While David Lans, D.O.’81, always knew he would follow his father, Allan Lans, D.O.’58, into medicine, he also has always loved music, art and the humanities thanks in large part to his mother, Joan. An accomplished pianist and flutist, she frequently took her three children to concerts and museums and made music a vibrant part of their lives.
Sadly, a malignant fibroid tumor took Mrs. Lans’ life when she was just 50. However, her family is keeping her love of music alive: They established the Joan Lans Endowed Scholarship Fund to provide annual awards to DMU’s osteopathic medical students with financial need and a demonstrated interest and/or involvement in music.
“It’s nice to be able to support DMU students in my mother’s memory,” says David, a rheumatologist and integrative medicine practitioner in New Rochelle, NY. He and his father have been consistent donors to DMU for years.
Like David Lans, a recent recipient of the Lans Scholarship, Allison Smith, D.O.’18, is the child of a physician. While she earned her bachelor’s degree in vocal performance at the University of Colorado-Boulder, she says medicine was always a career path she considered. She drew from her musical background and Giuseppe Verdi’s opera “La Traviata” for her personal statement in her medical school application.
“The main character, Violetta, is dying of tuberculosis when her doctor comes to comfort her and talk to her loved ones,” Smith explains. “It’s very dramatic. I reflected on seeing the scene from the doctor’s perspective.”
Smith is grateful to the Lans family for their scholarship support. “It makes such a huge difference – not just the financial aspect, but knowing someone is there supporting you is so cool,” she says. “I would love to do that someday.”