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News Release: Lakeland Health Foundations Award $100,000 in Scholarships and Grants

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June 17, 2019


(BERRIEN SPRINGS) – Through the Allied Health Careers Scholarship program, Lakeland Health Foundations awarded a total of $39,500 in the form of 34 scholarships to Lakeland team members and area students pursuing a career in health care. Another $60,500 will be awarded in department grants to support continuing education opportunities for Lakeland team members.


Over the past 25 years, Lakeland Health Foundations have awarded more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants to Lakeland team members, departments, and volunteers. This has been made possible largely through endowments from community members designed with the sole purpose of investing in healthcare education and training.

“This event is one we look forward to each year because it’s an opportunity to recognize many of our team members who are pursuing additional education and training which ultimately helps us take better care of our patients,” said Brandi Smith, Vice President of Philanthropy and President, Lakeland Health Foundations. “It’s also a wonderful way to continue to honor the legacies of our donors who’ve created the endowments by which we provide these scholarships.”

During the scholarship ceremony, Smith presented Brendon Beede, project manager, Information Technology and Barbara Schmidtman, PhD, manager, Radiation Oncology and Ambulatory Infusion, with the organization’s Leo Soorus Leadership Award to honor their unique collaboration on a virtual reality application for the infusion services at Spectrum Health Lakeland. While patients receive chemotherapy and other infusion services, they can use virtual reality to take them outside the clinical setting while helping relieve some of the current stresses of their situation.

The Leo Soorus Leadership Award and grant, developed through Lakeland Health Foundations, honors Soorus’ many contributions to southwest Michigan as a Lakeland executive and as a leader of multiple community and professional organizations.

Lakeland team members and area students (listed by their hometowns) who received scholarships through the Lakeland Health Foundations include:

Benton Harbor
Chloe Kalinas, The Victor Palenske Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship

Berrien Center
Teagan Bushouse, Allan & Vera Buckalew Memorial Nursing Scholarship
Stacey Layman, The G. Clemens Theisen Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship

Berrien Springs
Jodie Knuth, Whirlpool Foundation Nursing Scholarship
Frentzen Pakpahan, Lakeland Health Auxiliary Pawating Volunteer Scholarship
Jenna Wyant, Bill & Golda Madison Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship
Vicki Yarbro, Deborah Lynn Griffin Memorial Scholarship

Bridgman
Alexis Branch, The Victor Palenske Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship

Dowagiac
Keara Rankin, Muriel Huizenga Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship Endowment Fund

Eau Claire
Jennifer Lechman, The Joseph A. Wasserman Scholarship

Galien
Traci Payne, The Walter B. Laetz Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship

Kalamazoo
Haley Thibeault, Lakeland Family Scholarship

Niles
Hannah Albright, Niles College Scholarship
Hunter Bedell, Lakeland Family Scholarship
Joseph Hess, Lakeland Health Auxiliary Pawating Volunteer Scholarship
Allyson Hull, Frederick S. Upton Memorial Nursing Scholarship
Kennan Janowski, Lakeland Health Auxiliary Pawating Volunteer Scholarship
Chelsea Wagner, Muriel Huizenga Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship Endowment Fund
Crystal Watson, The William E. Johnson Scholarship

St. Joseph
Brendon Beede, Leo Soorus Award
Lauren Cook, Gen Starkey Volunteer Scholarship
Katheryn Eberhardt, Lakeland Health Auxiliary Volunteer Scholarship
Victoria Felton, Allan & Vera Buckalew Memorial Nursing Scholarship
Lauren Hokanson, Lakeland Health Auxiliary Volunteer Scholarship
Sara Kelley, Lucy Bel Mayer Memorial Nursing Scholarship
Barbara Schmidtman, Leo Soorus Award
Jordan Smith, Whirlpool Foundation Nursing Scholarship
Chelsea Wickensheiser, DO John Proos, MD Memorial Scholarship

Stevensville
Cierra Iverson, The Margaret L. Tufts Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship
Mikaela Lies, Lakeland Health Auxiliary Berrien General Volunteer Scholarship

Watervliet
Brett Thumm, Jack & Dorothy Thatcher Memorial Scholarship Endowment
Jenna Shafer, Ruth Frobel Memorial Nursing Scholarship

Granger, IN
Brody Deming, The Walter B. Laetz Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship

LaPorte, IN
Janie Kiester, Bill & Golda Madison Memorial Allied Health Careers Scholarship