Rizing Tide, a foundation dedicated to creating a more racially diverse and inclusive physical therapy (PT) workforce, announces the second cohort of recipients for its Crest scholarship program. Five graduate students from underrepresented racial or ethnic backgrounds enrolled in U.S.-based Doctor of Physical Therapy programs were selected to receive full Crest scholarships to help further their education. Additionally, five Crest “Rizing Star” recipients were chosen to receive partial scholarships.

Each student with a full scholarship will receive up to $14,000 each to subsidize their tuition, room and board, books, and other fees for this school year with the opportunity to annually renew the scholarship until graduation. Each Rizing Star will receive up to $5,000 for the same purposes, also renewable annually. The scholarship recipients were selected by an esteemed panel of diverse healthcare and business professionals and awarded based on future impact potential, academic performance, personal character and conduct, leadership and other distinguished traits. 

“Rizing Tide was born out of a passion to fill the void of workforce diversity in the physical therapy profession. With more than 230 outstanding applications for this year’s Crest scholarship, the need for student support is clear,” said Dr. Heidi Jannenga, PT, DPT, ATC, founder of Rizing Tide. “Although the selection process was brutal, I am even more inspired and convinced that the future of the industry is bright. We are excited to add these remarkable scholars to the Rizing Tide community.”

The 2022 Rizing Tide Foundation Crest scholarship recipients include:

  • Zahraa Darwich, from Michigan, who is attending Wayne State University
  • Oliver Dario Artiga, from California, who is attending Northwestern University
  • Brittany Darnell Ballentine, from Maryland, who is attending University of Maryland
  • Fiorella Barreda, from North Carolina, who is attending Elon University
  • Mikaela Renae Holley, from Alabama, who is attending University of Alabama at Birmingham

The 2022 Rizing Tide Foundation Crest Rizing Star scholarship recipients include:

  • Liam Calvin Odesa Henson, from California, who is attending Samuel Merritt University
  • Maya Jones, from Alabama, who is attending University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Said Mendez, from Nebraska, who is attending Duke University
  • Erika Nicole Gonzalez, from Texas, who is attending Texas State University
  • Carolina Mahecha Millan, from Florida, who is attending Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University

“Narrowing down the finalists amongst so many qualified applicants was a gut-wrenching process for the selection committee, and while we are proud of the 10 recipients of the 2022 Crest scholarship, we are well aware that many of their fellow applicants were equally accomplished and hold similar promise as future physical therapists,” said Mia Gonzales Dean, selection committee member of Rizing Tide and the chief operating officer for DriQ Health Inc. “The Crest scholarship recipients are truly exceptional scholars and people, who have worked tirelessly, broken many barriers and against all odds have already made an impact on diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in the PT profession. We look forward to seeing all they will accomplish throughout their careers.”

The next Crest scholarship application process opens April 2023.

[Source(s): Rizing Tide, PR Newswire]