Campus Life, News

UM first lady Felicia Knaul embraces campus

At Wednesday’s Hug the Lake event, Felicia Knaul embraced Lake Osceola and campus traditions alongside students, her husband, UM President-elect, Dr. Julio Frenk and President Donna E. Shalala.

Knaul is expected to join the faculty at the Miller School of Medicine. She will give a talk on Mexican reform, global cancer and global health at 3:30 p.m. tomorrow at the medical school. After that, she says, she will share where she will work.

“The idea is that I’m up for faculty review at the medical school and I believe I’ll be contributing to the Center for Hemispheric Policy here in the main campus,” Knaul said.

Knaul’s work with cancer includes a more personal backstory. About four years ago, she wrote a book titled “Tomatelo a Pecho” or “Beauty Without the Breast,” which focused on her experiences as a mother with cancer. She says the inspiration for her book came when she realized that this was an unforeseen threat for women in Mexico and that she saw a need for a book in Spanish that discussed personal experience with this disease.

She also noted that including Dr. Frenk and the family’s experience with her illness in her book was a way to help combat the fear of abandonment that some women face when seeking treatment. She says she wanted to show that a woman can make it through the disease and continue with her life.

“I thought that our story, particularly Julio’s story, would help to break down and fight against some of those taboos,” she said.

When faced with the challenge of coming up with an English title for her book, she says it was her daughter, Mariana, 10, who gave her the inspiration. The title “Tomatelo a Pecho” is a Spanish idiom and has no real translation in English, Knaul says.

The couple has two daughters, Hannah, 18 and Mariana. As a working mother, she notes that it can be difficult to juggle her work and home life but thinks it’s important for women and men to have a life where they are able to balance different roles.

“Societies, however, can do a lot to make that easier,” she said. “We need to promote education that has gender-equity built right into it.”

Knaul also mentioned that she is looking forward to bringing her family and two dogs, Tikvot and Lupi, on campus and to keeping a close connection to the UM community.

“I enjoy being able to speak to people,” she said. “A couple times I’ve gone down to the Starbucks and talked to people who are getting their coffee, which I like doing very much and hearing from the students and knowing a little bit more what they need.”

April 22, 2015

Reporters

Erika Glass

Multimedia Editor


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Thursday evening: ▪ UM coach Mark Richt has explained his decisi ...

The Miami Hurricanes had traveled half the field to start the second half when coach Mark Richt enco ...

Jeremiah Payton was one of those prospects the Miami Hurricanes coveted from just about the time he ...

The Miami Hurricanes’ secondary continues to get stronger. Miami, which already holds a pair of comm ...

Mark Richt said he’s spending the bye week evaluating everything about Miami’s offense, a process th ...

University of Miami changes program title of Women’s and Gender Studies to Gender and Sexuality Stud ...

Two families with deep ties to Miami—the Millers and Fains— celebrate two endowed faculty chair appo ...

A fabulous team of staff and volunteers labors long and hard, primed with school spirit, behind the ...

The University of Miami remembers alumnus Erik Hauri—the man who discovered water on the moon. ...

Through an innovative program, Miami Law students are empowering local high schoolers to think like ...

University of Miami head coach Gino DiMare released the Hurricanes' 2019 baseball schedule Thur ...

Senior Dew Weber of the University of Miami golf team continued to march towards her professional go ...

The University of Miami soccer team dropped its ACC road match against NC State, 1-0, Thursday night ...

The University of Miami men's tennis team will take part in the ITA Southeast Regional Champion ...

The University of Miami women's swimming & diving team returns to competition this weekend, ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.