For DonorsFor Applicants

Deena Collins Memorial Scholarship

Funded by
2 winners, $1,500 each
Application Deadline
Dec 5, 2024
Winners Announced
Jan 5, 2025
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
High school, undergraduate, or graduate student
Field of Study:
Healthcare (including mental health)
Kansas or Nebraska

Deena Collins was a beloved mother who sadly passed away in 2020.

Deena was a strong, resilient, and independent woman who touched the lives of everyone she encountered. Deena lived with her family in rural Nebraska, where there was limited access to women’s healthcare and mental health care, leaving many without the help they needed to thrive.

This scholarship aims to honor the life of Deena Collins by supporting women who are passionate about using their careers to help others.

Any female-identifying high school, undergraduate, or graduate student pursuing healthcare (including mental health) in Kansas or Nebraska with a 3.0 or above GPA may apply for this scholarship, but students planning to practice rurally are preferred.

To apply, tell us about yourself and how you plan to make a difference by supporting women in rural areas.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Drive, Impact
Published May 15, 2024
Essay Topic

Please tell us a bit about yourself and how you plan to make a positive impact on a rural area and support the women of rural areas.

400–600 words

Winning Application

Micah Meyer
University of KansasWichita, KS
In the middle of a frigid February night, I found myself ankle-deep in a creek, gripping the calving chain of a heifer in labor. It was calving season, and my dad and I were doing everything we could to assist this exhausted mother in delivering her first calf. As she pushed and I pulled, the crisp, cold air filled our lungs. Despite the discomfort, I knew that ensuring the safety of both mother and baby was paramount. Growing up on a beef cattle ranch in Kansas, I witnessed the challenges faced by my family and community in accessing quality healthcare. All of my mother’s pregnancies were high-risk with pre-eclampsia with significant edema and sepsis with chorioamnionitis; due to the lack of OB care in the area, she had to travel hours for every appointment, costing her time, increasing family burden, and causing unfamiliarity with the provider and birthplace of her children. The scarcity of specialty care, financial difficulties, and limited local healthcare services acted as barriers to continuous care in my community, leading to detrimental repercussions for patients. Witnessing the outcomes of these patients fueled my determination to become an obstetrician and provide high-risk OB care to patients who otherwise would not receive this until the time of delivery. Throughout my medical education, I pursued experiences that allowed me to serve rural communities and gain insights into their unique healthcare challenges. From volunteering at JayDoc, a free medical student-run clinic, to working in a rural clinic through STORM, an elective summer clinical experience that focuses on rural medicine, I have sought opportunities to address the immediate needs of these communities and develop a comprehensive understanding of their healthcare landscape. During my OBGYN clerkship, my passion for women's health and high-risk pregnancy care continued to develop. Guiding patients through difficult labor to safe deliveries, mastering the technical aspects of gynecologic surgery, and educating women on fundamental aspects of their health provided immense satisfaction. It continues to be evident that the practice I envision for my future will help address the disparities in access to care for rural women. I am eager to contribute to the field of obstetrics and gynecology, bridging the gap in access to quality care for underserved populations. Through compassionate and comprehensive care, I aim to make a lasting impact on the lives of women and their families, empowering them to navigate the transformative journey of pregnancy and ensuring the delivery of safe and healthy babies. The memory of that night, watching the heifer’s final push and subsequent birth of a healthy calf, has etched in my mind a constant reminder of the privilege it is to be entrusted with the care of both mother and baby. I am ready to embrace the challenges and rewards that lie ahead in my pursuit of becoming a skilled and compassionate OBGYN serving in rural, underserved areas.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Dec 5, 2024. Winners will be announced on Jan 5, 2025.