Dr. Clark and Crystal Allen
Dr. Clark and Crystal Allen are ensuring that Idaho State University's next generation of brightest and best have an easier time receiving a quality education without worrying about the financial burdens.
"We created our scholarship to assist local students in their pursuit of a career in nursing, physician assistant studies, or school counseling majors. We both remembered what it was like to struggle with finances as college students, and setting up a fund to help others in our position only seemed natural," Crystal said.
Preference is given to those applicants from Idaho who have a desire to stay and practice in the state.
Dr. Allen grew up in North Carolina and Virginia, earning his bachelor's degree at the University of Virginia. He attended medical school at the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond. Following his residency in neurosurgery, he moved to Idaho in 2000. He is the co-owner of Spine Idaho, LLC with offices in Pocatello, Blackfoot and Idaho Falls. He is a member of the American Board of Neurological Surgeons, National Association of Spine Surgeons and The American Association of Neurological Surgery.
Crystal grew up in Pocatello and Rhode Island, attending college at the University of Rhode Island, earning her bachelor's degree in communicative disorders. She received her master's degree in counseling from Idaho State University. She worked as a counselor at Aberdeen High School before starting her family.
Clark and Crystal first came up with the idea of a scholarship for ISU students when they were engaged in 2003. Instead of gifts, they encouraged friends and family to donate towards their new scholarship fund in lieu of a wedding present. From there, the first donations provided the base for the Crystal and Clark Allen Scholarship Fund.
"One of our first scholarship winners was a young woman in the physician assistant program. A few years later, the graduate, now employed by Clark, was cleaning out her college papers and found her old scholarship award letter. Without anyone realizing it we hired our own scholarship winner! She is still a valued employee today," Crystal said.
Clark and Crystal also provided the lead gift to fund the Counseling Merit Scholarship Endowment when Crystal served on the Kasiska College of Health Professions Dean's Advisory Board.
The Allens are the proud parents of two children, Kristina and Connor, and enjoy spending time as a family and traveling to other parts of the country as well as within Idaho.