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Scholarship winners Isabella Toth and Soraya Chinloy share their personal battles with cancer.
DALLAS – Today, the national law firm of Baron & Budd announced that it has selected Isabella Toth and Soraya Chinloy as the winners of the Mesothelioma Cancer Victims Memorial Scholarship. Each winner will receive a $2,500 scholarship paid directly to the financial aid accounts at their universities.
Applicants were asked to submit a written or video essay about how cancer has impacted their lives. Isabella Toth’s winning written essay was selected after a competitive review by the Baron & Budd Scholarship committee. Her remarkably moving essay detailed her ongoing battle with Hodgkin’s lymphoma and how the side effects of losing her hair from chemotherapy took a seemingly negative experience and turned it into a positive outlook filled with humor and hope when she decided to start an entertaining bucket hat collection that would bring joy to everyone around her. Toth explained how her search for a solution to hide her balding head turned into a way to connect with people and make them smile.
In her essay Toth wrote, “Whenever I wore my bucket hats, complete strangers in the street would laugh and compliment them. The nurses and fellow patients at the hospital would smile at the ridiculous patterns resting on my head. When I saw delight illuminate peoples’ faces as their eyes moved up to the bucket with a brim, I forgot about my disease, the nausea, the pain, even if for a brief moment. I knew I had found a new sense of self. My bucket hats were a reflection of my buoyant, extroverted personality. I didn’t need hair to be the person I always was, and my collection was a unique way of sharing this with everyone around me. Instead of seeing a bald head and grieving for a young person with cancer, people saw a cheerful bucket hat that made them smile. For me, this felt extraordinary: having the power to turn something unfortunate, namely a hairless scalp and subsequently a reminder of my disease, into something that brought joy not only to myself, but to others as well.”
Toth will be attending Northwestern University where she will pursue a degree in biomedical engineering with the hope of improving cancer treatments for patients in the future.
Additionally, Soraya Chinloy was selected as the video essay winner. Her video focused on her own struggles with myelodysplastic syndrome and how it has shaped her faith and outlook on life. Chinloy described the physical and emotional challenges she has faced during her journey with the disorder and explains how she has remained thankful during the experience.
“I am so thankful that cancer has made me into a strong and beautiful woman,” exclaimed Chinloy. She went on in her video to say, “I desire to bring compassion to the world, to help those in need, to help people that have gone through trauma, to impart hope, love and God’s faith into people.” Chinloy is attending Palm Beach Atlantic University where she is pursuing a degree in the psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner program.
In her letters of recommendation, one colleague describes Chinloy as “an honest, sincere, and giving woman” while another colleague says she “has shown character traits of kindness, compassion, and humility” in her service towards others.
“Isabella and Soraya are inspirational in the way they maintain such a positive outlook, both finding purpose through their experiences to help others. We wish them much success in all their endeavors and we are proud to help support their education,” said President and Managing Shareholder Russell Budd.
The Mesothelioma Cancer Victims Memorial Scholarship was established to honor the legacy of the thousands of Americans who are diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer every year. For more information about the Baron & Budd Mesothelioma Cancer Victims Memorial Scholarship, please visit baronandbudd.com/mesothelioma-lawyer/scholarships/.
ABOUT BARON & BUDD, P.C.
Baron & Budd, P.C. is among the largest and most accomplished plaintiffs’ law firms in the country. With more than 45 years of experience, Baron & Budd has the expertise and resources to handle complex litigation throughout the United States. As a law firm that takes pride in remaining at the forefront of litigation, Baron & Budd has spearheaded many significant cases for hundreds of entities and thousands of individuals. Since the firm was founded in 1977, Baron & Budd has achieved substantial national acclaim for its work on cutting-edge litigation, trying hundreds of cases to verdict and settling tens of thousands of cases. Baron & Budd and its legal experts across the country pursue litigation to protect people and their communities from the effects of dangerous and diverse issues including: harmful pharmaceuticals as well as highly addictive opioids, defective medical devices, asbestos and mesothelioma, environmental contamination including delivering ground-breaking settlements for the California wildfire victims, e-cigarette manufacturers, fraudulent and illegal banking practices, motor vehicle manufacturing and accidents, False Claims Act cases, and other consumer fraud issues.