courtesy photo
Kern and Dr. Michael West of the Creek Nation Indian Health Clinic. Kern shadowed Dr. West during the summer, solidifying his interests in medicine.

Choctaw Student Earns Dual Scholarships to Duke

Bret Moss, Choctaw Nation SAP
5/17/14

Jordan Kern, a student of Henryetta High School has recently been accepted to Duke University’s class of 2018, where he will begin his education in the fall. 

Accompanying him on his path is a full financial scholarship provided by Duke, valued at just over $240,000. To make a sweet deal more interesting, Kern has also been named a Gates Millennium Scholar.

The Gates Millennium Scholars Program, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, only selects 1,000 of the exponentially larger number of those who apply. As one of those outstanding few, Kern will be provided with good-through-graduation funding, allowing him to complete his doctorate. 

Kern, a member of the Choctaw Nation and first student of Henryetta High to earn the Gates, plans to peruse a medical degree on his way to becoming a pediatrician. The combination of the Duke and Gates scholarships will allow him to place full focus on those aspirations.

His inclination towards children’s medicine began when his brother, Benton Kern was diagnosed with chromosome two deletion upon his birth. As Benton grew, Kern’s care for his brother and those with conditions similar grew as well. “He just sparked a passion,” Kern stated as he described how his relationship with his brother affected his outlook on the future.

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