Laredo area foundations support UT Health Science Center programs

LAREDO (Oct. 16, 2009) — The South Texas Outreach Foundation has awarded a $50,000 gift to the UT Health Science Center San Antonio School of Health Professions. The gift will be used at the Laredo Campus Extension to recruit students, provide scholarships, offer summer programs and community service projects, and support a spring community and professional education conference.

“The South Texas Outreach Foundation is interested in supporting students who are committed to Laredo’s growing health care needs through excellence in education and dedication to their chosen careers. We are proud to support the UT Health Science Center in its efforts to make health care education accessible to Laredo students and affordable for their families,” foundation representatives said.

Health Science Center President William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP, said, “We appreciate the South Texas Outreach Foundation’s gift and the support from others in the Laredo community to enhance our educational offerings. South Texas has a great need for health care providers. We embrace the opportunity to provide educational and clinical training for future dentists and other health professionals.”

This South Texas Outreach Foundation award follows two other recent gifts from Laredo area organizations to develop and support programs at the Laredo Campus Extension, located at 1937 Bustamante St.

On Sept. 8, the Kim and Rod Lewis Family Foundation presented a gift to the School of Health Professions which will be used to offer a scholarship to a physician assistant studies student who plans to pursue a residency in otolaryngology (head and neck surgery). This student would work with patients who have cancers of the throat and neck under the tutelage of Randal A. Otto, M.D., FACS, professor and chair of the Department of Otolaryngology. In addition, part of the funds will be used for a student community service project delivered in Webb or LaSalle counties, and to support outreach activities that will bring South Texas students closer to programs offered at the Laredo Campus Extension.
On Aug. 27, the Matias De Llano Charitable Trust awarded the School of Health Professions scholarships to fund the 2009 Laredo physician assistant class.

“We appreciate the trustees of these three organizations not only for their generosity, but for their confidence in our programs and their belief in the value these health education professional degree programs bring to Laredo,” said School of Health Professions Dean Marilyn Harrington, Ph.D. “In the end, these funds will be reinvested into the community through improved health care for area residents provided by our graduates.”

The UT Health Science Center offers a combined bachelor’s and master’s degree in dietetics and nutrition, and a master’s degree in physician assistant studies at the Laredo Campus Extension. Clinical training for the degree programs is offered through partnerships with Laredo hospitals and health care clinics.

The mission of the Health Science Center’s Laredo Campus Extension is to educate and train outstanding health professionals to serve the Mid Rio Grande Border region.

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio is the leading research institution in South Texas and one of the major health sciences universities in the world. With an operating budget of $668 million, the Health Science Center is the chief catalyst for the $16.3 billion biosciences and health care sector in San Antonio’s economy. The Health Science Center has had an estimated $36 billion impact on the region since inception and has expanded to six campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. More than 26,400 graduates (physicians, dentists, nurses, scientists and other health professionals) serve in their fields, including many in Texas. Health Science Center faculty are international leaders in cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, aging, stroke prevention, kidney disease, orthopaedics, research imaging, transplant surgery, psychiatry and clinical neurosciences, pain management, genetics, nursing, dentistry and many other fields. For more information, visit

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