Western University of Health Sciences Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) second-year student LaSonya Davis is one of 11 students in the Los Angeles area who will receive a Miller- Lawrence Medical and Dental Society Scholarship.

A banquet honoring the students will be held Saturday, Dec. 4, 2010, during the 5th Annual Miller-Lawrence Scholarship and Recognition Dinner at The Grand Event Center in Long Beach, Calif.

The scholarship is awarded to minority medical, dental, nursing and allied health students while mentoring them in their chosen fields primarily in the Los Angeles region.

Over the past four years, Miller-Lawrence has awarded more than $35,000 in scholarships. During this year’s banquet, more than $19,000 will be distributed.

The society, part of the National Medical Association (NMA), is a group of about 150 health care professionals who mostly serve the Los Angeles area to promote public health and to improve the general welfare of the community, with emphasis on minorities and the disadvantaged in underserved urban areas, according to the society’s website.

Davis said she is thankful she applied for the scholarship and that the organization’s mission and objective lined up with her own goals.

“”I am very excited about this award, and it is a great honor for my family and me,”” said Davis, who plans to use the scholarship to help fund her dissertation.

The focus of her doctoral work and dissertation will be cardiovascular risk awareness and prevention in underserved African Americans. Ellen Daroszewski, PhD, APRN, professor and director of the DNP program at WesternU, is her chair.

“”This is monumental,”” Daroszewski said. “”She is the first WesternU student to receive this prestigious recognition. She is committed to improving the cardiovascular health in underserved African-American communities where she lives and practices, by developing partnerships and innovative participative programs with local churches.””

Davis, a single mother of four, is an occupational health clinical coordinator for West Hills Hospital in West Hills, Calif. She is originally from Virginia, and at age 11 moved with her family to Oxnard, Calif. She received her Master in Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner from California State University, Fresno in 2004.