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DKE Jefferson Scholarship

DKE Jefferson Scholarship – in Memory of David J. Magoon

The Initiative:

In early 2017, the alumni of Delta Kappa Epsilon at the University of Virginia launched a campaign to raise up to $1 million to endow a Jefferson Scholarship in memory of David Joseph Magoon, a DKE and Jefferson Scholar from the class of 2003. David tragically lost his life as a student at Harvard Medical School in 2006. Endowing a scholarship will provide a permanent source of funds in order for DKE to sponsor a Jefferson Scholar on a regular basis – around every four years. The Jefferson Scholarship is one of the most prestigious academic awards in the country today and attracts roughly 35 impressive students to Grounds each year who exemplify the qualities of Leadership, Scholarship, and Citizenship. David personified each of these esteemed qualities in his own memorable, charming style. He was studying to be one of the most influential physicians of his generation when his life ended far too early. The worthy and lasting endeavor to endow a Jefferson Scholarship in his memory will allow DKE to expand its leadership role in both the fraternity system and the University at large.

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David J. Magoon, 1981-2006

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David Magoon was born on August 2, 1981, the son of Drs. Elbert and Martha Magoon of North Canton, Ohio, and the second of four siblings. David was an outstanding student-athlete at Hoover High School, where he was nominated for a Jefferson Scholarship which ultimately led to his decision to attend the University of Virginia.

From his earliest days at UVA, David pursued a pre-medical curriculum with the plan of following in the footsteps of his parents, both of whom are physicians. Additionally, he took advantage of the flexibility afforded to him by the Jefferson and Echols Scholarships to form his own interdisciplinary curriculum within the highly selective Political & Social Thought Distinguished Majors program. David was actively involved in numerous University activities, including the Honor System, where he served as an Honor Adviser; the University Guide Service; and Madison House, where he was a Big Brother and also served on the Board of Directors. David pledged Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity, where he was an integral member of his class of seventeen pledge brothers, and a friend and mentor to both older and younger students throughout his years on the Grounds. As a result of his many contributions to UVA, David earned numerous academic awards, including Phi Beta Kappa, and was inducted into multiple societies, including the Raven Society, TILKA, and the IMP Society, where he served as King. During his fourth year, David lived on “Bachelors’ Row” in his room at 47 West Lawn.

After graduating from UVA in 2003, David took a year off to live in Valencia, Spain to pursue his love of travel and learn the Spanish language before enrolling at Harvard Medical School in the fall of 2004. At Harvard, David began to make an equally strong impact on the community as he had in high school and college. On July 7, 2006, David had just finished a summer internship rotation at Beth Israel Medical Center in Boston, and was spending an evening relaxing on his apartment’s rooftop in the Back Bay area. As he was returning inside, the fire escape used to access the roof gave way, and David tragically fell several stories to his death.

David’s memorial service in Ohio attracted more than 1,000 mourners, including dozens from the University of Virginia community. He is commonly remembered by his friends and family for his deep intellect, his large smile, his infectious enthusiasm and compassion, and his desire to always “Go Big”.

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