For DonorsFor Applicants

Bulchand and Laxmi Motwani Memorial Scholarship

Funded by
Picture of the donor
Motwani Family
1st winner$2,119
2nd winner$2,117
3rd winner$2,117
Application Deadline
Apr 30, 2024
Winners Announced
May 31, 2024
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school, undergraduate, or graduate student
Non-profit or volunteering experience
Field of Study:
Pharmacy (including science)
Minority (immigrants and children of immigrants preferred)

The Bulchand & Laxmi Motwani Memorial Scholarship commemorates the lives of the late Bulchand G. Motwani and his beloved wife, Laxmi Motwani. Together, as teenagers with their young children, they courageously fled religious persecution, seeking safety and a better future. After establishing a successful pharmaceutical business in India, they relocated their family to America, driven by the pursuit of greater opportunities. They left behind a remarkable legacy that extends to their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

This scholarship aims to honor the enduring spirit of the late Bulchand and Laxmi Motwani, their unwavering commitment to education, service, and entrepreneurship.

It is open to high school, undergraduate, and graduate students pursuing a career in pharmacy or science. While all qualified candidates are encouraged to apply, individuals from immigrant backgrounds and those who have overcome significant challenges are particularly welcomed. Applicants are invited to share their personal stories of triumph over adversity.

Describe a significant obstacle you have faced, the strategies you employed to overcome it, and how this experience has inspired your pursuit of a career in pharmacy. Additionally, highlight your commitment to community service and volunteering. Share any impactful non-profit or volunteering experiences that demonstrate your dedication to making a positive impact in the lives of others.

Through the Bulchand and Laxmi Motwani Memorial Scholarship, we aim to honor the enduring spirit of the late Bulchand and Laxmi Motwani, their unwavering commitment to education, service, and entrepreneurship.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Drive, Passion
Published January 5, 2024
Essay Topic

Overcoming Adversity: Discuss a significant challenge or obstacle you have faced in your life and how you have overcome it. Explain the impact of this experience on your personal growth, resilience, and determination to succeed in your pursuit of a career in pharmacy. 

400–600 words

Winning Applications

Aymen Hadji
St. Louis College of PharmacyBallwin, MO
My journey towards a pharmacy career and desire to serve in rural or medically underserved areas has been influenced by several key life experiences. These experiences have ingrained in me a profound sense of desire and commitment to serve communities that often lack access to quality healthcare through the challenges I faced. I grew up in a small town called Kuttawa, in rural western Kentucky. I witnessed firsthand the challenges we faced in accessing healthcare services. We traveled long distances to reach the closest pharmacy or healthcare facility. In fact, for major health issues, we had to travel to Nashville, Tennessee which was over one hour and a half drive. This shortage of accessibility to healthcare professionals caused many people in Kuttawa to sometimes be without needed medications or proper medical advice, leading to health complications and unnecessary suffering. As I matured, I became more aware of pharmacists' important role in patient care and community services. This realization was an eye-opener because I saw an opportunity to help fill the healthcare gap in rural and medically underserved communities. I am excited to be enrolled in the pharmacy program and pursuing my career dream which will help me contribute to the well-being of underserved populations. For example, working as a Pharmacy Technician at Walgreens was the first experience that helped me achieve my goal of becoming a pharmacist. I enjoy filling out patient prescriptions, speaking to patients, and providing their medications. In addition, I had opportunities to expand my pharmacy experiences. For instance, I took the initiative to apply for immunization training to help the pharmacist manager administer vaccines before the flu season since most of my coworkers, who had worked longer, were not certified in vaccine administration. With the help of my supervisor and pharmacy manager, I passed the immunization exam and became certified. I feel grateful to complete a crucial step to becoming a pharmacist and helping rural communities access various services. I volunteered at Variety, a Children's Charity in St. Louis. I got to help special-needs kids gain a life-long fun and entertaining experience. I met a child who used a wheelchair and dreamed of becoming a wrestler and police officer. Unfortunately, his disability meant they rarely had an opportunity to visit and enjoy the wonders he hoped to see. I was able to give that opportunity to him by taking him to parks, zoos, centers relating to nature and scientific studies, and movies. I was astonished to see his smile grow into one of the biggest I have ever seen. My kindness and service to the young boy allowed me to experience a similar feeling a pharmacist feels when they improve patients' quality of life: gratification. Bringing joy and warm memories made me feel more connected to the rural communities and the challenges of getting decent healthcare services. It drove my commitment to making a difference in underserved populations. It is part of my personal values and beliefs that healthcare is a fundamental human right regardless of economic or geographic location. This strong conviction and my personal experiences have fueled my determination to serve those in need, particularly in rural areas where healthcare disparities are most pronounced and overlooked by the healthcare system. I aspire to contribute to the well-being of underserved populations, ensuring that they receive the care and support they deserve.
Norma Solis-Mendoza
The University of FindlayCincinnati, OH
On September 22, 2020, I attempted to end my life. It was COVID year, I had no friends, I learned remotely so I had little human interaction. I was severely depressed, so depressed that any little thing would set me off, I was a bomb waiting to explode. That Tuesday I was home with my little brother and my depression was at its peak. I’ve always been an unhappy person but during that time I was beyond depressed. I had been secluded from people for so long that I no longer felt any real emotion. I didn't have the energy to wake up every day and eat, I didn’t even have enough energy to leave my bed or use the restroom. So when my manic mother angrly entered my house, she unleashed a chain of events that would change my life forever. As much as I hate it, my mother and I are extremely similar. Both of us are insane, we struggle in managing our emotions, we tend to unleash our emotions on people who don’t deserve it, and when we get depressed it's really hard for us to pick ourselves back up. That day was one of those days my mother chose to unleash her emotions on me. She began yelling that lead me to have a panic attack in the middle of the argument and all my mother did was mock me. “You're crazy, I don’t know how anyone could love you.” When my mom finally left my room I panicked. My heart was racing, my head spinning. I began to hold my cat because I felt like he was the only one who loved me. I sat by my door and I began to chug pill after pill. After a while I began to feel my heart slow down, my body was weak, I was dying. I remember my sister finding me and dragging me into my bathroom forcing me to throw up. All I could think was, “how did you get caught.” I was eventually taken to a psychiatric center where I spent one week bettering myself. There I learned how to cope with my emotions and to never allow myself to fall that low again, I grew. During my time their my pharmacist helped me take my antidepressants every day. She held my hand and kept me safe. I’ve never been the smartest person in any room, I’ve never believed I would ever become anything great but now that I’ve grown, I have goals. I want a future and I want to live, I want to make myself proud. I want to be a psychiatric pharmacist and hold someone's hand telling them everything will be okay. Since that day I’ve started researching, and taking the classes I need to become a pharmacist. My motivation has increased greatly, I have so much passion, and I really want to help others the way I was helped. My AP chemistry teacher, Lonnie Dusch has been a great motivator and has inspired me. Thanks to him I have a love for chemistry. I’ve always taken “difficult” classes and although they can be really tough at times I enjoy learning. The dream of becoming a pharmacist has helped me from falling again. The more I research about different programs and areas of pharmacy the more I become intrigued by what pharmacy has to offer me. I know in my heart that I will eventually become a pharmacist. I know a long journey awaits me but I'm dedicated, and I won't give up. I have too much to fight for.
Giselle Martinez
University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical CampusHIALEAH, FL
My journey towards a career in pharmacy has been profoundly shaped by a recent near-death experience, a catalyst that strengthened my commitment to making a meaningful impact on others through healthcare. From a young age, I grappled with severe menstrual pains, setting me on a perplexing medical journey that brought to light disparities in the healthcare system, particularly for women and individuals from underrepresented immigrant communities like mine. The recurrence of my menstrual symptoms led me through numerous medical consultations, where my concerns were callously dismissed as "normal." An eight-day ordeal marked by incapacitating cramping, severe gastric distress, and bouts of emesis during my monthly menses left me questioning whether these symptoms were genuinely normal. Seeking second opinions only led to further dismissals, often attributing my symptoms to psychosomatic causes such as anxiety, intensifying the challenges faced by a Hispanic woman seeking validation from predominantly white male doctors. The frustration mounted with each brief consultation, where my genuine concerns were trivialized while the bills piled up, was exacerbated by my lack of health insurance, which hindered my access to comprehensive medical care. Years of relentless invalidation and gaslighting from medical professionals compelled me to turn to home remedies for my menstrual troubles, relying on over-the-counter painkillers to navigate my days running a baking business. It wasn't until I contracted COVID-19 that my abnormal symptoms, previously normalized, became genuinely alarming. Severe blood clotting that extended my eight-day menses to 36 days prompted me, at my mother's urging, to seek the advice of a new gynecologist. My expectations of receiving a proper diagnosis were low based on past experiences with white male physicians. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find a healthcare professional who not only listened attentively but also took swift action—uncovering severe anemia and grapefruit-sized tumors through diagnostic tests. Emergency surgery and blood transfusions followed, prompting a rapid three-day preparation for the life-saving procedures. As I lay on the stretcher being wheeled towards the operating room, a stark realization hit me – this ordeal could have been prevented with a healthcare provider who listened rather than dismissed my initial concerns. My recovery prompted introspection, sparking a determination to be an advocate for other BIPOC women facing similar challenges. Through this near-death experience, I am inspired to channel my journey into a career addressing root causes, interventions, and broader societal implications of health disparities in women's health – with a greater emphasis on immigrant and minority women's health. By pursuing a career as a pharmacist, I aim to be at the forefront of medical advancements related to fibroids and uterine cancer, serving as a liaison for BIPOC women and bridging the gap between medical progress and socioeconomic issues. In conclusion, my voyage from medical adversity to recovery fuels my passion for pharmacy, aligning seamlessly with the Bulchand and Laxmi Motwani Memorial Scholarship goals. As a BIPOC woman from a medically underserved immigrant community and a former patient with no health insurance coverage, I am committed to utilizing my skills and experiences to address healthcare disparities, fostering a more inclusive and effective approach to medical solutions for medically underrepresented immigrant communities of color.
Edward Trejo
The University of Texas at El PasoEl Paso, TX
My existence as a low-income minority child was riddled with difficulties from an early age. However, the most important obstacle I endured was the death of my loving father when I was 14, just before starting high school. This horrific loss put me in a state of mourning and changed my outlook on life. Furthermore, my ambitions of becoming a pharmacist looked out of reach owing to severe self-doubt about my ability. In this article, I will describe my path of overcoming adversity, how I overcame self-doubt to follow my dream of becoming a pharmacist, and how my experiences as a low-income minority impacted my resilience. My father's death at a young age was a watershed point in my life. The gap created by their absence was immense, and it had a significant impact on my mental well-being. For a long time, I felt alienated and struggled to cope with the crushing pain, to the point that I considered dropping out of school. Furthermore, while my mother fought to make ends meet, our family experienced financial uncertainty, making our situation much more difficult. My sister was distraught, and my niece was just six years old at the time. Despite these difficulties, I recognized that I needed to be strong not just for myself, but also for my family. This event taught me the value of resilience and adaptation and prepared me for the challenges that lay ahead. Following the incident, I had a strong desire to work in healthcare, primarily in pharmacy. However, because I was low-income, I frequently felt like an outsider in the medical industry. My lack of experience and money made me doubt my ability and credentials. I was tormented by feelings of inadequacy, and I frequently questioned if I had what it required to thrive in the cutthroat world of pharmacy or what alternative jobs I might pursue. This self-doubt formed a roadblock between me and my goals, slowing my development. I didn't believe myself to be intelligent or skilled, but others did. Despite my self-doubt, I refused to let it define or govern my destiny since my niece influenced me much because she regarded me as her role model. I began looking for ways to get pharmacy experience, such as volunteering at local clinics and shadowing pharmacists, but I was unable to find any at the time. I still went to university and graduated with honors with a B.S. in Cellular and Molecular Biochemistry. I was surrounded by wonderful instructors who not only pushed me to apply to pharmacy school but also to work in their research laboratories. I grew to trust myself more and more, and finding the world of biochemistry inspired me to go to graduate school. I applied and got accepted into the School of Pharmacy with a total seat capacity of 65. My access to great education, resources, and opportunities was frequently hampered by financial restrictions. My community on the Borderlands is on the lower of healthcare access. I want to become a healthcare professional in my community to give back to them because they helped me in my time of need and I want to do theirs in the future. It is my way of helping those and giving back to the place that raised me. My experience shows that difficulty does not define us; rather, it motivates us to become stronger and more resilient versions of ourselves. As I continue my pharmaceutical career, I am dedicated to breaking down barriers, advocating for others, and making a difference in the lives of individuals who experience similar obstacles.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Apr 30, 2024. Winners will be announced on May 31, 2024.

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