Granite Falls resident, and Yellow Medicine East graduate, Allie Trudel, was recently awarded the Affiliated Community Health Foundation Scholarship. The scholarship was founded in 2002 by Carris Health (formerly ACMC) and is for students from local clinic areas who will obtain Medical Doctor (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic (DO).

According to Tom Rozendaal, Board Member and Carris Health Senior Director of Physician and Professional Services: “the purpose of the ACHF scholarship is to recognize the importance of educating the healthcare professionals of tomorrow.” Rozendaal added that the scholarship stems from the need to “recognize the immediate need to encourage medical careers in our local communities. The need for physicians, nurses and other healthcare professionals will continue to rise as our population ages.”

Trudel said that she’s been interested in medicine for most of her life, explaining that “my exposure to healthcare in Granite Falls was the largest driving factor in my decision to pursue medicine.” Trudel added that medicine combines several of her passions into one career, “including caring for others, working with a team, and continuing to learn throughout my life.”

She went on to say that although she doesn’t know where her medical education will take her, learning from the local medical community gave her the initial spark of inspiration. “Although I knew I was interested in healthcare at a young age, seeing the passion that local healthcare professionals had for their career, and the community they have settled in, inspired me to officially make the move into medicine,” she said.

Rozendaal says that “a medical student scholarship recipient is able to use their awarded funds to ease their accruing expenses.” For Trudel, this was a major benefit of being awarded with the scholarship. “This scholarship has helped to alleviate some of the financial obligations that come with school, and has allowed me to focus more on my studies,” she explained.

The scholarship is also a way for the Carris Board to gain better insight into the next generation of medical professionals. “The application process provides the Board a glimpse into the life of the applicant, their contributions to their community, their future aspirations and their upstanding character, Rozendaal said. “The choice is then made based on the board’s discretion and several variable guidelines.”

Trudel is currently attending medical school at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Although she hasn’t settled on a specific area of concentration yet, she is interested in emergency medicine, family medicine, and obstetrics.

“I hope to someday settle in a town and incorporate myself into the community,” Trudel said. “I see the impact that dedicated healthcare professionals have had in Granite Falls, and I would love to someday have an impact on the healthcare of a community similar to where I was lucky enough to grow up.”