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Emma Jean Ridley Memorial Scholarship

2 winners, $500 each
Application Deadline
Jun 16, 2023
Winners Announced
Jul 16, 2023
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
African American
Low-income and first-generation college student
Medicine/Medical Field
3 or higher

Emma Jean Ridley was a kind person, who always supported her family and friends as they pursued their passions.

She gave encouragement to those earning their upper level education and always offered support to those in need. Her words of encouragement helped give those around her a boost of confidence that helped them achieve all they were capable of. The Emma Jean Ridley Memorial Scholarship will support African American undergraduate students who are earning a degree in an allied health profession, helping them reach their potential and continue to grow.

African American undergraduates are eligible to apply if they are first-generation college students who come from low-income families and have a 3.0 GPA. Students must be pursuing a career in a healthcare field to apply. In your application, write about how you plan to make a difference through your chosen career and how your personal journey has guided your choice to work in the medical field.

Selection Criteria:
Essay, Passion, Impact
Published February 11, 2023
Essay Topic

Tell us about yourself and how you plan to make a positive impact on the world through your profession. Why are you pursuing a career as a healthcare professional? How did you become interested in the profession? How will this scholarship help support your education?

400–600 words

Winning Applications

Kirsten Clark
Prairie View A & M UniversityArlington, TX
With a baby doll in my left hand and an artificial bottle in my right, I always knew nurturing was instilled into me. However, It wasn’t until I was 16 years old, witnessing my older sister give birth to my nephew that my passion for nursing was sparked. The nurses' delicate care during her challenging journey showed me the power of nursing. They provided comfort and support when she needed it most, creating a sense of assurance. This is what I believe is so special about nursing. Nurses get the privilege to share intimate moments and build connections with patients while advocating for their health through compassion and empathy. Seeing her vulnerability and the support she received during childbirth reaffirmed the nurturing and caring traits instilled in me from a young age. From that moment, I knew without a doubt that becoming a nurse was my purpose. This personal experience serves as a powerful motivation for me to pursue a career in nursing, with a special focus on labor and delivery. With that, the mission of my life is to inspire hope and contribute to the health and well-being of women through the art of nursing. For many generations, women have faced various disadvantages, including limited social and economic power, resulting in restricted access to essential needs like healthcare. By fulfilling my mission I plan to make a positive impact on the world by providing awareness and proper care to the disadvantages of women in the healthcare system. I aim to create a safe and supportive environment where women feel empowered, heard, and respected throughout their childbirth journey Ultimately, I aspire to contribute to reducing maternal and infant mortality rates, particularly among marginalized communities. I envision myself as being a reliable source of support, confident in my skills and abilities to provide care, and foremost, an advocate for the health and well-being of my patients when they cannot advocate for themselves. To fulfill this aspiration, I am dedicated to acquiring a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. Throughout my academic journey, I have strived for excellence, recognizing the importance of education in laying the foundation for my future career goals. In high school, I maintained a commendable 3.9 GPA while actively participating in extracurricular activities such as cheerleading and drill team, where I served as the Social Officer President during the 2020-2021 school year. Additionally, I was an engaged member of the National Honor Society and AVID. Continuing my educational path in college was a natural progression, as I believe higher education equips me with the necessary skills and knowledge to support my chosen career path. In the fall, as I embark on my junior year at Prairie View A&M University, I eagerly anticipate my enrollment in nursing school and look forward to immersing myself in the field that ignites my passion. In my collegiate journey, I have consistently demonstrated academic excellence, maintaining a 4.0 GPA. Alongside my academic pursuits, I have actively engaged with the Women of S.T.E.M organization, a community that celebrates and empowers women in science, technology, engineering, and math. All in all, receiving the Emma Jean Ridley Memorial Scholarship would be instrumental in supporting my educational journey. It would provide financial assistance and help alleviate the financial burden of tuition, textbooks, and other educational expenses. With the scholarship's support, I would be able to focus more on my studies and engage in valuable learning experiences. This scholarship would also empower me to further develop my skills and ultimately enable me to make a significant and positive impact in the field of nursing.
Jasmine Guy
Montgomery CollegeFort Washington, MD
In this life, we all have obstacles to overcome. It is not the challenges we face that define us but how we handle those obstacles and use them to lay the groundwork for our future success. Born and raised in southern Maryland, I have faced many challenges in life. One life challenge I encountered was during my years as a caregiver. I have always had a passion for nursing and prided myself on my ability to care for others. As a teenager, I helped my mother care for my grandmother at home during her final years. It was one of the most challenging yet rewarding experiences of my life. My mother taught me how to help bathe my grandmother, administer feedings through her feeding tube, change her wound bandages, clean her ostomy bags, take her blood pressure, take her temperature, and keep her comfortable. It was through this experience I decided to pursue a career in nursing. I plan to positively impact the world by using my nursing skills to spread compassion and empathy to everyone I encounter. I will simultaneously inspire people to show compassion toward others by showing that compassion. Paying it forward is how we evolve and become more empathetic and kinder to one another. When we show others empathy and compassion, we become the shining light in a world that can often seem so dark. In addition to promoting empathy and compassion, I plan to build a community that helps support caregivers and gives them the much-needed space to unwind and attend to their emotional and physical needs. I also want to build more respite care centers for caregivers to have a chance to live their lives, travel, and take care of their own needs while having peace of mind knowing that their loved ones are being properly taken care of with empathy and compassion. In Conclusion, receiving an Emma Jean Ridley Memorial Scholarship will help finance my school expenses and living conditions and aid in a successful career as a Pediatric Nurse. While in school, I work full-time as a Patient Care Technician at Children's Hospital. My responsibilities as a Patient Care Technician have reminded me of everything I did when caring for my grandmother. I love working at my med-surge Unit and have been inspired by my Unit's nurses to continue my education and become a Pediatric Nurse. The healthcare system has a shortage of nurses, and I am passionate about becoming a Pediatric Nurse to change the lives of children and their families and positively impact the world through my profession in nursing.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Jun 16, 2023. Winners will be announced on Jul 16, 2023.

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