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### Elevate Higher Education Opportunities: Muscular Dystrophy Association’s First College Scholarship Program Now Accepting Applications

Muscular Dystrophy Association’s First College Scholarship Program Now Accepting Applications to Expand Higher Education Opportunities for Students with Neuromuscular Disease

MDA’s initiatives for Community Engagement offer additional assistance and resources for young adults.

New York – February 26, 2024 – The Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) has introduced its inaugural MDA College Scholarship program, and applications are now being accepted until March 31, 2024. This program aims to award 10 merit-based college scholarships, each valued at up to $5,000, to students affected by neuromuscular disease who are either planning to pursue or are already engaged in higher education at a recognized college or university. Successful applicants will receive notification in June, with the announcement of all recipients scheduled for mid-August. By launching this program, MDA underscores its dedication to assisting young adults with neuromuscular disease in acquiring the essential skills and knowledge necessary for success in the professional realm. MDA encourages all eligible students to seize this distinctive opportunity to enrich their educational journey and leadership skills.

A woman in an electric wheelchair posing in front of the Texas AM Mays Business School entrance.

The applications are now open for the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s pioneering College Scholarship program, aiming to enhance higher education prospects for students affected by neuromuscular disease.

This fresh endeavor is crafted to foster a supportive network and promote leadership development among students pursuing academic and career aspirations. Eligible candidates are those who exhibit a strong dedication to community involvement, personal growth, and leadership potential, with no age restrictions on applications. Apart from financial aid, the program also introduces students to an online community of peers, fostering the exchange of experiences, advice, and resource sharing.

“Through nearly 75 years of tireless work by the Muscular Dystrophy Association to expedite treatments, improve care, and advocate for community access, the advancements in treating individuals with neuromuscular disease have resulted in enhanced longevity and empowerment. It is imperative and timely for MDA to create additional avenues of support and connection for this demographic, and we are honored to bolster students’ academic and career aspirations,” expressed Alicia Dobosz, Vice President of Community Engagement at MDA. “This scholarship initiative is just one of the ways we are preparing young adults for a prosperous future. The myriad decisions and considerations that young adults encounter are substantial, and we aim to be a valuable resource and facilitator for them during this critical phase of life. We are thrilled to launch this program as a platform for students to achieve their academic objectives while cultivating a sense of community and refining their leadership abilities.”

MDA offers a wide range of educational, advocacy, and community-building programs tailored to support young adults grappling with neuromuscular disease. These programs encompass mentorship opportunities, resource guides to navigate the transition from pediatric to adult medical care, and other top-tier, responsive, and pertinent educational initiatives and materials. These endeavors are all geared towards equipping individuals with the necessary resources to surmount access barriers, navigate life transitions, and make informed decisions regarding their care. Learn more .

Dr. Chris Rosa, PhD, President & CEO of The Viscardi Center, and Vice Chair of the Muscular Dystrophy Association Board of Directors, emphasized, “Empowering the lives of students living with neuromuscular disease through education, financial aid, and leadership development lies at the core of the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s college scholarship program. Demonstrating our support for young adults enables us to invest in our community for a more inclusive future, where disability is recognized as a vital component of diversity. This program celebrates the immense potential and unique strengths of Muscular Dystrophy Association community members, affirming that their accomplishments are acknowledged and form part of our broader initiatives to support young adults.”

MDA expresses gratitude for the collaboration on this program from our partners at Certinia.

“At Certinia, we are privileged to contribute to the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s inaugural MDA College Scholarship program. This initiative plays a crucial role in ensuring that students living with neuromuscular disease have the opportunity to pursue their educational aspirations and unlock their full potential. Access to higher education often serves as a pivotal step in opening up new career pathways, and we commend MDA’s endeavors to assist young adults in realizing their academic and professional goals,” stated DJ Paoni, Chief Executive Officer, Certinia.

About Muscular Dystrophy Association

The Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) stands as the premier voluntary health organization in the United States for individuals grappling with muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related neuromuscular conditions. For over 70 years, MDA has been at the forefront of driving research progress, enhancing care, and advocating for the well-being of our communities. MDA’s mission is to empower those we serve to lead longer, more autonomous lives. To delve deeper, visit and follow MDA on , , , , , , and .