Bend Surgery Center Foundation has awarded $15,000 in scholarships to C.O. students.

Bend Surgery Center Foundation has awarded $15,000 in scholarships to students graduating from high schools located in Jefferson, Crook, and Deschutes counties.

A nonprofit, BSCF provides financial support to Central Oregon high school graduates who demonstrate a commitment and desire to pursue further education in the health care field.

"Central Oregon, like many parts of the nation, has a shortage of health care workers," said Neal Maerki, BSCF board president. "By encouraging local students to pursue careers in medical-related fields through our scholarship program, BSCF is helping to increase the number of health care providers for the future."

Scholarship recipients include Edwin Gutierrez-Vargas and Cole Little, of Culver High School, and Kaliyah Iverson, of Madras High School.

The foundation also awards their post-graduate scholarships in late June to students who have received their bachelor's degree and are in a graduate program for advanced studies in a health care field.

To date, BSCF has approved $212,000 in scholarship funding, supporting 155 students from Central Oregon.

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