What We Do
The Lupus Inspiration Foundation for Excellence (L.I.F.E.) L.I.F.E was co-founded—in 2001—by Jodi Norton and Adina Gravit--two female undergraduate students-athletes. Both Jodi and Adina were driven by a deep passion to make a difference in the lives of those most commonly affected by lupus--college students! Each year the L.I.F.E. Scholarship Committee selects students to receive the merit-based L.I.F.E. Scholarship. Selected winners demonstrate both academic excellence and involvement in their community. They have chosen to continue their education despite the hardships brought on by Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) or more commonly known as—lupus!
Life is full of challenges. Students battling lupus understand this with greater magnitude than most. Every day they strive to survive while their own bodies fight against them causing inflammation and injury to vital organs and tissues. Lupus may present itself as anything from a chronic fever, joint pain, profound fatigue or skin rashes to recurring meningitis and kidney failure. Lupus can affect vessels and is the leading cause of stroke in young women.
College degrees are more difficult for individuals with lupus to obtain—many students must delay school or reduce their course load. Unfortunately, once a student is classified as part-time they no longer qualify for loans, financial aid or scholarships. To bridge this barrier, L.I.F.E. became the only non-profit to award scholarships to either full-time or part-time students. Today’s high tuition cost coupled with the increasing medical costs for chronic diseases places even more burden on college students with lupus.
Perhaps more important than financial assistance, a L.I.F.E Scholarship is a statement of recognition--acknowledging those who have overcome great challenges, which at times, seemed insurmountable. The support from donors makes a powerful statement that students with lupus can achieve their dreams and be successful. Our L.I.F.E Scholarship winners are willing to share their stories in an effort to inspire other students with lupus and become role-models to all those facing adversity.
As of 2017, L.I.F.E has provided merit-based scholarships to over 130 deserving students attending colleges and universities in 35 states.
Furthermore, this website provides resources for college students with lupus and their families coping with the disease. We hope that you find this information useful and welcome any suggestions or inquiries via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.