Valeant Dermatology Aspire Higher announces local scholarship winner

With many students heading back to college campuses around the nation, Valeant Dermatology, a division of Valeant Pharmaceuticals North America LLC, recently announced the winners of its Aspire Higher Scholarship Program.

Nine undergraduate and graduate students were selected from a pool of 970 applicants and awarded up to $10,000 each toward tuition expenses for the coming school year. Among the winners is Neela Persad of Homestead who will attend Columbia University.

The winners were chosen based on a written essay describing the impact a dermatologic condition had on their life and the role their healthcare practitioner played in treating their condition. Three scholarships were awarded in each of three categories: Undergraduate Scholar Awards for those pursuing and an undergraduate degree, Graduate Scholar Awards for students pursuing a graduate degree and

Today’s Woman Scholar Awards for students who are mothers and pursuing any higher-education degree. Persad received a Graduate Scholar Award.

“Valeant congratulates the winners of this year’s scholarship program and thanks all of the applicants for sharing their personal stories of how their lives were affected by their skin condition and the clinician who helped with its treatment,” said Eric Abramson, Valeant Dermatology’s senior vice president and general manager.

“We are proud to support these outstanding and dedicated students in achieving their academic ambitions,” Abramson added.

“There were so many compelling stories and deserving applicants that it was extremely difficult to choose the winners,” said Linda Stein Gold, MD, director, Dermatology Clinical Research, Henry Ford Health System, one of three judges of the scholarship awards. “It’s truly inspiring to see how they dealt with their condition and turned challenging circumstances into something positive in their lives.”

Enrollment information for the 2017 scholarship program will be announced early next year. For more information, visit More information about Valeant can be found at

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