Alvin Ring, MD, FASCP, Establishes ASCP Scholarship to Assist Future Medical Laboratory Professionals

By Susan Montgomery - April 08, 2024


Dr. Alvin Ring’s story as a scientist began early. As a fifth grader growing up in Detroit, MI, Alvin Ring, MD, FASCP, was so enthralled with his chemistry class that he set up his own “science lab” in the basement of his family home. “I drove my parents crazy with the smells and minor explosions,” he says, jokingly.

Now, the retired medical laboratory director is sharing his passion for science and education by establishing the Dr. Alvin Ring Empowerment Scholarship for Laboratory Professionals through the ASCP Foundation. Dr. Ring donated $100,000 to the ASCP Foundation to establish five scholarships to be given out annually to laboratory professionals who are seeking certification.

During this inaugural year of the scholarship, the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) will award an additional $50,000 in scholarships using funds through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.*

Applications for the scholarships are being accepted now through the end of May. Visit the ASCP Foundation web page at and click on Scholarships.

Giving back to the laboratory profession

Looking back on his career, Dr. Ring says that ASCP has always been an important part of his life. He has used its educational and teaching materials so that he and his staff stay current on information needed to practice, attended ASCP Annual Meetings, and volunteered. He served for many years on the editorial board of Laboratory Medicine, served on the ASCP Board of Certification (then the Board of Registry), and took part in inspecting medical laboratory science and histotechnology programs across the country. He also served as chair of the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences.

“My hope is that this scholarship will help address the medical laboratory workforce shortage,” he says. “There is a realm of career possibilities out there for young scientists to explore.”

The idea to establish a scholarship was inspired by his parents, who were philanthropically inclined. His children now carry on those same charitable endeavors.

“Pathology has been a great career for me,” he says, adding, “From my perspective, there is nothing that has a better work-life balance than being a pathologist. I now have the opportunity to assist others who are entering the profession. I have taught as long as I have been a laboratory director, and still teach pathology as a clinical professor to medical students at Florida Atlantic University."

Dr. Ring encourages younger pathologists and laboratory professionals to become involved in ASCP as their medical home. Dr. Ring also points out that ASCP is unique among medical societies in that it brings together both pathologists and laboratory professionals.

“There is symbiosis between pathologists and lab professionals; one could not exist without the other,” he says. “Those of us who have been laboratory directors, which I was for so many years, value the input and collaboration with lab professionals.”

Dr. Ring earned his Bachelor of Science from Wayne State University, in Michigan, and his medical degree from the University of Michigan. He attended pathology residency at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago and completed his training in New York. Early in his career, he was offered a position as a laboratory director at a 300-bed hospital in Chicago where the laboratory “needed lots of tender care. Only one of the laboratory staff members was ASCP certified,” Dr. Ring says. “I was given full reign and developed a teaching program for the laboratory staff, where everyone went on to become certified. The teaching program later evolved into a fully ASCP accredited laboratory school.”

Later, he joined Holy Cross Hospital in Chicago and became director of its medical technology school and histotechnology school. He also started the pathology residency program while there. From there, he went on to Silver Cross Hospital in Joliet, IL, where he served as director of its laboratory for 20 years. At this time, Dr. Ring was also a Clinical Professor of Pathology at the University of Illinois in Chicago.

He published numerous papers throughout his career, and he credits his wife, Cynthia, for typing the entire manuscript for one of his four books. Dr. Ring’s legacy continues to live on through his family, as one of his daughters, Dr. Melinda Ring, serves as the Director of the Osher Center for Integrative Health at Northwestern University.

To learn about the scholarship, visit the ASCP Foundation web page at and click on Scholarships.

If you’re interested in establishing a named fund or endowment for yourself, a loved one, or a mentor, please contact the ASCP Foundation at

*This opportunity was made possible, in part, by cooperative agreement NU47OE000107 from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC.

Susan Montgomery

ASCP communications writer