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6 medical students receive Mazzuchi scholarships

MARQUETTE — Six medical students from the Upper Peninsula Campus of Michigan State University College of Human Medicine were named recipients of the Mazzuchi Scholarship: Joshua Cole, Tyler Janish, Erin McKenzie, John Mroz, Natalie Thompson, and Jennifer Wickens.

Criteria for receiving the Mazzuchi Scholarship include student’s interest in practicing in the U.P., financial need, and specific interests within one of these specialties: emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, general surgery, hospitalist medicine, obstetrics/gynecology, pediatrics or psychiatry.

“Our goal is educate and train our future rural physicians,” said Director of Student Programs for U.P. Clinical Campus Susan Tincknell in a press release. “This scholarship is an excellent way to support students that have stated an interest in rural practice in the specialties we absolutely need.”

The scholarship fund, which began providing financial assistance to medical students in 1983, was renamed the Mazzuchi Scholarship in 2006 in honor of Dr. Daniel Mazzuchi, a local retired physician who has served many roles within medical education and healthcare.

Currently, Dr. Mazzuchi is a volunteer at Lake Superior Life Care and Hospice, and a board member of the Trillium House.

About these third-year medical student recipients:

≤ Joshua Cole, of Dorr, Michigan, graduated from Michigan State University, East Lansing, with a bachelor of science in mathematics.

“I chose MSU U.P. Campus for the hands-on learning, for the close relationships that I will build with the community, and all of the outdoors activities I can get my hands on,” he wrote.

≤ Tyler Janish, of Prescott, Michigan, received a bachelor of science in health sciences from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan.

“I chose the U.P. campus because of the hands-on experience, rural patient population, and my love for the outdoors,” he wrote.

≤ Erin McKenzie earned a bachelor of science in biology at Michigan Technological University near her hometown of Hancock.

She wrote, “I chose MSU College of Human Medicine U.P. Campus because of its unique ability to create excellent rural physicians that are well-equipped to serve the U.P. and other rural areas.”

≤ John Mroz of Cedar Springs, Michigan, graduated from Grand Valley State University, receiving a bachelor of science in biomedical studies.

“I wanted to experience practicing medicine in a rural setting,” he wrote, “I was born and raised in Cedar Springs, went to school in Grand Rapids and worked in a rural ED in Zeeland, Michigan, for three years during college. I greatly enjoyed working in a small community and chose the U.P. because I wanted more experience like that.”

≤ Natalie Thompson received a Bachelor of Science in microbiology from the University of Michigan. Her hometown is Gladstone.

She wrote, “I was raised in the U.P. and have experienced the barriers to accessing quality healthcare in a rural area both directly and indirectly, and I hope that by being educated in how to care for patients in a rural setting, I can someday return to the U.P. and address some of those barriers and serve the community that helped shape me.”

≤ Jennifer Wickens of Tustin, Michigan, earned a bachelor of science in biochemistry from Lake Superior State University.

“The MSU CHM U.P. Campus is a perfect fit for me because I love northern Michigan and I plan to practice in a rural setting after graduation,” she wrote. “This campus provides unique opportunities for hands-on learning, rural practice experience and wilderness emergency training.”

About Michigan State University College of Human Medicine Upper Peninsula Education Corporation: The MSU College of Human Medicine U.P. Education Corporation works in conjunction with U.P. Health System-Marquette to coordinate the training of family medicine and psychiatry residents and Michigan State University College of Human Medicine U.P. Campus medical students.

Since its inception in 1974, 310 medical students and 210 family physicians have graduated from these programs. Approximately 30 percent of these graduated learners are practicing in the Upper Peninsula.

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