SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – Nov. 1, 2023 – Buckfire Law is pleased to announce Aliana Rao, of Philadelphia, Penn., has been named this year’s recipient of the 2023 Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. Medical School Diversity Scholarship.
This annual award began in 2014 as a way for the Michigan-based law firm to show its commitment to helping medical students pursue their educational and career goals.
Rao is currently enrolled at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine. She earned her undergraduate degree in neuroscience from the University of Pittsburgh.
Rao is a Pakistani Muslim who grew up in a suburban Pennsylvania town. She worked with multiple organizations in her community, connecting with largely Hispanic and Black populations. Rao recently started working with RISE, an organization that provides free tutoring to K-12 students in the Philadelphia Public Schools.
She was elected president of Temple’s Emergency Action Corps (TEAC) which is an organization that was founded in 2006 and focuses on CPR certification and teaching, aiding the North Philadelphia population. One of the major projects they’ve undertaken is THRIVE, a free clinic, that runs out of a men’s shelter every Tuesday. They provide CPR training, Narcan, wellness bags, and more to their local community. TEAC also funded the presence of Sharing Express at the shelter, which provides free, fresh produce to the community.
“By acknowledging what our residents need and listening to their requests, we hope to better their lives and offer them a place where they feel safe and comfortable asking for help,” Rao said. “While I did not grow up in North Philadelphia, I have quickly come to love the area and the people I converse with. They are all from backgrounds that differ from mine and yet, I always feel comfortable speaking with them and, even more importantly, learning from them.”
Rao always volunteers with Temple’s Street Outreach program, which is a group that does bi-weekly walks to provide food, clothing, and other resources to those facing homelessness in North Philadelphia.
As Rao begins her second year of medical school, she says she recognizes the importance of having multi-ethnic perspectives in medicine and plans to contribute her own experiences to this. She plans to continue her lifelong passion of teaching and learning while striving to provide care to her community.
“Aliana’s empathy for her community and helping an underserved population is inspiring,” said Lawrence J. Buckfire, President and Lead Trial Attorney at Buckfire Law. “She’s helping provide community members with much-needed access to food, medications, and training. We couldn’t be prouder to name her this year’s winner of the Buckfire Law Medical School Diversity Scholarship.”
Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. awards one student each year with the $2,000 Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. Medical School Diversity Scholarship. The scholarship is available to a student attending medical school who is also a member of an ethnic, racial, or other minority, or someone who demonstrates a commitment to issues of diversity within their community.
Buckfire Law offers four annual academic scholarships for students seeking to continue their education. For more information on the scholarship program, visit our page, buckfirelaw.com/scholarships/medical.
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