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News Release

Office of News and Information
Johns Hopkins University
3003 N. Charles Street, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21218-3843
Phone: (410) 516-7160 | Fax (410) 516-5251

May 1, 2002
CONTACT: Amy Cowles
(410) 516-7800

Elizabeth Tuffiash Wins
Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship

Elizabeth Tuffiash, a Johns Hopkins University senior from Randolph, N.J., has been selected as one of the first 50 Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Graduate Scholars, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation announced today.

The scholars, ages 19 to 50, receive up to $50,000 a year for up to six years to pursue graduate studies in their chosen field at an accredited university. Tuffiash will receive a degree in cognitive science later this month and plans to further her studies at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. She is one of seven Johns Hopkins University students chosen for this inaugural award.

Tuffiash, 21, says her motto is "making my opportunities rather than waiting for them to come to me." The trials in her life that she describes as "excruciating" have also motivated her as she has matured. Elizabeth sees herself today as a "happy, intelligent young woman with a future that I command rather than a future to which I am resigned." She intends to have a private medical practice, marriage and a family.

Working at a local zoo, Tuffiash once considered becoming a veterinarian. But driving home from a restaurant one night, her sister went into anaphylactic shock after eating almond cake. "Her throat closed completely. Administering mouth to mouth, I was credited with keeping her stable until the EMTs could take over," Tuffiash says. "I knew with a calm certainty that I wanted to spend the rest of my life helping people the way I helped my sister." Elizabeth's involvement in Student Pugwash, a science and medical ethics discussion group, introduced her to issues such as human cloning and the use of animals in lab research that will influence the choices she will be making as a physician, she says. Through research, she intends to find ways to restore lost brain function caused by stroke and other neurological pathologies. "As a doctor, I will also be an educator, helping other students the way I have been helped and someday have the honor of becoming someone else's mentor," Tuffiash says.

Tuffiash has participated in clinical teaching on neurologically impaired patients as a research assistant in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Department of Neurology. Tuffiash has also conducted laboratory research in the Department of Cognitive Science. She is a published co-author, and has peer-reviewed scientific articles, book chapters and abstracts in her chosen field.

Tuffiash is a member of several honor societies, including Phi Beta Kappa, the Golden Key Honor Society and Alpha Epsilon Delta. She's a member of the Johns Hopkins Undergraduate Ballroom Dance Club, is a homework helper and reading coach for a children's library called The Village Learning Place, and participated in the Emergency First Responder Course.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation identifies young people nationwide who have shown unique overall excellence, both in academic endeavors and in extracurricular activities. The purpose of the foundation is to reward young men and women for unusual intelligence, application, deportment, and character. The first class of recipients reflects a wide diversity of interests, all aiming to be the best in their fields.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is a private, independent foundation established by its namesake to help young people of exceptional promise reach their full potential. Cooke was a businessman, sportsman, and philanthropist who owned the Toronto Maple Leaf baseball club, the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team, and the Washington Redskins football team. He also owned the Chrysler Building in New York City, newspapers, magazines, radio stations, and cable television stations. When Cooke died in 1997, he left most of his fortune to the foundation, which has more than $500 million in assets.

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