Meet the 2019 Scholars

Get to know the hopes, dreams, and talents of this year's winners.

Lauren L.

Undergraduate Recipient

"Choose one inspirational quote or motto that has helped you throughout your journey with cystic fibrosis. How do you live by your quote or motto and how has it motivated you to accomplish your goals?"

I often think about how great my life would be without Cystic Fibrosis. But, then I think about how different I would be. Bernice Johnson Reagon said, “Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they’re supposed to help you discover who you are.” I hate taking antibiotics, doctor appointments, and having to do treatments three times a day. I’ve had more sinus surgeries, bronchoscopies, and PICC lines than I can count. And the struggle of getting sick after you just got healthy again is discouraging. But, I believe that these challenges have made me the person I am today. Cystic Fibrosis is supposed to be something that makes you weak, but it only makes me stronger. Over the last couple of months, I had to work on a research project with my classmates and present it to over 500 people in school. I was looking forward to it, but I became very sick. My teacher had given me the option of not doing the project. I did not take her offer. While I fought the illness in the hospital, I also fought to complete the project and present it. I could have taken the easy way out, and I could have put my life on hold while I was sick. But, I didn’t. I overcame the adversity that was placed upon me. Cystic Fibrosis has shaped me into a strong and graceful young woman, who will never back down and never let anything keep her from her goals.

Lauren L.'s Artwork

Lauren L.'s Achievements

  • I am a member of the National Honors Society at my school. Our chapter is very competitive and rigorous. We are expected to work events at school, complete over 60 hours of community service per year, and uphold our GPAs.
  • I am a student in the Scholars Center for the Humanities. As a freshman, I applied to be invited into the four year program at my school, which included taking rigorous courses that were not offered to other students that are not a part of the program.
  • I am a member of DECA, a business club. We compete against other schools in New Jersey. I helped start the club as a junior. Junior year I qualified for state, but did not place in regional events. This past year I placed 7th place in my regional events, where I had 200 other competitors.
  • I played field hockey throughout high school. I held a leadership position as a sophomore on the JV team. As a senior I also held a leadership position on varsity.
  • I played lacrosse freshman and sophomore year. As a freshman, I made the JV team which was a big deal since my school has three levels of lacrosse, one of them being specifically for freshmen.
  • I volunteer with the CARE club at my school. We plan different community service events for local charities. Recently I helped organize gift baskets to entertain children in the pediatric unit at St. Peter's University Hospital in New Brunswick.
  • I volunteer with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. I help raise awareness for CF in my community and on social media. I also lead a Great Strides team and raise money for the event every year.
  • I tutor underclassmen at school.
  • I work at a restaurant as a hostess on the weekends.
  • During the week, I babysit my neighbor's four little kids everyday.