Get out your handkerchief!



This morning, it happened again. I interviewed someone with a great story and started to choke up. It starts with a prickling in my eyes and then it threatens to turn into tears. If I’m face-to -face with the person, I’m going to have to blow my nose. Sorry.

I’ve had the privilege of talking to some people for whom modern medicine has made a real difference. Today, it was a man whose cancer was arrested early, while he was in his 30s. He went from assuming the news meant death to a life that opened back out into limitless possibilities for his family, his career, and for those he is now able to help.

Another time, I talked to a woman whose Parkinson’s was made immensely more tolerable with a brain implantation. The surgeons mapped out her brain and then, on a future visit, put the technology in place. Not only does she not shake, but she looks up and looks people in the eye, walks with confidence and has her life back.

The two that moved me the most, however, when my eyes filled up and I had to wipe them fast so that tears didn’t spill (Dammit, Jim! I’m the interviewer, not the interviewee!) were the interviews I had with two adult men who had their hearing restored after childhood, their adolescent years and even parenthood. They both had soft and gentle voices and were the kindest, most humble gentlemen. They suffered from isolation their whole lives – not around the circle near the fire, as one man described it, but just outside the circle. The other had been an excellent student but as his hearing deteriorated, his choice of jobs whittled down to nothing and his future narrowed.

But now the world was opening for them. They had agency and self-determination and could hear birds and the voices of grandchildren and laughter and …

No, I’m fine, really. Just got something in my eye.

Stewardship Sample

Dr. and Mrs. Smith, because of you, tomorrow’s physicians are excited about rural health:

 “I think this is for me!”

“This weekend refueled my passion.”

“I realized how important the physician is to a community.”

These are some of the insights and comments from students at the annual Rural Health Scholar’s Retreat, held each October in the Hocking Hills. This unique event impacts medical students in profound ways and in turn, improves the lives of their future patients. Your investment makes it happen.

Open to all.

Each year, students from all of Ohio’s medical schools are invited to apply to participate in the retreat. The goal is to attract student to excellence in clinical practice, research, advocacy and medical education. As you know, a shortage of physicians relative to rural populations is a challenge of public health.

“It’s so easy to be dissuaded.”

According to the head of the program, Robert Jones, MD, most medical students think of family and rural doctors like unicorns: you read about them, but they’re a myth. Add in the other myths about rural practice, plus a lack of support from medical school peers, and it’s easy to see the challenge of attracting new doctors to this frequently neglected area of patient practice.

“All of my concerns were addressed.”

That’s what one satisfied participant said of the weekend, where a combination of practical advice and testimony from the field left students feeling inspired and curious. Students learn that their practice will be anything but dull or routine. They will have the opportunity to deliver babies, treat and manage intricate problems and make a difference. “There is nothing more rewarding,” says Dr. Jones, “than the honor shown to me by my patients.

From our students

The annual retreat, for me, reinforces the passion I have for rural medicine. Many thanks to Dr. and Mrs. Smith for their patronage to this wonderful retreat. I truly appreciate the opportunity to be part of such a unique selection of students. Susan Brown

Thank you for supporting this retreat and allowing me to have this experience. I feel that this weekend I spent in Hocking Hills with others who are passionate about rural care was an invaluable one, and I will carry the memories and knowledge gained at this retreat with me throughout the rest of my training and career. Without your donation, this weekend would not have been possible for myself and the other students who attended, and I am truly thankful for you and your support. Amy Miller


Thank you so much for your generous contribution to the Rural Health Scholars Retreat. I loved hearing from rural doctors, connecting with other interested students, and learning about all the possibilities available in rural health. It was such a great experience to get away from school for the weekend and enjoy the beautiful Hocking Hills area and cabin. It was such a refreshing and learning experience. Thanks for supporting this program and encouraging the future of rural physicians in Ohio! Paul Doe


You keep the opportunity alive

You are truly and advocate both for our future doctors to enjoy rewarding careers as well as for the health of future generations in rural areas. Thank you for everything you do for Ohio’s medical students and their future patients.

What’s LOVE got to do with it?

Everyone has seen it.


Everyone uses it. And that’s exactly what LOVE’s creator, Robert Indiana, wanted everyone to do. See it. Use it.

So it’s not original. But it is radical.

Because it’s not about the chosen typeface, it’s not about the materials or the color.

It’s about what you feel when you see that big ol’ LOVE.

So let me ask you: What does your donor feel when she sees the newsletter, the solicitation, the proposal? Do you tell her how fantastic your organization is (and I’m sure it is), how many experts you have (good ones, I bet), how many tons, how many bricks, etc?

You do good work. But how does you donor feel?