Whitworth Communications

For Immediate Release

July 20, 2006

Whitworth Alumnus Named Recipient of $300,000 Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship

Jordan Sand, a 2006 Whitworth alumnus and a resident of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, was recently named the recipient of a $300,000 Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Graduate Scholarship. The award provides $50,000 per year for up to six years of graduate study. Sand will begin pursuing his M.D. this fall at the University of Washington School of Medicine; he will then go on to earn a master's degree in public health.

The Cooke Foundation's graduate-scholarship program awarded scholarships to 77 college seniors and recent graduates who will begin graduate school this fall. The program received 1,100 nominations this year and is one of the largest and most competitive scholarships in the country, according to the foundation's website. Sand was nominated for the scholarship by Mike Ingram, associate dean for faculty development and scholarship at Whitworth and the college's Jack Kent Cooke Foundation faculty representative.

Sand, who double-majored in biochemistry and Spanish and minored in philosophy at Whitworth, says the scholarship is a blessing that holds unexpected opportunities.

"The scholarship will free me from the huge burden of debt that is common for most medical-school graduates," Sand says. "The stress from going into so much debt to live out my dream is now gone and I will be able to focus on my studies even more. Because I won't be tied to high loan payments immediately following medical school, I will have an immense amount of freedom to pursue my goals, such as working with underserved populations and being involved in international medicine."

Sand's goals also include practicing neurosurgery in an urban location, conducting research, teaching at a medical school, and working in the area of health policy.

"My love of knowledge and my love of humanity - both of which were developed during my education at Whitworth - have helped me choose to become a doctor," Sand says.

As a Whitworth student, Sand's involvements include being a chief emergency medical technician for the Whitworth Health Center, volunteering at Deaconess Hospital, and working as a mentor with Mentors and Students Together. Sand also taught life skills to Cuban refugees through World Relief, taught CPR/first aid through the American Red Cross, was a tutor in Whitworth's chemistry department and the science library, and was a lead counselor for a preventative-education agency.

During the summers of his sophomore and junior years, Sand took part in competitive research programs at the University of Idaho and the University of North Texas. Sand, who graduated with a 3.98 GPA, was honored for his academic talents and his heart for service in May, when he received the Outstanding Senior Chemistry Major Award, and the Whitworth Alumni Ideals Award. As an undergraduate, Sand received the Jef Olson Outreach Award, a Johnston-Hanson Scholarship, was named Work-Study Student of the Year, and received the Chemistry Talent Award.

"Jordan is a young man with exceptional promise and is one of the quickest learners I have had the pleasure of teaching," says Whitworth Chemistry Department Chair Karen Stevens. "He is an incredible student who brings joy and enthusiasm to the classroom. Jordan's Spanish skills and his desire to serve the impoverished in our communities will help him to become a compassionate and capable physician."

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is a private, independent foundation established in 2000 through the will of Jack Kent Cooke (1912-1997). Cooke, who believed education was a lifelong endeavor, made his first fortune in the communications television industry and went on to become owner of several professional sports teams and the Los Angeles Daily News.

To fulfill its mission, the foundation identifies and supports young people of exceptional promise, application, deportment, and character who have financial need and have demonstrated excellence in academic endeavors and extracurricular activities, according to the foundation's website.

"Our objective is to help high-achieving students who have financial need, whether they are attending a middle school in rural Kansas or Harvard Medical School," says Matthew J. Quinn, executive director of the foundation. "The graduate-scholarship recipients know hard work and sacrifice. These scholarships recognize their devotion to education, reward their efforts, and provide an incentive to continue excelling . . . and, we hope, to benefit society."

To learn more about the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, visit www.jackkentcookefoundation.org.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private, liberal arts college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The college enrolls 2,400 students in more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs.


Mike Ingram, associate dean for faculty development and scholarship, professor of communication studies, Whitworth College, (509) 777-4428 or mingram@whitworth.edu.

Julie Riddle, public information officer, Whitworth College, (509) 777-3729 or jriddle@whitworth.edu.

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