A small-town doctor honors her mentor, Nicholas Ward

Department news | November 30, 2023

Nicholas Ward, MD, a long-time faculty member and an outstanding teacher, inspired Joan “Mutt” Dickson, MD, during her medical training at UW to pursue mental health. With his encouragement, Dickson did a combined residency in family medicine and psychiatry at West Virginia University. She eventually brought her two passions together when she moved to Glendive, in eastern Montana, where she is in private solo practice as a general family practitioner and a psychiatrist — both of which the community desperately needed.

To honor the mentor who helped put her on the path to psychiatry, Dickson established the Nicholas Ward, MD, Endowed Scholarship to help medical students from Montana enter into what have historically been lower-paying specialties with less debt. Dr. Ward passed away in 2008 after a 10-year battle with Parkinson’s and dementia, but this endowed scholarship helps his legacy live on.

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