A newly established scholarship will help aspiring researchers enrolled in the EVMS Biomedical Sciences Research master’s program. 

Julie Kerry, PhD, the EVMS Foundation Distinguished Professor in Biomedical Sciences and Professor and Chair of Microbiology and Molecular Cell Biology, says she established the Judith and Michael Kerry Biomedical Science Scholarship in memory of her parents because they always supported her educational pursuits. 

Even though her parents didn’t finish high school, they stressed the importance of education and made sacrifices to help Dr. Kerry and her four siblings in their educational endeavors. 

“I remember the day coming home from undergraduate,” Dr. Kerry says, “and telling my mom and dad that I had this chance to pursue a master’s degree in graduate school, and my mom said, ‘Go for it.’” 

Ultimately, she and two siblings earned doctoral degrees. Now, she says, she wants to honor her parents’ support and pay it forward to a deserving student. 

“I felt like having that opportunity to help someone pursue graduate studies where they may not have been able to pursue that before — I couldn’t pass that up.” 

The scholarship will be awarded to a Biomedical Sciences Research master’s student who demonstrates significant need and is in good academic standing. Preference will be given to students who are the first in their family to pursue a graduate-level degree. 

Dr. Kerry saw the need for the scholarship when a prospective student applied for the Biomedical Sciences Research master’s program but had to choose a different program because there were no scholarships. She hopes this one will be the first of several scholarships to come for Biomedical Sciences students and others who wish to pursue research careers. 

“Those are the students who are ultimately going to make the discoveries that we need to help improve medicine in the future, so we need to give them that chance.” 

To join Dr. Kerry in funding scholarships at EVMS, please call EVMS Development at 757.965.8500.