Christus Trinity Mother Frances is taking entries for its Women with Heart scholarship opportunity to benefit three seniors in the Class of 2022. The scholarships will cover $9,000 worth of college tuition expenses for the students.
From now until Feb. 1, which is the beginning of American Heart Month, any area high school senior with any grade point average can enter for a chance to win the scholarship. To enter, high school seniors may submit a video, up to two minutes long, about heart health in women. Those who are selected as finalists by judges will be entered into the social media judging contest, where the public helps select the top five videos. From there, the top three winners are selected.
The third place scholarship recipient will receive $1,500; second place recipient will receive $2,500; and the grand prize scholarship is $5,000.
Clinical Director for the Cardiovascular Center of Excellence Jamie Moore said the third annual Women with Heart scholarship contest has the greater purpose of raising awareness for heart disease in women.
She said one of the things physicians noticed during the COVID-19 pandemic is women did not want to go to the hospital. She hopes the videos students make will share the message of not delaying care.
Three years ago, Moore said the organization was thinking of ways to make an impact and raise awareness, not just for women already experiencing heart disease, but also for young women to prevent heart disease. For that reason, high school seniors became the focus for the scholarship.
“Not only are we offering a scholarship for a senior, we’re also providing them with the knowledge they will research about women in heart disease. They make a video, they are with their friends. They have their families involved, they have their friends involved, so that awareness spreads,” Moore said.
The very first year the scholarship opened, there were over 400,000 views among the top five videos, Moore added.
“That’s 400,000 people who were made aware of heart disease,” Moore said. “That’s where the impact is made.”
“We are looking for creativity and personality,” Moore said. She talked about last year’s grand prize scholarship recipient, then-Tyler Legacy High School senior Sarae Sinville, who went on to attend Harvard University.
Moore said Sinville also spoke to diversity and highlighted the importance of heart disease in Black women. The third place winner from the first year of the scholarship opportunity also interned and volunteered with Christus’ cardiology team and is now in school to be a cardiologist.
Last year, Sinville said she had a deeper motive when applying for the scholarship.
“I didn’t do it for the money. It was really just more, ‘I hope that people see this video and I hope it reaches a lot of people’ which is why I tried so hard. I’m super excited that people were able to look at the video and think it was good enough for them to even support,” Sinville said.
Moore said spreading information about prevention is key.
“(Offering a program that makes a difference) is very impactful and it’s very rewarding. I’m very blessed to work in a facility where we not only focus on the patients inside the hospital, but we focus on the community outside the hospital to keep our community from getting sick in the first place,” Moore said.
Moore said the videos can touch any subjects about heart disease in women.
“It’s prevention, it’s education, it’s what to do once a woman is experiencing a heart attack, what they can do to prevent having a heart attack or having heart failure, or what they can do once they have had heart failure. It can be about a family member, it can be about anything they desire,” Moore said.
Any senior at any area high school or home school may submit a video that does not exceed 100 MB. Smartphone videos are acceptable, and the video can include family, friends and classmates, but only the student producing the video is considered the applicant. With video submission, a media consent form must be signed.
Last year, scholarships were delivered at each winner’s individual school, but this year, an award ceremony will be held for the winners of the scholarships, where they’ll be awarded as cash prizes to be used toward college or other continued education expenses. For more information, go to https://www.christushealth.org/trinity/heart-hospital/patient-resources/women-with-heart.