Patients Invited to Apply for CAF-ApoPharma Distinguished Scholar Award

June 22, 2015 – The Cooley’s Anemia Foundation is accepting applications from individuals with thalassemia for the 2015 CAF ApoPharma Distinguished Scholar Award. The CAF-ApoPharma Distinguished Scholar Award, which was established last year, is made possible through a grant from pharmaceutical manufacturer ApoPharma.

CAF will award up to two scholarships to a U.S. citizen(s) with a clinically significant form of thalassemia pursuing doctoral studies in biomedical sciences, including medicine, pharmacy, nursing and basic research. (Ph.D., M.D., D.D.S., Pharm.D., D.V.M, etc.) in the United States or abroad. Total annual funding available for the awards is $20,000. Students enrolled in a doctoral program for the fall of 2015 are eligible to apply.

A clinically significant form of thalassemia would include alpha thalassemia major, beta thalassemia major, beta thalassemia intermedia, e beta thalassemia, hemoglobin H disease, or hemoglobin H disease-Constant Spring.

In awarding the funds for this scholarship project in 2014, Dr. Michael Spino, President of ApoPharma, noted that “over the past decade, we have been impressed by several thalassemia patients who are making notable contributions to society, based on their innate capabilities. In some cases, we believe that their contributions would be augmented if they had an opportunity to pursue postgraduate education. Indeed, we know several who have gone on to complete graduate education, who then became role models for other thalassemia patients. Yet, the ability of some thalassemia patients to pursue a postgraduate education may be limited due to financial constraints.”

Dr. Spino added, “We are excited about this opportunity and think it could serve as an inspiration to thalassemia patients throughout the U.S.”

Application Information

Applications must be received at CAF by September 15, 2015. There is not an application form; however, applicants should include all of the following:

  • a personal statement of goals and professional objectives;
  • a letter of reference from a member of the faculty in the program at the institution where the applicant is enrolled. If this is the applicant’s first year in the doctoral program, s/he may substitute a letter of recommendation from a member of the faculty at which undergraduate degree was obtained;
  • a statement from patient’s treating physician confirming diagnosis as a thalassemia patient;
  • a letter from bursar’s office of institution in which applicant is enrolled confirming applicant’s enrollment and including appropriate contact information for bursar’s office; and
  • contact information (address, email and phone) for the applicant.

In addition, all applicants must be registered with the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation. (Applicants who are unsure if they are registered with the Foundation should contact CAF Patient Services Manager Eileen Scott at

Patients can apply via email or regular mail. Email applications should be sent to with the subject line “Distinguished Scholarship Application.” Those sending in applications via regular mail should address them to:

Scholarship Review Committee
Cooley’s Anemia Foundation
330 Seventh Avenue, Suite 200
New York, NY 10001

All applications will be reviewed by a diverse panel which may request additional information from applicants.

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