Dr. Ramon D. Buckley Graduate Student Scholarship
The Dr. Ramon D. Buckley Graduate Student Scholarship Fund honors the late Ramon “Ray” Buckley. The fund was established by his daughter Kimberly Vargas; her husband, Robert; and Ray’s grandson, Douglas Ramon Buckley Vargas.
Ray Buckley was born on a farm in Rake, Iowa, in 1929. His early education took place in a one-room schoolhouse. At 13, he contracted a bovine virus that was mistakenly diagnosed as polio. The result left him physically disabled. However, he never permitted his physical difficulties to be an obstacle in his educational or professional pursuits.
After graduating from Iowa State Teachers College in 1957, with a master’s degree in education, Ray taught high school science while saving money for his Ph.D. program. Ray completed a dissertation on muscular dystrophy and earned his Ph.D. degree from the University of Iowa in 1961. His educational experiences at Iowa forged lifelong friendships and launched his bright future in research and teaching. After his UI graduation, he moved to southern California to conduct pulmonary research at the University of Southern California (USC). It was at USC where Ray met his wife, Pat. Ray conducted initial smog studies, which were used to establish the Environmental Protection Agency’s standards for car-exhaust emissions.
Ray was a naturally gifted researcher and teacher. If he wasn’t lecturing his medical students about cardiopulmonary physiology, he was mentoring those who assisted him in his research laboratories. Ray always was accessible to his students, even opening his home for many to stay during the summer. In fact, it was one of his medical students who eventually discovered Ray’s incorrect polio diagnosis, became his personal physician, and helped him live a much longer life than ever thought possible. Ray passed away in 2006.
To honor Ray’s appreciation for his University of Iowa education, the Vargas family has created this scholarship in his name.
Congratulations on receiving the Dr. Ramon D. Buckley Graduate Student Scholarship