TMA Gives Scholarships to Minority Medical Students

 May 18, 2018


Twelve minority students entering Texas medical schools this fall each will benefit from a $10,000 scholarship from the Texas Medical Association (TMA). TMA awarded the scholarships to the students today in San Antonio at TexMed, TMA’s annual conference. Physicians selected the students for their academic achievement, commitment to community service, and desire to care for Texas’ increasingly diverse population.

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 136 scholarships totaling $847,500 since the program’s inception, thanks to generous gifts from TMAF donor physicians and their families, major supporters, and others.

2018 TMA Minority Scholarship Winners

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 Agniela (Annie) M. Bayardo, of Houston.

Mahmoud Abdulbaki of Garland graduates from The University of Texas (UT) at Dallas this month with a degree in biochemistry and will attend UT Health San Antonio Long School of Medicine this fall. His long-term plans are to treat patients in a rural area. Mr. Abdulbaki’s scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust; Drs. Rajam and Somayaji Ramamurthy of San Antonio, and an anonymous donor.  

Alejandro Aquino of Pharr received a master of public health degree from Duke University in Durham, N.C. He plans to study at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) School of Medicine to become a surgeon and then practice in South Texas or the Rio Grande Valley. Mr. Aquino’s scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust; the Hidalgo-Starr County Medical Society; and C. Enrique Batres, MD, of Sugar Land.  

Alberto Cantúa of McAllen receives his bachelor’s degree in biology from UTRGV this month and will attend The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston School of Medicine in the fall. He is undecided on his medical specialty, but plans to practice medicine in South Texas after completing medical school. The Bayardo trust; Baldemar Covarrubias, MD, of Corpus Christi; and Mark J. Kubala, MD, of Beaumont provided the scholarship for Mr. Cantúa. 

Kayla Daniels of San Antonio is a graduate of Texas A&M University with a degree in biomedical science. She will attend Texas A&M College of Medicine to become a pediatric pulmonologist. She plans to treat patients in South and Central Texas, particularly those who lack access to consistent medical care. Her scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust and E. Thomas Wightman, MD, of Arlington.

Bonnie Du of Brownsville earned her bachelor’s degree in prehealth studies from the University of Notre Dame. She will study at Dell Medical School at UT Austin and intends to practice obstetrics-gynecology or family medicine in a predominately Hispanic urban area of Texas. Ms. Du’s scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust and the Travis County Medical Society.

Orlando Martinez Luna of Hutto received his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from UT Austin. He will study family medicine at UT Southwestern Medical School and plans to practice in an underserved, rural community in Central Texas. The Bayardo trust; the TMAF Patrick Y. Leung, MD, Minority Scholarship Endowment, established by Dr. Leung and Mrs. Nancy Leung of Midland; and the Dallas County Medical Society provided Mr. Martinez Luna’s scholarship.

Diego Regalado of Navasota receives his bachelor’s degree in biology from Texas A&M this month. He will enter Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine (TTUHSC)-Lubbock this fall to study pediatrics. Mr. Regalado intends to practice in a small, underserved community in or near the Rio Grande Valley. The Bayardo trust provided Mr. Regalado’s scholarship.

Esdras Rodriguez of Friona graduates this month from West Texas A&M University with degrees in biochemistry and biology. He will study family, internal, or emergency medicine at TTUHSC Paul L. Foster School of Medicine in the fall. Mr. Rodriguez plans to practice in his hometown in the Texas Panhandle, or in another rural setting along the border near El Paso. Mr. Rodriguez’ scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust and the Nueces County Medical Society.

Eliora Tesfaye of Arlington earns a degree in biochemistry from UT Austin this month and will attend McGovern Medical School at UT Health in Houston this fall. She plans to study family medicine or surgery to later practice in a metro area. The Bayardo trust and the Harris County Medical Society/Houston Academy of Medicine provided the scholarship for Ms. Tesfaye.

Peter Ugoh of Katy receives his undergraduate degree in neuroscience from UT Austin this month. He will begin his studies at Baylor College of Medicine this fall and plans to practice in an underserved community in the Houston area. Mr. Ugoh’s scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust; the Khushalani Foundation in Humble; and Gregory R. Johnson, MD, of Houston.

Charleston West of San Antonio received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UT San Antonio. He will attend the University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine and plans to begin his medical career in his hometown. The Bayardo trust; H-E-B; and Mary Dale Peterson, MD, and Rafael Coutin, MD, of Corpus Christi, provided Mr. West’s scholarship.

Alyssa Wilder of Everman graduates this month from Abilene Christian University with a bachelor’s in biology and will attend the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine. She intends to study internal medicine or pediatrics and later practice in an underserved community in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Ms. Walker’s scholarship is provided by the Bayardo trust; Tarrant County Medical Society; Carla F. Ortique, MD, of Houston; and Irvin Robinson, MD, of Fort Worth. 

TMA is the largest state medical society in the nation, representing more than 51,000 physician and medical student members. It is located in Austin and has 110 component county medical societies around the state. TMA’s key objective since 1853 is to improve the health of all Texans. TMA Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the association and raises funds to support the population health, science and quality-of-care priority initiatives of TMA and the family of medicine.

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Contact:  Brent Annear (512) 370-1381; cell: (512) 656-7320; email: brent.annear[at]texmed[dot]org

Marcus Cooper (512) 370-1382; cell: (512) 650-5336; email: marcus.cooper[at]texmed[dot]org

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Last Updated On

August 01, 2018

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