UCI receives $1-million gift

Hazem and Salma Chehabi of Laguna Beach make the gift at the university’s Medal Ceremony.Dr. Hazem Chehabi and his wife, Salma, of Laguna Beach, have pledged a $1-million challenge grant to UC Irvine’s largest fundraising event, the UCI Medal Ceremony. Proceeds from the ceremony support key campus programs that benefit students, such as Regents’ Scholarships and graduate-student fellowships.

“Salma and I believe it is our responsibility to help provide educational opportunities for students who ultimately will become future community leaders,” Chehabi said.

The couple are lifetime members of the School of Medicine’s Health Science Partners and, in 2003, served on the UCI Medal Committee.

In 1991, Hazem Chehabi founded Newport Diagnostic Center, which provides state-of-the-art medical diagnostic imaging services in an outpatient setting. He is board-certified in nuclear medicine and serves as assistant clinical professor in UCI’s Department of Radiological Sciences.

Salma Chehabi earned a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from UCI in 1999. She recently returned to earn a second bachelor’s in psychology and social behavior. The Chehabis also are active in supporting local arts organizations, including the Performing Arts Center and the Pacific Symphony Orchestra.

The UCI Medal Ceremony and dinner to honor the recipients was hosted by the UCI Foundation on Oct. 15. More than 850 campus and community leaders attended the ceremony.