In 2018, Jennifer Wingertsahn’s father underwent an unplanned open heart surgery. His surgery was followed by complications and a lengthy hospital stay. It was this experience that encouraged the 2019 Hero Behind the Hero Scholarship recipient to pursue her Master of Public Health from CSU.
“Seeing what [my dad] went through, how our family struggled to cope through it all and how crucial it is that people understand what it means to be healthy and to take care of themselves, all of that is what influenced my decision to pursue higher education in public health,” she said.
Wingertsahn, who already completed her bachelor’s in health care administration, is stationed in England with her husband William, a technical sergeant in the U.S. Air Force. The experience with her dad’s hospitalization and the loss of her previous job due to the move overseas has allowed her to “view the health care industry from an entirely different perspective.”
“I want to play a part in helping others through their struggles surrounding health related issues, and I desire nothing more than to build a career where I can serve others by way of outreach and education,” she says.
Wingertsahn’s scholarship will cover up to 60 credit hours of her master’s degree.
“Health care should, most notably, focus on highlighting the sheer importance of the full spectrum of patients’ needs, and the scope reaches far beyond the mere provision of medical care,” she said. “Health care is about living, breathing human beings that are potentially being faced with some of the most stressful and terrifying circumstances of their lives. Communities desperately need increased access to information and resources that can assist their populations in educating themselves regarding health conditions, in addition to a wider range of available outreach programs.”
Completing her master’s degree will be an “enormous blessing” according to Wingertsahn.
“This scholarship would afford me the valuable opportunity to acquire indispensable skills and understanding to use towards making a real difference in the health care sector and lives of those in the community,” she said.
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