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Fannie Emanuel, MD 1915, Inspires Scholarship Fund, Learning Community

Fannie Emanuel, MD 1915 — one of the first African-American women to graduate from the Chicago Medical School (CMS) — dedicated herself to education and service, championing the underserved and underrepresented populations of Chicago. Rosalind Franklin University honors Dr. Emanuel and her legacy through the CMS House and Learning Community Program. Emanuel House provides students a dynamic, engaged and relationship-centered community for curricular learning and development.

Dr. Emanuel's legacy also inspired RFU Trustee Elder Granger, MD, FACP, FACHE, a retired army major general, to establish the Fannie H. Emanuel, MD 1915 Endowed Scholarship Fund. The scholarship will provide financial assistance to African-American CMS students who exemplify Dr. Emanuel’s civic leadership, as demonstrated by their commitment to health equity, community-based care and/or interprofessional care. 

Dr. Emanuel and her husband, a chiropodist, founded the Emanuel Settlement House on Armour Avenue in Chicago in 1908. Emanuel House offered free health care and provided day care for working families, and was available to people of all races. In her mission statement, Dr. Emanuel's stated goal was to "inspire higher ideals of manhood and womanhood, to purify the social condition and encourage thrift and neighborhood pride." 

Dr. Emanuel attended the Chicago Hospital College of Medicine — which eventually became Chicago Medical School — and received her medical degree in 1915. After graduation, she set up her private practice at the Roosevelt State Bank Building at Grand Boulevard and 35th Street in Chicago, and served as a general practice physician to women and children.

A member of Chicago's African-American elite, Dr. Emanuel was active in the Ida B. Wells Women's Club, the Women's Aid of Old Folks Home, and the Delta Sigma Theta sorority. She also served as president of the African-American women's branch of the YWCA, and was on the Board of Directors for the Phyllis Wheatley Home for Girls from 1922–1927. Dr. Fannie Emanuel died on March 31, 1934, leaving behind her ethic of service and dedication to health care which continues to serve as an inspiration for years to come. 

Posted February 13, 2020
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