Continuing with a career that has become equal parts music and philanthropy, Big & Rich’s Big Kenny recently made a generous donation, through the Hope Through Healing Hands Foundation (HTHH), to the College of Public Health at East Tennessee State University (ETSU). The donation supported the creation of the “The Alphin Scholarship to Promote the Integration of Research and Environmental Education in Appalachia” (ASPIRE Appalachia).
ASPIRE Appalachia’s primary goal is to provide two students at the College of Public Health the opportunity to complete their required field placement by working in an Appalachian community. The purpose of these placements is to be consistent with Big Kenny’s and HTHH’s shared altruistic vision of supporting people in the context of who they are and where they live.
On Thursday (3/18) Big Kenny presented his inaugural ASPIRE scholarship to Jodi Southerland and Jenny Hunt on the belief that by helping these two students continue their missions they will, in turn, help countless other individuals throughout their careers.
From Greene County in the Appalachia region of east Tennessee, Southerland is a Doctor of Public Health student in the Community Health Track at Eastern Tennessee State University. Her focus is on the health challenges facing the rural elderly.
Hunt is a Master of Public Health Student in the Health Service Administration track and is from Cocke County in the Appalachia region of east Tennessee. She will carry out her ASPIRE Appalachia work with some aspect of prescription drug abuse, a significant public health problem in the coalfield areas of central Appalachia.