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Scholarship Spotlight: Alne-Swensen Scholarship

The Augsburg PA Program is proud to recognize four winners of this year’s Alne-Swensen Scholarship! Shamso Jama, Class of 2022, and Ethan Dekam, Emma Delaney, and Kelsey Reineke, Class of 2023 all won awards. The scholarship fund was established in 1992 to encourage promising health care students and to honor the memory of Trine Swensen.

Shamso Jama, Class of 2022, was born in Somalia but emigrated to the US as a child.  She received her BA in Biology from the University of MN and has made significant research contributions focused on mental health and substance abuse with a goal of improving outcomes for vulnerable populations.

I intend to continue pursuing research interests that focus on improving outcomes for vulnerable populations. The award of this scholarship will ensure that I expand my research interests in the future and promote evidence-based interventions for underserved communities.”

Ethan Dekam, Class of 2023, received his BA in Biology with a minor in Psychology from St John’s University.  Ethan credits his drive to be successful in PA school to a passion for lifelong learning and selfless service that he learned from his family. Ethan hopes to honor the memory of his father through his determination to give back to the community as a PA.

“PA school can be overwhelming at times so it is important for me to keep my sights set on my “why” for going to PA school when things get difficult.”

Emma Delaney, Class of 2023, earned her BA in Biology with a minor in Theology from University of St Thomas and worked as a CNA prior to starting PA school. She is excited to begin the clinical phase of the program and have an impact on her patients.

“Building patient relationships was so special to me. I feel as a PA I will still be able to make those close connections while being able to do more procedural medicine which really interests me.”

Kelsey Reineke, Class of 2023, has a BS in Respiratory Therapy from North Dakota State University and worked as a respiratory therapist and Children’s Hospital Minnesota prior to starting PA school. She has a passion for patient education and says as a respiratory therapist she found the greatest reward for herself and for patients and their families was through education.

“I believe I made a difference in many lives by presenting information that was concise, effective, and understandable to a wide variety of education levels… I want to bring my passion for education to the community where I will work and help people live their best and healthiest lives.”

The Augsburg PA Program is proud of all of these students’ accomplishments.  They exemplify the program’s mission to educate empathic, community-minded, and forward-thinking health care leaders to practice in primary care with a focus on underserved, underrepresented, and marginalized communities.  Congratulations to them all.