The Texas County Memorial Hospital Healthcare Foundation awarded ,000 in scholarships to area students. Pictured at the check presentation are, from left: Wes Murray, TCMH chief executive officer; John Sawyer; Kalli Pruett; Cameron Kuhn; Emily Smith; Andrea Turner; Shelby Brown; Haley Kelly and Joshua Kane; and Jay Gentry, TCMH Healthcare Foundation director. 

The Texas County Memorial Hospital Healthcare Foundation has awarded $8,000 in scholarships to area students to assist with their educational costs for the fall school semester.

Four students –– Joshua Kane and Kalli Pruett of Houston, Cameron Kuhn of Salem and Emily Smith of Licking ––received $1,000 scholarships from the foundation. The endowed Dr. Joe L. and Judith T. Spears Memorial Scholarship Fund awarded three $1,000 scholarships to Shelby Brown and Haley Kelley of Cabool and John Sawyer of Houston. Andrea Turner of Success received the $1,000 Dr. Eugene Charles Honeywell Memorial Scholarship, chosen by the foundation directors and Carol Honeywell, the widow of Dr. Eugene Honeywell.

“Educational scholarships are one of the focus areas of the TCMH Healthcare Foundation,” said Jay Gentry, foundation director. 

Kane is in the paramedic training program at South Howell County Ambulance District in West Plains. He is employed as an emergency medical technician in the emergency medical services department at TCMH.

Pruett is in the licensed practical nursing program at Texas County Technical College in Houston. She is also an aide for TCMH Home Health of the Ozarks.

Kuhn graduated from Salem High School in May 2014.  She is attending Ozarks Technical Community College in Springfield and plans to pursue training as a physical therapy assistant.

Smith graduated from Licking High School in May 2014. She is attending College of the Ozarks, where she plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in nursing.

Brown is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing through Drury University/Cox College of Nursing in Cabool. She works as a certified nurse assistant in the obstetrics and home health departments at TCMH. 

Kelley is a student in the radiologic technologist program at Rolla Technical Center. She works as a student technologist in the TCMH radiology department.

Sawyer is attending Cox College of Nursing in Springfield, where he is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Sawyer is a registered nurse and night supervisor at TCMH.

Turner is pursuing an accelerated licensed practical nurse to registered nurse degree at Texas County Technical College. She works as a nurse at TCMH Hospice of Care.

The foundation holds an annual golf tournament to raise funds for educational scholarships for area students. The foundation also received $2,500 in matching funds from Healthcare Services Group Foundation (HSGCF) that were added to the funds awarded by the foundation for the fall 2014.

The HSGCF program provides matching financial assistance to students awarded financial assistance by hospitals that are members of the Healthcare Services Association and insured by the Missouri Hospital Plan. Specifically, HSGCF matches scholarships or healthcare related tuition reimbursement provided by non-profit member hospitals throughout Missouri. This scholarship program is designed to facilitate, attract and retain healthcare providers in Missouri.

“The matching funds from HSGCF enabled us to boost the amount of our fall scholarship,” Gentry said. “Every dollar helps these area students with their educational costs, and we’re grateful for the additional funds to award.”

The foundation awards educational scholarships for students pursuing additional higher education each spring and fall.  With the recent scholarship awards, the foundation has awarded $56,000 in scholarships to area students since the program began in 2007.

“The healthcare foundation administers the scholarships for the endowed funds, and the scholarships also go to employees working in healthcare-related fields in Texas County and surrounding areas,” Gentry said. 

Members of both families provided input to the foundation in choosing the scholarship recipients.

Gentry said 25 area students applied for the foundation scholarship for fall 2014.

“We had a lot of great applicants, and we hope that those that did not receive a scholarship this time will apply for a scholarship in the future,” Gentry said.

According to Gentry, the foundation intends to award two more $1,000 scholarships before the spring school semester in 2015. Applications for the scholarships are available through the foundation or on the TCMH website. 

 “The foundation board of directors recognizes the growing need for healthcare providers in rural America,” Gentry said. “It is the hope of the foundation that these scholarships will assist in attracting and retaining qualified residents to work in the local healthcare fields.”

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