As part of its ongoing commitment to advancing equity in Northeast Ohio and beyond, The MetroHealth System has pledged $125,000 to the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).
Over the next several years, MetroHealth will fund scholarships and provide internships for underrepresented scholars to prepare them for health care careers – something that is desperately needed given that only 10% of nurses and 5% of physicians are Black in the United States. Mounting research shows measurable health benefits for communities whose health care workforces reflect the individuals they serve.
“We’re doing this on top of so many other things MetroHealth has done – and will continue to do – to build equity, to give everyone a seat at the table, to make sure all people – no matter the color of their skin or where they live or how much money they make – have a chance at a long, happy and healthy life,” says MetroHealth President & CEO Airica Steed, Ed.D, RN, MBA, FACHE. “We are proud to partner with UNCF to ensure more young people make it through college and go on to make their dreams a reality.”
Since its founding in 1944, UNCF has helped more than 500,000 students across the country earn college degrees. The organization helps students reach their full potential by providing them with resources and funds to attend and graduate from college.
Over the next five years, MetroHealth will fund 20 merit-based scholarships for students at the Lincoln-West School of Science and Health, the country’s only high school inside a hospital. These $5,000 scholarships can be used at both four-year and two-year post-secondary institutions.
The financial commitment also allows MetroHealth to host five college students who are UNCF scholarship awardees – regardless of where they attended high school – as paid interns each summer over the next five years. Students must be Cuyahoga County natives.
“We want to impact as many scholars as possible as they get either a jumpstart on college or are continuing their higher education. Our goal is to scale this even larger,” says Alan Nevel, Senior Vice President, Chief Equity & Community Impact Officer. “We are committed to removing the systemic barriers that prevent far too many of our neighbors from living healthy lives. One way we can do that is by opening up new educational opportunities for our community’s young people.”