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May 8, 2006

Senior Sarah Broker honored for work with homeless

UCSC senior Sarah Broker has received a Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors Outstanding County Volunteers Award.

Photo of Sarah Broker

Ron Dudley, benefits advocate at the Homeless Persons Health Project, and UCSC senior Sarah Broker, at the ceremony recognizing Broker as a recipient of a Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors Outstanding County Volunteers Award.
Photo: Caroline Berger

Broker, a health-sciences major, was recognized for her work at the Homeless Persons Health Project, where she volunteers through her UCSC health sciences internship.

Broker's internship is part of a federally funded demonstration project to help eligible, chronically homeless individuals secure Supplemental Security Income Benefits. Broker researches and documents clients' information on their disability, and medical and work history, and then writes briefs which are forwarded to a judge for final determination on the benefits award. As a result of Broker's work, judges have found in favor of four clients who were previously denied benefits.

Students majoring in health sciences at UCSC are required to do an internship in a community health care setting and become proficient in Spanish, in addition to taking the standard science courses required for admission to medical school. The Spanish language and internship requirements make the program unique in the UC system.

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