Seven Cal Poly Scholars Receive $5,000 Scholarships from a Partnership Between Dignity Health and Cal Poly
SAN LUIS OBISPO — Seven Cal Poly students — including one from Paso Robles — were awarded renewable scholarships under a partnership between Dignity Health and the university’s Cal Poly Scholars program.
Under the arrangement, scholarships of $5,000 per year for up to five years were awarded to qualifying students seeking careers in the medical or health fields and who are majoring in biology, biochemistry, nutrition, kinesiology or business. This supplemental funding will offset some of the costs for tuition and housing while students pursue a bachelor’s degree.
The inaugural group of Dignity Health Scholars, all from the Golden State, were honored Feb. 7 at an on-campus reception. They include: Serena Cortez of Merifee; Valeria Diego of Sacramento; Jumeika Lopez-Arteaga of Seaside; Madelin Skinner of Santa Rosa; Byungcheol So of Torrance; Emmaline Voorheis of Paso Robles; and Rieanin Zamora of Long Beach. Four are studying nutrition, two are biochemistry majors and one is a biology major.
Voorheis is an 18-year-old freshman biology student. She graduated in 2018 from Paso Robles High School, where she was on the staff of the Crimson Newsmagazine for four years. She said she was honored to receive the scholarship that will aid her as she seeks a career in the field of medicine. She hopes to graduate in 2022.
Growing up in San Luis Obispo County, she said, she found Cal Poly was a natural fit. “Cal Poly has great science programs and puts a strong emphasis on undergraduate research and success, something that stood out amongst the other colleges I was considering as a senior in high school,” she said. “Professor accessibility is very helpful, especially in my more difficult chemistry and biology classes.”
On hand for the reception were university President Jeffrey D. Armstrong; Alan Iftiniuk, the president and CEO of Dignity Health’s French Hospital Medical Center; and Darryl Robinson, chief human resources officer at CommonSpirit Health.
Armstrong thanked the hospital chain for its generous donation “and for the opportunities it will provide.”
“We know that the resources our students receive from generous donors like Dignity Health make a profound impact on their educations and ultimately in their lives,” he said. “I am confident that these young people will go on to distinguish themselves and to become leaders in their respectful fields. That’s the power of a Learn by Doing education.”
The 7-year-old Cal Poly Scholars program supports high-achieving students from lower-income California households, providing them with competitive scholarship packages that include annual housing support and a technology credit at the university bookstore towards the purchase of a desktop, laptop or tablet. Students participate in proactive advising and a living/learning community to support their educational success.
Piloted in fall 2012 in the College of Engineering, the first cohort included 11 eligible partner high school graduates. The program expanded in 2014 and now spans across all six academic colleges. It continues to grow each year; this past September, Cal Poly increased the total number of students served to 260. Further significant expansion of the program is planned beginning in Fall 2019 through the Cal Poly Opportunity Fee.
About Dignity Health Central Coast
Dignity Health Central Coast is comprised of five award-winning hospitals, all recognized for their quality of care, safety and service, primary care offices, premier ambulatory surgery centers, technologically advanced imaging centers, outpatient services, and comprehensive home health services. Hospitals in the Dignity Health Central Coast region include Arroyo Grande Community Hospital in Arroyo Grande, French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria, St. John’s Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo, and St. John’s Regional Medical Center in Oxnard. Each hospital is supported by an active philanthropic foundation to provide additional funding to support new programs and services, as well as to advance the community’s access to health care. On Feb. 1, the merger between Dignity Health and Catholic Health Initiatives became effective. The two health care providers were rechristened as CommonSpirit Health. The new nonprofit Catholic health system is focused on advancing health for all people and serving communities with more than 700 care sites and 142 hospitals, as well as research programs, virtual care services, home health programs and living communities throughout 21 states. For more information, visit dignityhealth.org/centralcoast.
About Cal Poly
Founded in 1901 and part of the renowned California State University system since 1960, Cal Poly is a nationally ranked, four-year, comprehensive polytechnic public university located in San Luis Obispo, Calif. Known for its Learn by Doing approach, small class sizes and open access to expert faculty, Cal Poly is a distinctive learning community whose more than 21,000 academically motivated students enjoy an unrivaled hands-on educational experience that prepares them to lead successful personal and professional lives. For more information, visit www.calpoly.edu .
Photo information: DignityHealthScolars.jpg — Seven Cal Poly students received renewable scholarships under a partnership between Dignity Health and the university’s Cal Poly Scholars program in February. Front row, from left: Rieanin Zamora of Long Beach; Valeria Diego of Sacramento; Emmaline Voorheis of Paso Robles; and Jumeika Lopez-Arteaga of Seaside. Back row, from left: CommonSpirit Health Chief Human Resources Officer Darryl Robinson; Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong; student Byungcheol So of Torrance; and Alan Iftinuik, CEO of Dignity Health’s French Hospital Medical Center. Not shown are students Serena Cortez of Menifee; and Madelin Skinner of Santa Rosa.
Contact: Matt Lazier
March 14, 2019