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Scholarship Results

2023 Family Focus Scholarship

1st Prize - Elyssa Feist - $1,500

As a college student with aspirations of attending medical school in the future, the impact that this scholarship would have on my life would be immeasurable. Pursuing a career in medicine is not only my passion but also my lifelong dream. However, the cost of education and training required to become a doctor can be a major financial burden. The scholarship would alleviate some of this burden and allow me to focus more on my studies and personal development, rather than stressing about how to pay for tuition and other expenses that come along.

Furthermore, attending medical school requires an immense amount of dedication and focus, and it can be challenging to balance academics with the financial demands of daily life. This scholarship would provide me with the opportunity to become more immersed in my studies. I could devote more of my time and energy to learning and developing my skills as a future healthcare provider.        

If given the opportunity to attend medical school, my goal is to practice emergency medicine and provide high-quality medical care to patients coming in needing services right away. I am deeply passionate about making a positive impact on the health and well-being of individuals and communities.        

Having some of my clinical experience near low-income communities, I have witnessed firsthand the challenges that individuals face when accessing healthcare. Many of the people I saw have struggled to receive adequate medical care due to a lack of resources, including access to affordable healthcare and health education. This experience inspired me to pursue a career in medicine and become and advocate for healthcare equity.      

As a future physician, I plan to use my skills and knowledge to serve disadvantaged communities by providing medical care and promoting health education. I hope to work with community-based organizations to develop and implement programs that address the unique health needs of underserved populations. Additionally, I aspire to participate in medical research at my university that focuses on addressing health disparities and improving health outcomes for all individuals.

Overall, receiving this scholarship would be life-changing for me as a college student and future medical student. It would enable me to achieve my academic and career goals, and ultimately make a positive impact on my community. I am committed to getting the most out of the knowledge I have gained and will gain in the future and will use it to dedicate my life to serving others, and I believe that this scholarship would provide me with the tools and resources to make a significant difference in the lives of those who need it most. 

Runner Up - Jaden Schovanec - $1,000

This generous scholarship would impact my immediate and long-term future in a meaningful way. This summer I will begin the Masters of Prosthetics and Orthotics program at Northwestern University. Becoming a prosthetist has been my dream for as long as I can remember. When considering my future career, the impact I could have on others was my top priority. I can think of nothing as personally rewarding like giving a patient the ability to walk again or go about their daily life free of pain. It also gives me the opportunity to help diverse groups of patients of every age, race, gender, and socioeconomic background. I have no doubt this is the career path I’m meant to follow. However, with the cost of education today, especially graduate programs, I’ll be faced with a significant financial burden for possibly decades to come.

Along with the rising cost of education, interest rates on student loans have skyrocketed in recent years. This means now more than ever, it’s crucial to reduce the principle amount of loans taken out by students pursuing higher education and in particular graduate degrees. Even a small amount of reduced principle now could save a great amount of money in the future by avoiding compounding interest. It’s not an exaggeration to say that this scholarship now could lessen my financial burden for many years to come.

After earning my master’s degree, and gaining the necessary professional skills and experience, I plan to one day start my own prosthetics and orthotics practice to best serve my community. Prosthetics is a relatively new and smaller market compared to others in the medical device field. Because of this, the industry is dominated by a few major companies that own most of the clinics in the country. However, I was fortunate enough to intern at a smaller prosthetic and orthotics clinic Limb Lab in Lincoln, NE. I witnessed countless positive relationships between my mentor and his patients; the true care and trust shared between each of them was evident. I strive to be equally impactful in my community and give back both through my profession and philanthropy.

In addition to my professional goals, which require a significant financial investment, I’m also beginning a personal adventure soon. This August, after my program begins, I’ll be getting married in Omaha. I’m excited and anxious to begin this new phase of life with my soon to be wife. It will be a great learning experience and adjustment for us both. She’s recently graduated from nursing school and has begun her career. After our wedding we’ll move to Chicago for a short time for my program. I supported us both financially while she finished her degree and now the roles will be reversed as I go back to school. We are both hard-working and committed to following our dreams and helping others. This scholarship would be invaluable in reducing my student loan debt and easing the financial burden on my fiancé and me.

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