Texas Medical Assoc. Awards Scholarships to 15 Minority Medical Students

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Mega Doctor NEWS

Fifteen minority students entering Texas medical schools this fall each will receive a $10,000 scholarship from the Texas Medical Association (TMA). Physicians selected the students for their academic achievement, commitment to community service, and desire to care for Texas’ increasingly diverse population. TMA announced the winners Friday during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, held virtually.

TMA created the Minority Scholarship Program in 1998 to help diversify the physician workforce to meet the health care needs of Texans. The TMA Educational Scholarship, Loan, and Awards Committee chose one recipient for each Texas medical school from a competitive field of promising future physicians. The TMA Foundation (TMAF), the association’s philanthropic arm, funds the program.

The scholarship encourages minority students to attend medical school by lessening the financial burden of their postgraduate education, which averages more than $175,000. TMA has awarded 163 scholarships totaling $1.1 million since the program’s inception.

Recipients are known as the “Bayardo Scholars” in recognition of the majority support provided by the TMA Foundation Trust Fund of Roberto J. Bayardo, MD, and the late Agniela (Annie) M. Bayardo of Houston. Other generous gifts from H-E-B; St. David’s Foundation; and the TMAF Patrick Y. Leung, MD, Minority Scholarship Endowment support this year’s scholarships, as well as TMAF donor physicians and their families, and TMA county medical societies.

“Meeting and hearing from the medical students I have helped continues to be one of the most rewarding experiences of my life,” said Dr. Bayardo. “Their dedication and aspiration to care for Texans, particularly those in need, makes me feel that the future of medicine is indeed in good hands.”

2021 TMA Bayardo Scholars

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Caitlin Aguirre

Caitlin Aguirre

Caitlin Aguirre of El Paso received a bachelor of arts degree in biochemistry in 2020 from Wellesley College in Massachusetts. Ms. Aguirre will study at The University of Texas Medical Branch School of Medicine in Galveston, and intends to practice primary care in underserved areas along the Texas border. Her scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund; Baldemar Covarrubias, MD, of Corpus Christi; Mark J. Kubala, MD, of Beaumont; and Drs. Mary Dale Peterson and Rafael Coutin of Corpus Christi.

Yaw Agyina

Yaw Agyina

Yaw Agyina of Houston received a master’s degree in biomedical science from Texas A&M University in 2019. He previously received his bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas at Dallas in 2018. Mr. Agyina plans to practice primary care in an underserved Texas community. He will attend Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine in Lubbock. The TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and Cynthia Ann Jumper, MD, of Lubbock are providing Mr. Agyina’s scholarship.

Amy Beristain

Amy Beristain

Amy Beristain of San Antonio earned a master’s degree in medical science from The University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTSHC) in 2020. She previously received a bachelor’s degree in biology from Texas A&M University in 2019. Ms. Beristain plans to attend the UNTHSC Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine in Fort Worth, and hopes to practice psychiatry. Her scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and the Tarrant County Medical Society.

Brooke Birks

Brooke Birks

Brooke Birks of Spring graduates from the University of Houston this month with a bachelor’s degree in biology and public health. Ms. Birks plans to practice primary care in underserved areas of East Texas. She will study at Sam Houston State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Huntsville. The TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and the TMAF Patrick Y. Leung, MD, Endowment are providing Ms. Birks’ scholarship.

Victoria Delano

Victoria Delano

Victoria Delano of San Antonio graduated from the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio with a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree in 2017. She previously received a bachelor of science degree from Chamberlain College of Nursing in Illinois in 2012. Mrs. Delano will study at the University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine in San Antonio, and plans to stay in the city to practice family medicine. Her scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and H-E-B.

Felipe Diaz

Felipe Diaz

Felipe Diaz of Brownsville graduated from The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He plans to study at the UTRGV School of Medicine in Harlingen and eventually provide ophthalmology care for patients in the Valley. Mr. Diaz’s scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund; the Hidalgo-Starr County Medical Society; and C. Enrique Batres, MD, of Missouri City.

Amanda Figueroa

Amanda Figueroa

Amanda Figueroa of Los Fresnos received a bachelor’s degree in biology from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio this month. She will pursue her medical degree at Texas A&M University College of Medicine in Bryan/College Station and plans to return home to practice. The TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and the Bell County Medical Society are providing Ms. Figueroa’s scholarship.

Alejandra Gutierrez

Alejandra Gutierrez

Alejandra Gutierrez of Loxahatchee, Fla., graduated from the University of Miami in 2020 with a bachelor of science degree in biochemistry and nutrition. She will train at TCU and UNTSHC School of Medicine in Fort Worth, with the goal of practicing gynecology in that city. Ms. Gutierrez’s scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund, and Dr. and Mrs. Andre Desire of Wichita Falls.

Anuska Martinez Arguedas

Anuska Martinez

Anuska Martinez Arguedas of Katy graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 2018 with a bachelor of science degree in psychology. She plans to practice orthopedic surgery or obstetrics-gynecology in Central or South Texas. Ms. Martinez Arguedas will attend UT Austin Dell Medical School. Her scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund, St. David’s Foundation, and the Travis County Medical Society.

Ndanzia Mpunga

Ndanzia Mpunga

Ndanzia “Paul” Mpunga of Euless is completing a bachelor’s degree in biology and neuroscience this month from Austin College in Sherman. He plans to provide patient care as an orthopedic surgeon in an underserved area in Texas. Mr. Mpunga will study atUT Health San Antonio Long School of Medicine. His scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund, and Drs. Rajam and Somayaji Ramamurthy of San Antonio.

Dominique Norris

Dominique Norris

Dominique Norris of Houston earned a master’s degree in biomedical science in 2018 from Texas A&M University, where he also received a bachelor of science degree in psychology. Mr. Norris will study at the University of Houston College of Medicine. He intends to practice in internal medicine. The TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and the Khushalani Foundation in Humble are providing his scholarship.

Eryn Patin

Eryn Patin

Eryn Patin of Irving graduates from Tulane University in New Orleans this month with a bachelor of science degree in neuroscience. She plans to practice obstetrics-gynecology in underserved areas of Dallas/Fort Worth. Ms. Patin will attend UT Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. The TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund, the Dallas County Medical Society, and St. David’s Foundation are providing Ms. Patin’s scholarship.

Gaspar Pina

Gaspar Pina

Gaspar Pina of Austin will receive a bachelor of science and arts degree in biochemistry as well as a bachelor of arts degree in health and society from UT Austin this month. He plans to study cardiology at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth in Houston. Mr. Pina’s scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and H-E-B.

Jamie Provost

Jamie Provost

Jamie Provost of Mansfield graduated from UT Austin in 2020 with a bachelor of science degree in biochemistry. He will attend Baylor College of Medicine in Houston with the goal of providing oncology or internal medicine care for patients in the Houston area. The TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund; the Harris County Medical Society/Houston Academy of Medicine; and Carla F. Ortique, MD, of Houston are providing Mr. Provost’s scholarship.

Fabiola Ramirez

Fabiola Ramirez

Fabiola Ramirez of El Paso received a master’s degree in nursing as a pediatric nurse practitioner from Yale University in 2014. She previously received a bachelor of science degree in microbiology from UT El Paso in 2007. Ms. Ramirez will continue her studies at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Paul L. Foster School of Medicine in El Paso, where she plans to practice family medicine. Her scholarship is provided by the TMAF Bayardo Minority Scholarship Fund and Laurie J. Sutor, MD, of Dallas.

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