Jason Homza chosen as a 2017 Tillman Scholar Tuesday, June 13, 2017 Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine is proud to announce that Jason Homza of Kingston, a decorated veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps and a member of the school’s MD Class of 2020, has been chosen as a 2017 Tillman Scholar. Marie Tillman, board chair and co-founder of the Pat Tillman Foundation, made the announcement on June 8. In recognition of their service, leadership and potential, the 61 members of the newly selected class of scholars will receive more th an $1.1 million in scholarships to pursue their higher education and continue their service in the fields of medicine, law, business, policy, technology, education and the arts. Jason graduated from Wyoming Valley West High School just a few years after 9/11 and said he felt called to serve. He enlisted in the Marines and in 2006, was deployed to Haditha, Iraq – a hotly contested area — with 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marines, where he served as a section leader. When he returned home, Jason first became a science teacher at Scranton High, but felt drawn to medicine. “Medicine was always my dream career, but I never really took the opportunity to pursue it,” he said. “The more I learned about the unique and challenging healthcare needs of our community, the physician shortages and the impact that I can with a medical career, the more I leaned toward leaving my teaching job and starting medicine. After five years of teaching, I decided I had better make the switch before it was too late!” As for possible medical specialties, Jason said, “I have far too many interests right now to decide, but I am currently doing research in prostate cancer radiation therapy and also have an interest in surgery.” He said he is grateful to Pat Tillman Foundation for making his dreams possible. Jason is also the recipient of the prestigious Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation scholarship. “As the next generation of private and public sector leaders, the Tillman Scholars are tackling challenges across national security, healthcare, technology, civil rights and education,” said Mrs. Tillman. “They believe their best years of service to our country are still ahead of them, and they are committed to making a direct impact to strengthen communities at home and around the world. We are proud to support this newest class of Tillman Scholars in their drive to serve and empower others as our country’s next leaders.” The Tillman Scholars Program Founded in 2008, the Tillman Scholars program supports our nation’s active-duty service members, veterans and military spouses by investing in their higher education. The scholarship covers direct study-related expenses, including tuition and fees, books and living expenses, for scholars who are pursuing undergraduate, graduate or professional degrees as a full-time student at a public or private, U.S.-based accredited institution. For the full list of 2017 Tillman Scholars, with the service branches, institutions and fields of study from which they were selected, visit pattillmanfoundation.org/2017class. TCMC Media Contact: Elizabeth ZygmuntDirector of Media and Public Relations Office: 570-504-9687On Call: 570-687-9703 Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine is committed to non-discrimination in all employment and educational opportunities.