The 1889 Foundation has a variety of scholarship funds that were established to support students pursuing a career in healthcare. In 2016, we were proud to present more than 50 awards totaling over $52,000 to deserving students in nursing and related fields.

One of these funds, the E.MAP/1889 Foundation Critical Skills Scholarship Endowment, was founded by the Employers Medical Access Partnership (E.MAP), a coalition of hundreds of employers in our region that works to obtain affordable healthcare plans for member businesses. The goal of the fund is simple – to encourage students who are pursuing a healthcare career to do so locally, and to hopefully start careers here.

“As a non-profit, E.MAP wants to establish a legacy – we want to help talented students in these professions, and hopefully inspire them to give back themselves once they’re established in careers,” says Jack Babich, president of E.MAP’s board of directors.

Since 2009, its first year, the fund has provided $1,000 to assist toward tuition for five students in a “critical skills” medical field – such as nursing – each year, totaling $39,000 in scholarship money to date. Recipients are also invited to a special annual awards dinner.

“The awards dinner helps us provide extra recognition to the students, but it also gives us an opportunity to talk to them,” Babich explains. “We want to understand why they decided to pursue a healthcare career.”

The 2016 recipients are:

  • Darin Frankofsky
  • Shari Mock
  • Katelyn Nicklow
  • Jessica Toth
  • McKenzie Yuko

The fund is a cooperative effort of E.MAP, Conemaugh Health System, and the 1889 Foundation. Visitors to the Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center can help support the fund by “feeding” Dr. Dog, a piggy-bank statue of Morley’s Dog dressed in medical garb who stands in the lobby.

Babich notes that the fund has recently been renamed the Kathy Lasky E.MAP/1889 Foundation Critical Skills Scholarship Endowment to honor Lasky, a registered nurse, former E.MAP board member, and champion of the program who passed away last year.

“Funds like this are so meaningful to the 1889 Foundation and our mission,” adds Sue Mann, president of the foundation. “We are grateful to E.MAP for recognizing the need, and creating such important opportunities for aspiring healthcare professionals.”