WASHINGTON – The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley was awarded a federal grant of $230,000 to help encourage diversity among health care professionals.

The funds will be given to aspiring medical students from financially disadvantaged backgrounds with scholarships, announced the office of U.S. Senator John Cornyn.

The funding comes through the Department of Health and Human Services as part of the Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students (SDS) program.

“Investing in the next generation of Texas medical leaders will provide those students with invaluable skills now and keep Texas strong in the future,” said Sen. Cornyn. “I commend local leaders for their successful grant application and thank the Trump Administration for investing in students at UTRGV.”

The SDS program promotes diversity among health profession students and practitioners by providing scholarships to full-time students with financial need from disadvantaged backgrounds enrolled in health professions and nursing programs.

Participating schools are responsible for selecting scholarship recipients, making reasonable determinations of need, and providing scholarships that do not exceed the allowable costs.

Priority consideration will be given to applicants that work to place graduates in medically underserved communities, said the release.