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North Catholic grad earns scholarship

September 25, 2018 Digital Media Exclusive

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Luke Ball, left, has always been a big inspiration to his brother, Jacob, who won a 2018 Izzie’s Gifts of Hope Foundation scholarship to assist in his goal of entering the biomedical engineering field and improve the lives of future organ donors and recipients. Jacob has been heavily involved in raising awareness for the donation community since his brother received a heart transplant in 2010.

CRANBERRY TWP — Jacob Ball has been on a mission to help people like his younger brother Luke since 2010 when Luke received a heart transplant.

Jacob said his brother, who was 6 years old at the time of his transplant, was his biggest inspiration for involvement with the field of donations.

Jacob, a 2018 North Catholic High School graduate, said he first became involved with the world of transplants because of Luke’s heart condition and his need for a new one, but he stayed interested once he saw how much transplants affected such a wide range of people.

But Jacob’s journey to find his niche in the biomedical engineering field will not be a cheap one.

Jacob started college at the University of Delaware this semester to start working toward the future in which he sees himself contributing to advancements in the field of transplantation.

This is a goal with which the Center for Organ Recovery & Education and Izzie’s Gifts of Hope Foundation are both assisting.

Jacob won a scholarship from the foundation and CORE which recognizes individuals who have been directly affected by organ, tissue or cornea donation and honors each person’s contributions to organ donation awareness and community involvement.

The award’s namesake, Pittsburgh native Isabelle Christenson, was a two-time transplant recipient who died in 2010 when she was only 10 years old.

“I’m extremely grateful,” Jacob said. “It means so much to me that they’re willing to support my journey through college and invest in the future that I hope to bring.”

Read the full story in the Butler Eagle.

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