CAC student receives Frank Lanza Memorial Scholarship

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Tigest Maru (Courtesy of CAC)

Central Arizona College student, Tigest Maru, is one of 20 community college healthcare students nationwide who will receive a $2,500 Frank Lanza Memorial Scholarship.

Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), with the generous support of CAE Healthcare and L-3 Communications, Inc., have awarded $50,000 in scholarships to the 2015 Frank Lanza Memorial Scholars.

The Lanza Scholarship Program targets part-time, full-time and international students who have completed 50 percent of their course work toward an associate degree in nursing, emergency medical services or respiratory care programs offered by regionally accredited community colleges. A panel of independent judges selected the recipients by application based on academic and leadership endeavors as well as community service.

Due to health reasons, Ms. Maru was forced to put off college for a brief time.

“When I was sick, I was impressed with my health care team. It confirmed what I wanted to do and it was time to stop putting it off.”

In January 2014, Ms. Maru was on her way to achieving her goal of becoming a nurse. She was accepted into and began the registered nurse associate degree program at CAC.

Just prior to her finals for block one, Ms. Maru received a call that her father had died. She struggled through her finals, knowing the he was with her.

“This was a large life changing moment for me,” she said. “He encouraged me and I plan to finish my degree in his memory.” Her anticipated graduation date is December 2016.

As a student at CAC, Ms. Maru has served as secretary of the San Tan Campus Phi Theta Kappa Chapter and is a member of the Central Arizona Student Nurses’ Association. Recently, she joined the Student Nurses’ Association of Arizona. Within each of these organizations she has been active in a variety of community service projects, conferences, and enjoys promoting opportunities to other students.

Ms. Maru was recognized as the San Tan Campus Phi Theta Kappa Distinguished Officer for 2014-2015 and received a certificate in recognition of “Exemplary Leadership at Central Arizona College and Pinal County In Celebration of Women’s HERstory 2015.”

Frank Lanza served in the U.S. Coast Guard during the Korean War. He was a member of the board of directors for the Coast Guard Foundation and received the 2003 Distinguished Corporate Leadership award from the Soldiers’, Sailors’, Marines’ and Airmen’s Club. Mr. Lanza was also a member of the board of governors for the Aerospace Industries Association and the American Italian Cancer Foundation. A philanthropist, he and his wife supported a variety of charities through a family foundation.
Mr. Lanza founded L-3 Communications in 1997, a global aerospace and defense company that has grown to $15 billion in annual revenues and employs approximately 66,000 people worldwide.

This will be the last year the Lanza Scholarships will be awarded as the funding for the program has been completed. Over the past six years, 130 students have received $250,000 in scholarships through this program.

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