According to studies, students with chronic conditions like type 1 diabetes show higher levels of stress and difficulty pursuing higher education. So, nonprofits like Beyond Type 1 are helping to level the academic playing field.
Through its Diabetes Scholars program, Beyond Type 1 has awarded scholarships to 58 students across the country, including Saratoga High School graduate Marina Kaypaghian, who will attend the University of Southern California this fall.
Kaypaghian is taking an accelerated EMT course this summer, and as a high school student, she co-founded a diabetes nonprofit called Kaffa Exchange.
The Kaffa Exchange helps children with type 1 diabetes in Ethiopia by encouraging people to donate the same amount they would pay for a cup of coffee.
“I started the Kaffa Exchange project so that I could help people with T1D in Ethiopia, like me, but who don’t have the same resources available to them,” Kaypaghian says on his website.
The Diabetes Scholar program is funded by national donations and corporate contributions. Since 2008, the program has awarded more than $2 million in college scholarships.
“We are proud (to honor) the achievements of the class of 2022 diabetes researchers,” said Jordan Jendricks, vice president of missions and programs for Beyond Type 1. “These students are incredibly deserving of recognition. They demonstrate strength in managing and surviving a turbulent chronic illness while exceeding academic expectations, and we are continually inspired by their perseverance and resilience.
This year, the program awarded scholarships totaling $166,000, for amounts ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 per student. The amount represents the highest level of funding the program has awarded to date.
This year, the organization designated “a portion of the scholarships for students who identify as Black, Indigenous and people of color, according to a statement.
“Enabling historically marginalized young students to pursue higher education is critical to the Diabetes Scholars program,” said Beyond Type 1 Senior Community Leader Tiana Cooks. “These grantees have overcome their challenges to successfully juggle academic demands, extracurricular activities, jobs and so much more.We are incredibly proud of them.