CALIFORNIA, Dec. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The costly treatment associated with childhood cancer can lead to long-term financial challenges, including questions of how to afford higher education. Northwestern Mutual is committed to helping children and families affected by this disease achieve their college dreams. As part of these efforts, California residents Sana Moezzi and Ethan Salmeron have been selected as 2020 recipients through the company's Childhood Cancer Survivor & Sibling Scholarship program.
The scholarship program was developed to alleviate the financial strain on families that often results from expensive cancer treatments by helping to fund school tuition and fees. Forty-three students, the largest cohort to date, have each been awarded a $5,000 renewable scholarship (for a total of $10,000) through this year's program.
Sana, a childhood cancer survivor, was diagnosed with cancer during her senior year of high school. A determination to help others enduring similar circumstances inspired Sana to persevere through her own difficult journey. At age 18, she became the youngest wish granter for The Make-A-Wish Foundation. Through this leadership role, Sana has been able to grant the wishes of other children diagnosed with cancer. She is currently studying business administration at the University of San Diego.
"Cancer stripped away the person I once was and sculpted me into the person I have grown to truly be, a survivor. Since being diagnosed, I am dedicated to living life to its fullest," said Sana Moezzi. "I am now someone who understands more deeply, appreciates more quickly, loves more openly and lives more passionately. As a wish granter, I am proud be part of a community that gives back so generously."
The second California recipient, Ethan's, younger brother, Jaden, was diagnosed with leukemia when they were both children. He experienced confusion, sadness and anger, unable to understand why his younger brother was battling cancer. As a result, Ethan decided to focus on factors in life he could control, including school, friendships and family support. Jaden's cancer battle allowed Ethan to discover his passion for giving back to others as he volunteers at CoachArt and Camp Ronald McDonald. Currently, Ethan is pursuing a major in entrepreneurship at the Loyola Marymount University.
"I look for volunteer opportunities that better the lives of those around me. I find so much joy in bringing smiles to people's faces," said Ethan Salmeron. "My brother's battle with cancer marks a difficult time in my family's life, yet those struggles are no longer weaknesses, but rather strengths."
Since 2012, Northwestern Mutual's Childhood Cancer Program has focused on advancing childhood cancer research, providing family and patient support and serving as a resource to families managing the long-term effects of cancer treatment. With the support of Northwestern Mutual employees and financial advisors nationwide, the company has contributed more than $30 million and funded over 400,000 hours of research through the program.
Applications for the 2021 scholarship program are open now through Feb. 1, 2021. Selection results are expected by May 2021. To learn more and apply, visit:
About Northwestern Mutual Foundation The mission of the Northwestern Mutual Foundation is to improve the lives of children and families in need. The Foundation has given more than $386 million since its inception in 1992 and is designed to create lasting impact in the communities where the company's employees and financial representatives live and work. We accomplish this by combining financial support, volunteerism, thought leadership and convening community partners to deliver the best outcomes. Our efforts are focused nationally on curing childhood cancer, and locally on education, neighborhoods and making our hometown of Milwaukee a great destination. Visit Northwestern Mutual Foundation to learn more.
About Northwestern Mutual Northwestern Mutual has been helping people and businesses achieve financial security for more than 160 years. Through a holistic planning approach, Northwestern Mutual combines the expertise of its financial professionals with a personalized digital experience and industry-leading products to help its clients plan for what's most important. With $290.3 billion in total assets, $29.9 billion in revenues, and $1.9 trillion worth of life insurance protection in force, Northwestern Mutual delivers financial security to more than 4.6 million people with life, disability income and long-term care insurance, annuities, and brokerage and advisory services. The company manages more than $161 billion of investments owned by its clients and held or managed through its wealth management and investment services businesses. Northwestern Mutual ranks 102 on the 2020 FORTUNE 500 and is recognized by FORTUNE® as one of the "World's Most Admired" life insurance companies in 2020.
Northwestern Mutual is the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company (NM)(life and disability insurance, annuities, and life insurance with long-term care benefits) and its subsidiaries in Milwaukee, WI. Subsidiaries include Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC (investment brokerage services), broker-dealer, registered investment adviser, member FINRA and SIPC; the Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company® (investment advisory and trust services), a federal savings bank; and Northwestern Long Term Care Insurance Company.