Ernest Witebsky Award

The Witebsky award is given to the PhD student with the best academic performance of their class in microbiology and immunology coursework.


You will receive this award if you are the PhD student with the highest grade point average in the microbiology core curriculum. You must have passed the preliminary qualifying exam — usually taken in your second year.

You also will receive the award if you are the medical student with the highest score in microbiology and immunology coursework.


If you are selected as a recipient of the Witebsky award, we’ll notify you with a letter.


If you win this award, you will be recognized during our annual Honors Convocation.

Past Recipients


  • Emily Ivey (PhD Candidate)
  • Essi Tchalla (PhD Candidate)
  • David Goich (PhD Candidate)
  • Waseem Mir (Dental Student)
  • Nat Davis Voos (Medical Student)


  • Alexandra Johnson (PhD Candidate)
  • Katherine Sortino (PhD Candidate)
  • Anna Scott (Dental Student)
  • Austin Bartl (Medical Student)


  • Ashley White (PhD Candidate)
  • Jacob Grace (Dental Student)
  • Michael Cobler-Lichter (Medical Student)
  • Nico Jian Shary (Medical Student)
  • Sarah Quinn (Medical Student)
  • Anna Stovall (PhD Candidate)
  • Courtney Karek (Dental Student)
  • Charles Zhang (Medical Student)
  • Kevin Schauer (Medical Student)


  • Ryan Hess (Medical Student, Class of 2019) 
  • Matthew Kabalan (Medical Student, Class of 2019)


  • Mary Gallo (PhD/MD Candidate, Class of 2020) 
  • Alexandra Morell (Medical Student, Class of 2018)


  • Richard Jin (PhD/MD candidate, Class of 2020) 
  • Paul Wirth (medical student, Class of 2017)


  • Amanda Zunic (PhD candidate, Class of 2018)
  • Amanda Morrison MD '16


  • Caleb Homiski (PhD candidate, Class of 2017)
  • Xi Yang MD '15


  • Jessica Zourelias, MA '14
  • Anthony Bejjani, MD '14


  • Khan Umaer PhD ’15
  • Amy Luckenbaugh, MD ’13


  • Virginia Havel Glazier PhD ’15
  • Mo Fei Liu, MD ’12


  • Bardees Foda, PhD ’12
  • Nicholas Venci, MD ’11

Contact For More Information

Assistant to the Chair

Caroline Golach.

Caroline Golach

Senior Staff Assistant

Microbiology and Immunology

955 Main St. Room 5102B Buffalo, NY 14203-1121

Phone: (716) 829-2993


Ernest Witebsky, MD

Ernest Witebsky, MD, was the founding chair of what is now UB’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology. In 1967, he was appointed director of the Center for Immunology. Upon his death in 1969, the center was renamed in Witebsky’s honor.

Along with Niels Klendshoj, Witebsky isolated the B-antigen found in human blood, a discovery that made blood transfusions safer. Witebsky and his associates also conducted important studies in autoimmune disease and its relation to thyroiditis, Addison’s disease and myasthenia gravis.