September 23, 2020 – TRIO/Marie Donner Scholarship

I am so excited to tell you guys that I received the TRIO scholarship! I applied to this scholarship in July; they asked for essays, letter of recommendations, my career goals, relationship to transplantation, and a list of extracurricular activities. I’ve been eyeing this scholarship since last year, but I couldn’t apply to it until I’m a college student.

$1,000 doesn’t seem like a lot, but because Las Positas’ tuition is so cheap, this will actually cover for next semester’s and summer’s tuition. I am extremely grateful I was chosen for this scholarship. About a month ago, I got an email from TRIO asking for donations. They said a record number of applicants applied this year and all were extremely qualified, but they didn’t have enough money to fund them all. So I wasn’t sure if I was going to be picked.

In case you don’t know, TRIO stands for Transplant Recipients International Organization. It’s an organization dedicated to promoting awareness of organ donation, providing support to those struggling with issues related to organ donation, promoting education of current innovations in the transplant field, and providing advocacy at the government level. I’m a member of the San Francisco Bay Area TRIO chapter.

Not only that, but Pati (a liver recipient who I closely work with and the San Francisco Bay Area TRIO president) called me and told me I would be the first ever recipient of the Marie Donner scholarship. Marie Donner was a transplant advocate very active with TRIO but sadly recently passed away. Here is the official TRIO release of her passing:

Our chapter has lost a devoted advocate and friend. Marie Donner passed away yesterday morning, September 17. She had gone into palliative care on Monday and died peacefully in the early hours after deciding to discontinue cancer treatments. Many of us remember her husband Jack, a heart recipient, and how together they spread the word about organ donation. After Jack’s death, Marie continued with TRIO, organizing our holiday parties and taking an active interest in each of us.

Pati told me that since their chapter directly contributed funds that were going to me, they were allowed to rename the scholarship in Marie’s honor. Since I was the first SF Bay Area member to receive the scholarship in a while, Pati said it was an opportunity to keep Mari Donner’s legacy alive. Pati also told me they planned to make it the Marie Donner scholarship every year thereafter. I’m truly honored to have been blessed with the trust and thoughtfulness of continuing Marie’s legacy.

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