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Cardenas Markets Inc. Donates $250,000 for Physician Assistant Scholarships

Cardenas Markets Inc. donated $250,000 to the University of La Verne to benefit students pursuing graduate degrees in its new Physician Assistant Practice program.

The Cardenas Markets Scholarship for Physician Assistants expands access for students interested in the growing profession, which experienced an 18 percent increase in jobs in the Inland Empire between 2011 and 2016, according to the Centers of Excellence.

“Through the Convergence initiative, the University of La Verne has demonstrated its commitment to preparing students to meet the health care needs of Inland Southern California. We are deeply grateful to Cardenas Markets for sharing in our passion for this cause by bestowing this very generous gift, which will help many Physician Assistant students at the University of La Verne,” said University of La Verne President Devorah Lieberman.

The university celebrated its receipt of the gift during a luncheon with Cardenas Markets at Hanawalt House on Jan. 31.

 Cardenas Markets, founded by Jesus and Luz Cardenas, has more than 30 locations throughout Southern California and Las Vegas. The Cardenas family has long supported the university, sponsoring the University of La Verne’s Scholarship Gala, LEAD Conference, Parent Empowerment Institute, and the University Golf Tournament, among other programs.

“We are thrilled that this donation will help address a tremendous need in the medical field, providing not just a pathway for future healthcare workers, but an outcome that will benefit underserved communities,” said Marco Robles, company spokesman.

 Scholarships will be awarded to students accepted into the program, with an affinity for military veterans. Five $10,000 scholarships will be awarded each year for five years. Recipients must be full-time students and maintain a 3.0 grade point average.

 The University of La Verne’s intense 27-month Physician Assistant program consists of academic and clinical coursework. It also includes opportunities for military veteran students in the program to assist wounded soldiers during clinical rotations at sites such as Casa Colina Hospital and Centers for Healthcare in Pomona. Students will be required to complete 118 units to receive a master’s degree.