Scholar Spotlight

Anamaria Uceda

Name: Anamaria Uceda
Scholarship Received: AMA Physicians of Tomorrow Scholarship
Hometown: Roswell, GA
Undergraduate Institution: Georgia Tech
How did you learn about this scholarship: Internet search
How much time did you spend putting together your scholarship application/What was the process like to complete: It took me a total of about 4 hours, longest part was personal statement. Overall much shorter process than I would expect for such a large sum of money!
How are the scholarship funds going to help you: 10k towards paying for medical school!


 

Ayana Graham

Name: Ayana Graham
Scholarship Received: National Health Service Corps Scholarship
Hometown: Fayetteville, GA
Undergraduate Institution: Mercer University 
How did you learn about this scholarship: I knew that my Community Medicine advisor was a NHSC scholarship program participant and I came across the scholarship deadline during an online scholarship search.  I inquired about the process and whether I would be a good candidate. I decided to apply since it seemed to fit what I was looking for.

How much time did you spend putting together your scholarship application/What was the process like to complete: I had some of the components already (a resume and CV, transcript, and possible physicians to approach for letters of recommendation), so that helped. I would say I spent between 1-2 intense weeks on the application process since the deadline was in early May and we had just finished 2nd year finals when I came across the scholarship. There were 3 required essays that consumed the most time and energy, because I really wanted to communicate my intentions as a future physician and how my experiences have motivated them. I spent significant time revisiting those essays with fresh eyes to make certain I was conveying my passions and commitments concisely (and with proper grammar). Other than that, I tried to give my letter writers sufficient time and information to get the required documents uploaded to my application. Everyone was extremely helpful and timely, because they truly do care that we have a real chance at receiving scholarships. In mid-August, I was informed that I was a finalist and had to submit a signed contract officially committing myself to serving in a qualifying underserved area for the required amount of time in the event that I was selected for the scholarship. The hardest part of the process was waiting, but Step 1 and the beginning of third year helped by keeping me busy.
How are the scholarship funds going to help you: This scholarship takes some weight off of my shoulders in that I will be less concerned with finances and debt accumulation as I finish tackling medical school.  Additionally, the National Health Service Corp (NHSC) will help me find the right place to serve the populations that I entered medical school with the intentions of serving upon becoming a physician, and I am immensely excited about that. 

Shayla AmosName: Shayla Amos
Scholarship Received: Military Health Professions Scholarship Program
Hometown: Flowery Branch, GA
Undergraduate Institution: University of North Georgia
How did you learn about this scholarship: I come from an Army family, so I reached out to a recruiter to get more information about the program.
How much time did you spend putting together your scholarship application/What was the process like to complete:I spent about 2 weeks getting my application together, getting a slot to go to MEPS (where I completed my physical) took about a month, and then waiting for the board decision and commission was the longest wait. All together, it was about a 9 month process from the time I met with my recruiter to the day I commissioned. 
How are the scholarship funds going to help you: They are covering 100% of my tuition and fees, awarded me a signing bonus, and give me a monthly stipend for housing, etc. It has relieved an enormous amount of stress.

Christie Savas

Name: Christie Savas 
Scholarship Received: Multiple scholarships from community organizations
Hometown:  Atlanta, GA
Undergraduate Institution: Georgia Tech
How did you learn about these scholarships: I used any resources I could find! Mercer Financial Aid publishes a list of outside scholarships that students apply for, so I used that as one resource. I was also aware of various educational foundations started by my local and national church communities. Finally, I spent a lot of time searching online for medically related scholarships that looked like they might apply to me. This route was less fruitful but definitely worth a try.

How much time did you spend putting together your scholarship applications/What was the process like to complete:  It depends on the application. Some scholarship applications are very short, while others took a significant amount of effort to fill out. Most require their own unique set of essays. I spent several hours a week initially researching and then applying to 10+ scholarships overall.  I started very early in the process in order to spread out the work.  Many deadlines are in late spring, but some deadlines are in February, so I think it is important to start researching over winter break. It was definitely a time consuming process but well worth the work in the end.

How are the scholarship funds going to help you: These funds are going to reduce my overall cost of Medical School and will reduce my interest payments along the way.  The financial relief will help set my mind at ease during school so that I am not constantly concerned about money.  When I complete medical school, I will be able to pay my debt off faster which will help me be a better physician by focusing on the things that are important for my patients.

Parth Desai

Name: Parth Desai
Scholarship Received: McAfee Vision and Leader Scholarship
Hometown: Columbus, GA
Undergraduate Institution: University of Georgia
How did you learn about this scholarship: The dean of our campus suggested that I may qualify for the scholarship due to the success of my healthcare non-profit organization.
How much time did you spend putting together your scholarship application/What was the process like to complete: The written process took only a couple of days with maybe an hour or two per day. The application involved writing about qualifications for the scholarship, followed by selection for a formal interview with some of the incredibly generous members of the McAfee family.
How are the scholarship funds going to help you: The scholarship funds were hugely beneficial to me and allowed me to fund a research year between my 3rd and 4th year of medical school. I was able to move to New York City for 10 months and start an artificial intelligence based software company for orthopaedic surgical innovation. I am now in my senior year of medical school and this has helped me tremendously as I apply for residency.