North Dakota student receives BCBSND Caring Foundation Scholarship award

Special to Devils Lake Daily Journal

FARGO—Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota (BCBSND) Caring Foundation is proud to announce that it has awarded this year’s Healthcare Leader scholarship in the amount of $5,000 to Melissa Kainz, a graduate student attending the University of Mary in Bismarck, N.D. Kainz is pursuing her doctor of nursing practice organizational leadership degree and currently works as the community clinical coordinator in the Division of Health Promotion for the state of North Dakota.

“We received many strong applications for the BCBSND Caring Foundation Healthcare Leader scholarship, and we are pleased to recognize Melissa Kainz as this year’s recipient,” shares Pam Gulleson, BCBSND Caring Foundation executive director. “Kainz demonstrates all the qualities of an emerging leader in health care through her work experience, scholastic honors, strong work ethic and her commitment to population health.”

Melissa Kainz

Core to the scholarship is the development of an innovative and impactful project in health care, which incorporates a leadership plan designed to support a successful project outcome, as well as academic and personal growth. Kainz’s project will focus on Alzheimer’s disease. Her action plan will be to improve the health and well-being of individuals who may develop the disease by early detection and intervention that will be imperative to delay progression of the disease. The goal of Kainz’s project will be to increase the percentage of individuals who experience subjective cognitive decline, recognize their symptoms and discuss them with a health care professional. This will be accomplished by engaging key stakeholders in the discussion. 

“I have always had a passion for helping others and taking care of people. My passion is population health and promoting health activities within the state of North Dakota,” Kainz shares. “It is also important to consider the inclusion of all backgrounds so that every North Dakotan has equitable access to care that will promote the best health and well-being for that individual to live their best life.”