Scholarships totaling more than $21,0000 were recently awarded to local health care students by the Conway Regional Health Foundation.

The students received scholarships based on grade point average, leadership ability, activities and financial need. Scholarship recipients and their families were recognized during a reception in the Conway Regional auditorium.

During the reception, Conway Regional President and CEO Jim Lambert recognized the support of the medical staff which donated funds for seven of the scholarships as well as several private scholarship donors. Mr. Lambert said, "This type of support is essential to the future of health care in our community. This is a great example of how physicians and other donors can give back to the community through contributions to the Health Foundation."

Many area students applied for these scholarships. Mr. Lambert said, "These were difficult decisions because of the quality of the applicants." He noted that the Scholarship Committee spent a lengthy period of time interviewing applicants and reading essays and reference letters.

Physicians on the Conway Regional medical staff make an annual donation to fund scholarships. Five local recipients are:

Matt Austin of Conway plans to become a nurse anesthetist and will pursue his education at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro this fall. He is a pending graduate of Conway Christian High School.

Holly Delclos of Conway is pursuing a degree in speech language pathology at UCA. She is a graduate of Joe T. Robinson High School in Little Rock.

Andrea Eades of Conway will work toward a bachelor’s degree in pre-medicine from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She is a graduate of St. Joseph High School.

Kaleb Smithson of Little Rock is completing medical school at UAMS and is interested in Radiology and Orthopaedics. He holds a bachelor’s degree from UCA and is a graduate of Greenbrier High School.

Paige Weaver of Greenbrier will pursue a degree at Baylor University in Waco and plans to become a plastic surgeon. She is a pending graduate of Greenbrier High School.

Another medical staff scholarship was named after Dr. William Furlow, a retired Conway physician. The recipient this year is Joshua Ryan Blaylock of Conway. He has been accepted into the UAMS College of Medicine and has an interest in orthopedics. Blaylock holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. He is a graduate of Conway High School.

The Eleanor Duncan Scholarship memorializes a highly-respected oncology nurse at Conway Regional. Angela Payne of Vilonia will major in nursing at Arkansas Tech University with plans to become a hematology/oncology nurse. She is a pending graduate of Vilonia High School.

One scholarship is being provided through Conway Regional’s Nursing Retention and Recruitment Committee. Individual employees make contributions to the fund and the committee holds fundraisers to replenish the scholarships.

The Conway Regional Nursing Scholarship was awarded to Regina Sanders of Conway. She is working toward an LPN nursing degree at Pulaski Tech in North Little Rock and currently works as a medical services assistant in the Emergency Department at Conway Regional. Ms. Sanders is a graduate of Hope High School.

The John and Janice Robbins Scholarship is funded by the Conway Regional Women’s Council in honor of contributions to the community made by the former president and CEO of Conway Regional and his wife. This year’s recipient is Andrea Gosnell of Conway. She will pursue a bachelor of science in nursing degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and is a pending graduate of St. Joseph High School.

Tyler Castleberry, of Conway, was awarded the Jon Scott McMahan Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship is funded in memory of the late Jon Scott McMahan, a division fire chief with the Conway Fire Department and a long-time EMT in Conway. Mr. Castleberry has been accepted into the ASU paramedic program and is working toward a paramedic license. He is a firefighter for the city of Maumelle and holds a certificate from SAU Tech in Camden. He is a graduate of Conway High School.

The Mary Ann Stiefvater Scholarship honors the 50-year leader of Conway Regional’s medical information services. This year it was awarded to Kendra Massa of Conway. Kendra is pursing a bachelor’s degree in health information management from the University of Cincinnati. She holds a degree in medical records technology from UAMS and a degree in biology from UALR. She graduated from Stuttgart High School. Kendra is a coding supervisor at Conway Regional.

Anyone interested in contributing toward a health care scholarship fund at Conway Regional can contact Dot Welch, Associate Director of the Conway Regional Health Foundation, at 513-5771.