine, at WVU before leaving the University to join The Greenbrier Clinic, a WVU Medicine partner. Scobbo practiced there for 20 years, including as medical director, before retiring in 1999.

Scobbo and his wife, Jeanne, began their generous philanthropic relationship with WVU by planning a gift through their estate, which will establish the Ronald and Jeanne Scobbo Chair of General Internal Medicine in the Department of Medicine upon their passing.

The Scobbos made their gifts through the WVU Foundation, the nonprofit organization that receives and administers private donations on behalf of the University.

To make a gift to the WVU School of Medicine, contact Clare Flanagan, assistant vice president for health sciences development, at 304-293-0788 or cmflanagan@hsc.wvu.edu; or Patty Lonsbary, director of development, at 304-293-1448 or patricia.lonsbary@hsc.wvu.edu.

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