Wayne State Recipient of the Lara Rutan Scholarship 2020


My name is Faith Gammouh and I am delighted to be chosen as a recipient of the Lara Rutan Memorial Scholarship. I am from Flushing, Michigan, and graduated from Michigan State University in 2018. I played lacrosse there during my sophomore year when I discovered the PA profession and decided to pursue it wholeheartedly.

My clinical background has allowed me to care for and learn about individuals of various cultures and backgrounds. As a nurse aid, I provided patient care in two hospitals, one where several of the patients were of low economic status. I worked on many floors, including the intensive-care unit, cardiology, stroke, med-surg, pediatric, and most commonly, the prison unit. My time spent working as an emergency department technician fueled my desire to improve mental healthcare in our country as I cared for many patients who were truly struggling. I wanted to pursue a graduate school whose mission allowed me to continue to care for underserved communities. Wayne State so generously fulfills my wishes.

In 2018, in the midst of applying to PA school, my older brother died of an accidental overdose. My brother, Jordan, was an absolute genius, like the ones you see in movies, and more importantly, a good person behind closed doors. He struggled with addiction to pills, but prior to dying, he had not used in long time. During my professional career, I plan to raise awareness about addiction as the addiction stigma remains a public health issue. I plan to provide a safe space for addicts to confide in and give them adequate care that attends to their physical, mental, and emotional concerns.

Recently, I was reading about Lara in the Eugene Applebaum building and on the Love Always, Remember Always website. Her love, towards everyone and anyone, was infectious. Her warm smile, gentle heart, and longing to help others made her the perfect fit for a PA. Her ability to make a stranger feel loved and accepted in the blink of an eye reminds me of Jordan. Grief is a tricky, tricky concept. It isn’t linear. I once asked my older brother, Alex, how we continue to go about our lives and make the world better when it feels like there is a big elephant in the room. He told me that we “build a bigger room.” At first, this was difficult to absorb, but it is what both Lara and Jordan would want. The two of them aren’t going anywhere, and they shouldn’t. Together, we can use the love and energy they shared to create as good of a world as possible. We add more love and memories to create a bigger room. It is an absolute pleasure to create a bigger room through the Lara Rutan Memorial Scholarship.

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If you would like to donate to the Lara Rutan Scholarship click the link below.

Parents of physician assistant studies alumna celebrate daughter’s life and legacy with memorial scholarship


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