What is it?

The John F. Beard Award is intended to honor the highest ideals and achievements in compassionate health care service to Wellstar MCG Health, to foster and encourage habits of compassion and kindness, and to identify someone who has unselfishly given to patients, patients' families, and demonstrated compassion in the Augusta University/Wellstar MCG Health community.

Who is eligible?

The $40,000 award is designed for graduating students during the academic year, in either the fall or spring semester, from the College of Allied Health Sciences, Medical College of Georgia, College of Nursing, The Graduate School, and post-baccalaureate students enrolled thereof. See criteria for additional guidelines.


This award is funded by Mr. and Mrs. William Porter "Billy" Payne. It memorializes Martha Payne's father and honors Augusta University President Emeritus Francis J. Tedesco and Dr. Mark F. Williams.

Students, faculty, and academic or hospital departments may nominate. Nomination forms should be used although nominators are encouraged to provide supplemental materials. A thorough nomination enhances the review of a candidate's merits. The Beard Award selection committee will consider each student nominated.

Want to nominate a student?

Nomination Form

Criteria for Nomination

The John F. Beard Award will be given to a graduating student who is considered to have performed significant, meritorious, and compassionate service to Wellstar MCG Health patients, patients' families, or the Augusta University/Wellstar MCG Health community without expectation of recognition or reward. The academic record of the nominees will not be considered.