Health Care Provider Creates Scholarship for Public Health Undergraduates
By Bemnet Faris
Neil Meltzer stands with student speaker Mina Griffioen and SPH Dean Dr. Boris Lushniak at the fall 2018 SPH commencement ceremony.
LifeBridge Health has committed $50,000 to endow a Maryland Promise scholarship, providing financial and programmatic support to students with financial need at the University of Maryland with priority given to undergraduate students in the School of Public Health.
Established in honor of company President and CEO Neil Meltzer, MHA, MPH, the scholarship will further LifeBridge Health’s commitment to improving lives through philanthropy.
LifeBridge Health, based in in Northwest Baltimore, seeks to improve the health of the individuals and communities it serves through compassionate, high-quality care. Now that mission extends to supporting Maryland students in need.
“Public health students are on the forefront of massive issues facing our society: poverty, social disparities, addiction, violence and much more," Meltzer said. "The LifeBridge Health Maryland Promise Scholarship will help the students of tomorrow as they prepare to take on these complex challenges and ‘do good” in the world."
The scholarship celebrates Meltzer’s role as a public health champion. He earned his Master of Public Health and Health Administration degrees from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in Louisiana, and his undergraduate degree in public health from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. His public health background influences all of his decisions as a leader at LifeBridge Health; his commitment to the field is also evident in his service on the School of Public Health Dean’s Council.
In December, Meltzer drew on his experience as a student and steward of public health when he delivered the School of Public Health’s winter commencement keynote address. In it, he highlighted the health disparities experienced by people in the Northwest Baltimore area to underscore the importance of public health. He shared stories about LifeBridge Health’s initiatives in areas such as pediatric HIV, support of unwed fathers and housing for seniors. Meltzer applauded graduates' desire to solve complex challenges and do good in the world—a desire supported by their education at the School of Public Health.
This scholarship will help the most deserving of students achieve these goals. Under the Clark Challenge for the Maryland Promise Program, the scholarship will allow recipients to access programs like peer and cohort group mentoring, coursework exclusively available to Maryland Promise Scholars, individualized tutoring and special academic advising. These programs will support their transition into higher education and ensure their personal and academic success. The scholarships will be available for incoming freshmen recipients for the entirety of their four years at Maryland and for two years for transfer students. All gifts to the scholarship will be matched dollar for dollar during the Clark Challenge for the Maryland Promise Program.
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