The Healthline & NORD
Stronger Scholarship


There are 30 million Americans living with a rare disease, and approximately 133 million living with a chronic disease.

Here at Healthline, we create content about all things health and wellness — from how to spot symptoms of a serious condition, to healthy smoothie recipes, and more. With a reach of almost 80 million visitors per month, our mission is to help build a stronger, healthier world.

That’s why we’re teaming up with the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD), a patient advocacy organization dedicated to individuals with rare diseases and the organizations that serve them. NORD is committed to the identification, treatment, and cure of rare disorders through initiatives like their Student Club Program, which prepares students for success in health-related careers.

Together, we’re launching our 2018 scholarship program, which aims to assist and empower college students making a positive impact on rare and/or chronic diseases.

About the scholarship

This year’s scholarship is dedicated to the advancement of rare and chronic diseases, either through research, patient advocacy, raising awareness, or community building.

The program will award four students with a $5,000 scholarship each.

While a rare disease can also be chronic, and vice versa, the awarded scholarships will include:

  • Two scholarships awarded to recipients making an impact on rare diseases
  • Two scholarships awarded to recipients making an impact on chronic diseases

What’s a rare disease?

rare disease has a prevalence of fewer than 200,000 affected individuals in the United States. There are approximately 7,000 rare diseases currently identified. Rare diseases can be acute or chronic.

What's a chronic disease?

The World Health Organization defines a chronic disease as a health condition that’s of long duration, slow progression, and not passed on from person to person. A chronic disease can also be a rare disease.

Eligibility and how to apply

Requirements for eligibility include:

  • Current junior or senior in pursuit of an undergraduate degree (as of fall 2018)
  • Current U.S. resident
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 from most recent college transcript
  • Demonstrated involvement in the advancement of rare and/or chronic disease(s), either through research, patient advocacy, raising awareness, or community building


  • March 1 - May 1, 2018: Application opens
  • June 15, 2018: Winners notified
  • August 1, 2018: Funds distributed to University

How to apply:

  1. Click the “Apply Now” button (below) or go to to create an AIM account using your email address and chosen password.
  2. Log in to your AIM account to be taken directly to the Welcome page of The Healthline and NORD Stronger Scholarship Program application.
  3. Complete all required fields in the online application, and upload any required documents (such as GED certificate, high school transcript, college transcript, and/or ACT/SAT scores). As part of the application process, you’ll be required to upload answers to three essay questions.
  4. Click the Submit button on the Save/Submit page of the online application.

NOTE: The status “Complete” will display on your AIM home page when all forms have been submitted and all documents have been verified. Applicants are responsible for monitoring the progress of all application requirements to make sure their application is complete by 11:59 p.m. PST on May 1st. Late submissions will not be considered.

Application Opens March 1


The Healthline and NORD Stronger Scholarship Program is administered by International Scholarship and Tuition Services, Inc. (ISTS). For additional information or assistance with the application process, click here or call toll-free (855) 670-ISTS(4787). ISTS' office is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Central.

Please view answers to our frequently asked questions here.

Meet our 2017 scholars

Healthline’s 2017 Stronger Scholarship sponsored two students making strides in the type 2 diabetes community.

Jahmil Lacey, 2017 Stronger Scholar

“I can't even express how important it is to just be able to go into school and not have to worry about finances.”

Jahmil Lacey founded TrapMedicine, an organization that partners local barbershops with doctors and medical students to provide basic health checkups — including hypertension screenings, blood pressure readings, and blood sugar readings — on site.

Steffi Liu, 2017 Stronger Scholar

“I'm very honored for the scholarship. I'm excited to start on this project and hopefully reach a lot of people very soon.”

When Steffi Liu and her fiancé learned that his father had type 2 diabetes, they began preparing him healthy, home-cooked meals. His health drastically improved. Inspired by this change, Steffi is founding a company that delivers healthy, precooked meals to individuals with type 2 diabetes.

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