NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – Through Sentara Healthcare’s two new programs, Old Dominion University has received nearly $400,000 to support qualified students pursuing health care careers.

On April 12, a check presentation ceremony was held at ODU’s Broderick Dining Commons. During the ceremony, the ODU Educational Foundation received $300,000 through Sentara Scholars and $98,805 through Project CHOICE.

These new programs were launched by Sentara in response to medical staff shortages in the U.S. health care system.

“Sentara Healthcare is investing in the future of the region through this gift as our students will be able to focus their time on the important work they need to accomplish as they complete their degree programs,” said Bonnie Van Lunen, dean of the College of Health Sciences at ODU. “The Sentara Scholars program will impact our community as well, as students will know how much they are supported within the Commonwealth of Virginia.”  

The Sentara Scholars money will aid students of demonstrated needs who are enrolled in health care programs, while the Project CHOICE money will fund books, tuition, the MAPS (Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students) Club, entrance exams, prep courses, and application fees.

These programs focus on attracting minorities and other underrepresented groups.