Five Ohio high school seniors are winners of the 2011 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.
This year's five recipients of the non-renewable $1,300 scholarships are:
- Christina Ciccone from Pickerington High School North. Christina will attend Ohio Northern University.
- Antonio Ganios from Hoover High School in North Canton. Antonio will attend the University of Akron.
- Nicholas Kar from Shaker Heights High School. Nicholas will enroll at The Ohio State University.
- Hunter LeCorgne from St. Charles Preparatory School in Columbus. Hunter will attend The Ohio State University.
- Purva Patel from Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School. Purva will attend the University of Akron.
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 a bioscience-related degree at an Ohio college. Application evaluations emphasized letters of recommendation and an essay describing their interest in the bioscience field and how they will prepare for a bioscience career.
In her essay, Purva Patel credited her Cleveland Clinic Science Internship experiences for making her "aspirations of entering the biomedical field concrete." Nicholas Kar has been inspired by his grandfather's struggle with glaucoma, writing, "I plan on working in either a research lab or for a company that dedicates itself" to working on a cure for the disease. Christina Ciccone wrote that she is interested in "collaborating on research teams to develop new medications and exploring pharmacogenetics." Antonio Ganios commented that he is eager to begin biochemistry research since it is "the best way for one to prepare a career in the biosciences, because it is the interface between learning and discovery." Hunter LeCorgne shared his plan "to go into nerve studies and hopefully be able to cure paralysis."
BioOhio established the BioOhio Scholarship Fund in October 2009 with $15,000. This investment 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. In 2010 the scholarship fund received nearly $8,000 in private contributions, of which $6,000 came from Hinckley, Ohio-based Clinical RM and the company’s Making a Difference Initiative.
According to BioOhio Corporate Communications Director Matt Schutte, nearly 200 applications were received from throughout the state.
“Once again we were impressed by the statewide response and the overall outstanding quality of the applicants,” said Schutte. “We wish all of the applicants our best as they pursue their bioscience degrees, and we look forward to them joining our growing industry in a few years.”
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.