NEW ORLEANS — The fourth annual Ochsner Health Medical School Scholarship for LSU Health Shreveport School of Medicine has been awarded to recent Xavier University of Louisiana graduate, Aaron Jackson. The scholarship award covers the cost of tuition for Aaron to attend LSU Health Shreveport School of Medicine over the four-year enrollment.
“Ochsner Health is driven by our mission to serve, heal, lead, educate and innovate’ with a commitment to a ‘healthy state’ for all by training the next generation of physicians,” said Leonardo Seoane, chief academic officer of Ochsner Health and associate vice chancellor of academic affairs at LSU Health Shreveport. “Through outstanding academic accomplishments and demonstrated resilience, Aaron has demonstrated the attributes needed to be impactful as a physician. He is committed to improving health outcomes for our communities by focusing on health equity.”
Jackson, a first-generation college graduate, earned his bachelor of science from Xavier. Outside of the classroom, he worked to put himself through college, and engaged in work-study programs, internships, and scientific research. He aims to show young people of color that attending medical school is possible, even in the face of adversity, and to open new doors to young aspiring healthcare professionals by providing them with shadowing, volunteering, and research opportunities.
Jackson is from Opelousas, Louisiana, a small, rural city near Lafayette with a majority-Black population. While well-known for its zydeco music and spice and seasoning production, Opelousas also has a high poverty rate. Aaron was raised with three siblings by two loving parents. “I knew early on in life that I wanted to care for and treat those affected by mental illnesses, having firsthand witnessed my brother’s struggles with his combination of intellectual and impulsive disorders,” he said in his application letter. “I also knew, however, that the road to becoming a physician would not be an easy endeavor, especially for someone like me and with my disadvantaged background.”
To qualify for consideration for this scholarship, students are required to be a Louisiana resident, a Xavier student, and have already been accepted into the LSU Health Shreveport – School of Medicine. To apply for the scholarship, Xavier students detailed academic accomplishments, recommendations and an essay reflecting on how they have overcome adversity. A joint Xavier and Ochsner committee reviewed the applications and selected the final scholarship recipient. One scholarship recipient is selected annually for this scholarship program.
For more information about Ochsner Academics, visit www.ochsner.org/locations/center-for-academic-excellence. For more information about Xavier, visit www.xula.edu. For more information about LSU Health Shreveport School of Medicine visit https://lsuhs.edu/som.