Maria Devens, beloved UIC Faculty from 2001 – 2013, lived with great passion, empathy, and insight. Highly valued by our faculty, staff, and trainees, Dr. Devens was an exceptional behavioral scientist, a gifted clinical psychologist, and, most importantly, a supportive friend and ally.
Dr. Devens was invaluable in the family medicine residency and in medical education. In her typical energetic fashion, Dr. Devens dedicated herself to improving relationships between doctors and patients through her work in the American Balint Society. She strove to create more robust support networks for physicians and encouraged more mindfulness in our workplace.
Dr. Devens favorite words were “joy” and “grace.” She sought joy and grace in all things and she brought them to many people. Dr. Devens lived a life of balance and helped us notice the beauty we might rush by and take for granted – whether it be a favorite color (purple was her choice), music (Baroque, and her beloved ‘80s), or a delicious, homemade dessert with a strong cup of tea.
Dr. Devens was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in January of 2010 at the age of 44. She fought the disease with her signature grace and style; even in the depths of her illness, Dr. Devens remained steadfastly herself: thoughtful and generous.
She assisted her colleagues, residents and students and took on new endeavors. Always the professional, she selflessly helped others even during her times of greatest need, and often reminded us to “embrace change” and appreciate what was good.
We learned so much from Dr. Maria Devens during her tenure at UIC and continue to celebrate her in our everyday activities. Although she has passed, Dr. Devens’ spirit and actions are unforgettable.
On September 16th, 2013 (Dr. Devens’ birthday), the Family Medicine Learning Center was dedicated to our beloved faculty member as the Maria Devens, PhD Family Medicine Learning Center.