MSJ’s PA Program, Mara Prickett, PA-C, PA Program faculty, and Rachael Bauer, PA-S2, PA student, were Awarded a “Be the Change” Grant through the NCCPA Health Foundation.

pa be the change 2024


Rachael Bauer, PA-S2, PA student, with Mara Prickett, PA-C, PA Program faculty, were recently awarded a "Be the Change" grant through the NCCPA Health Foundation. This grant funded a service project at the Santa Maria Health Fair on April 13th, focusing on educating children about heart-healthy snacks and exercises/activities.


Hear more about the “Be the Change” Grant through the NCCPA Health Foundation and the Santa Maria Health Fair from Rachael Bauer:



My mentor (Professor Mara Prickett, PA-C) and I (Rachael Bauer, PA-S2) applied for the "Be the CHANGE" grant offered through nccPA Health Foundation in the hope of bringing my project idea "Kickstart Healthy Hearts" to life. Professor Prickett helped facilitate my dream by aiding me in encouragement, coaching me on how to write an exquisite proposal with excellent peer review, and supported helping me bring this project to life at the Santa Maria Free Health Fair on April 13th, 2024. On this date, we will be showcasing our project in an effort to bring awareness to health and wellness for children in the Price Hill community. 


How we applied:

We applied directly on the nccPA Health Foundation website. We chose "Be the CHANGE" because this particular grant (out of many they offer) encompassed all of the elements we felt were appropriate to help us bring this dream project to life and to bring awareness to the PA profession. The application and information are listed here:


Abstract of our project:

The objective of the “Kickstart Healthy Hearts” project is to bring awareness of health and wellness to the children of the local community in an educational and creative way. With the increasing prevalence of sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy habits in children, it is essential to promote physical activity and instill healthy habits early on. Unfortunately, heart disease is the number one leading cause of death in both men and women. “Kickstart Healthy Hearts” plans educational activities that are enjoyable and rewarding for the participating children.  This will not only spark their interest to increase their physical fitness, but it will also prime their interest on how to stay heart-healthy throughout their lifespan. The “Kickstart Healthy Hearts” project specifically aims to educate lower socioeconomic areas in the local community to raise awareness about the dangers of sedentary lifestyles and how to become healthier in an inclusive manner. The desired outcome of the project is to educate families by introducing health and wellness in a style that meets the needs of the community where it stands currently.


Santa Maria Health Fair:

The turnout was tremendous and we had an exercise station, healthy food and bad food game, heart model, human body model, and stethoscope station (to promote interest in youth for the PA profession), and resources for healthy foods and the importance of heart health, safe walking paths, and coloring pages. 


We had a couple of translators there who offered to volunteer to make our project as inclusive as possible.


Our PA Program Director, Jen Garrett, MPAS, PA-C, brought her trained therapy dog  "Mabel" (#PetPartnersofGreaterCincinnati)  to the event to spread some joy to the children at the event as well 😊




A huge thanks to nccPA Health Foundation who made this all possible for through the BetheCHANGE grant scholarship!