Four Ohio high school seniors are winners of the BioOhio Scholarship, designed to encourage and advance bioscience-related education and career interests in Ohio. BioOhio is a non-profit organization charged with accelerating bioscience business, research, and education opportunities throughout the state.
The four recipients of the non-renewable $1,250 scholarships are:
- Karen Kruzer, West Geauga High School, Chesterland, Ohio. Karen will attend Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.
- Christine Fung, Beavercreek High School, Beavercreek, Ohio. Christine will attend The Ohio State University.
- Molly Mollica, Athens High School, Athens, Ohio. Molly will attend The Ohio State University.
- Michael Vawter, Edison Academy (home school), Westerville, Ohio. Michael will attend Denison University in Granville, Ohio.
To be considered for a scholarship, the student must live in Ohio, be a senior or senior-equivalent in good standing, and plan to pursue bioscience-related studies at an Ohio college. Application evaluations emphasized letters of recommendation and an essay on how the students could contribute to BioOhio’s mission.
In his essay, Michael Vawter wrote, “I plan to spend the next four years studying biochemistry and doing research, and after that I want to pursue a PhD in neuroscience.” Karen Kruzer concluded her essay by stating she was “ready to roll up my sleeves to improve the quality of life in Ohio through improving medicine and health.” Christine Fung wrote that she will “work to establish Ohio as a thriving place that is friendly to science companies.” Molly Mollica predicted, “Whether I will engineer tissues, design improved prosthetic legs, create new medical devices, or something else, my commitment will drive me to make a difference.”
BioOhio established the BioOhio Scholarship Fund in October 2009 with $15,000. BioOhio’s contribution will be divided equally over the first three years of the scholarship fund, with plans on sustaining and increasing the fund through private, tax-deductible donations.
According to BioOhio Corporate Communications Director Matt Schutte, nearly 200 applications were received.
“We were extremely pleased with the response, especially in the first year,” said Schutte. “And after seeing the quality of the applications, we quickly realized that Ohio’s bioscience future is in very good hands.”
BioOhio (formerly Omeris) is a non-profit organization supported by the Thomas Edison Program of the Ohio Department of Development. Its mission is to accelerate bioscience discovery, innovation and commercialization of global value, driving economic growth, and improving quality of life in Ohio. BioOhio is headquartered in Columbus, with regional business development affiliates in Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Athens.