Lydia Smeltz
2017 Legacy Scholar
Sponsored by West Shore, PA No. 2257
Penn State College of Medicine


"The Elks community has shown me the value in harvesting the potential of like-minded individuals. This manifests in my desire to tackle curriculum reform and develop medical school curricula that is inclusive of the needs and lived experiences of persons with disabilities. By educating future healthcare providers, together we can go further, and work to eradicate the healthcare disparities [persons with disabilities] face."

After losing her husband, Gunther, to a staph infection in November 2009, the late Lee Weigel wanted to improve the quality of healthcare in our country. To realize that goal, she partnered with the Elks National Foundation to endow the Gunther and Lee Weigel Medical School Scholarship, which helps Elks scholars pursue careers in medicine. For more information, visit

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