In 2021, OMEF launched a new scholarship that recognizes student leaders who go above and beyond for their communities. Meet the seven recipients of this inaugural award and learn how they are changing the world of medicine for the better.
We are facing a severe physician and physician assistant shortage. Every one of us will feel its impact, but it is especially urgent for the thousands of Oregonians living in rural and underserved communities who already struggle with access. While advances in telemedicine and physician networks are helpful, demand will only increase as our population ages. We need more doctors and PAs.
To combat systemic inequities, initiatives aimed at increasing diversity and improving cultural competency within the profession must be a priority. The cost of a medical education has more than tripled in the last 40 years, and the average $200,000 student loan debt is a major deterrent for many prospective students, especially those from communities of color and who are underrepresented in medicine. The Oregon Medical Education Foundation (OMEF) Scholarship Funds help these students see a path to affordability and provides a network of support at every step.
OMEF exists to support students and help them do their best. Oregon’s MD, DO & PA students are among our most precious resources, and we believe that there is no better investment than in them, the future of medicine. In addition to our scholarships, our grant program supports community efforts to prioritize student wellness, diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, public health education and more.
OMEF Scholarships = Hardship relief
Hungry for help – you may be surprised to learn that 40% of these students in Oregon are experiencing food insecurity. The pandemic has amplified hunger and other issues, but sadly even in a normal year this is the reality.
Students also use their OMEF awards to help secure COVID-safe housing during remote rotations, reduce their overall student loan burden and invest in tools enabling them to fully participate in online learning.
OMEF Scholarship Fund celebrates 10 years of helping students
Since 2012, OMEF has awarded more than $550,000 in scholarships to over 300 local students. Awards range from $250 to $1,000 and winners are announced at our annual Future of Medicine Awards event.
This year, in celebration of OMEF’s 60th anniversary, has launched a new, multi-year scholarship that will not only include financial support but also provide valuable 1:1 connections with prominent healthcare leaders. Please contact Julie Davidson, Executive Director, for more information.
Please consider a gift to the OMEF today in support of these vitally important programs. You may designate your gift to one of our Scholarship Funds or our Community Grant program. Your donation will be put to immediate use and bring urgently needed relief to these hard-working individuals.
“My inspiration to pursue medicine originates from my personal challenges with the healthcare system.
Early on in my childhood, I experienced healthcare disparity as an underrepresented minority living in a low-socioeconomic household.
I realized early on that patients were not getting the best care due to the lack of diversity of doctors and language barriers.
I pursued higher education to be a solution to this issue and serve my community.”
--Angel Dolores, COMP Northwest student and OMEF Scholarship recipient