Dennis Youngs was shocked and grateful to learn he is this year’s recipient of the most prestigious national scholarship through the Benevolent Protective Order of the Elks. The Gunther & Lee Weigel Medical School Scholarship provides students with $26,000 for their first year of medical school.

“From the local Penn Yan Lodge to the National level, the Elks organization has blessed me,” says Dennis. “I not only received an extremely generous amount of financial help for both my undergraduate studies and now medical school, but have been given guidance and support that developed me into the person I am today. I would not be who I am if it were not for the Elks.”

Dennis, the son of Steve & Lisa Youngs of Penn Yan, is studying medicine at SUNY Upstate Medical University, after graduating with a  degree in Biochemistry from Syracuse University. Penn Yan Elks Lodge Exalted Ruler Claudia Baldwin believes this is the first time this scholarship has been awarded to any medical student outside of an Ivy League school.

“From the bottom of my heart, thank you to the Elks Organization,” says Dennis. “I look forward to the day when I can start a scholarship fund to help more students achieve their dreams in higher education. Never give up, and keep working!”