Hannah Groth

A Promising Beginning

Hannah Groth graduated high school in May 2019, brimming with excitement about her future at the University of South Florida, where she’d been accepted into the honors college. With a deep interest in medicine, she dreamed of one day becoming a doctor.

A Sudden Turn

That summer was filled with sunny beach days and cherished moments with friends and family. However, it was also marked by an unexpected health scare. Hannah developed a persistent cough and a sinus infection. Despite taking cough medicine and resting as advised, the symptoms lingered. When she noticed a swollen lymph node in her neck, doctors suggested a specialist visit, but there was no immediate alarm.

Diagnosis

The lymph node continued to grow, causing Hannah Groth significant discomfort. Eventually, she sought emergency care. Just days after starting her freshman year, at age 18, Hannah was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This rare cancer affects the lymphatic system and is most common in young adults, particularly females.

The word cancer is scary, my dad passed away when I was 8, my uncle when I was 15, and my grandmother when I was 18. My sister Judy had a major health scare with a benign ovarian tumor. Our family is all too familiar with how frightening any diagnosis can be.

Hannah Groth

SAMFund Grant Recipient, Florida

Treatment and Challenges

Hannah was immediately admitted to Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital for a biopsy. Doctors revealed that the cancer had likely been slow-growing throughout her senior year of high school. She had to withdraw from her classes just as her college journey began.

Despite the upheaval, Hannah persevered in her studies, determined to graduate on time. Her resolve was tested further when she developed Avascular Necrosis (AVN), a painful side effect of chemotherapy. AVN led to over 25 surgeries in 5 years, including bilateral hip replacements and multiple decompressions of her knees and shoulders. Undeterred by these setbacks, Hannah graduated college on time and was accepted to the University of South Florida’s graduate program.

Impact of EMF’s SAMFund Grant

Amidst these challenges, Hannah discovered EMF’s SAMFund while searching for graduate school financial aid. She applied and received a grant for $4,000, which played a crucial role in her continued education. Inspired by her experiences, she decided to specialize in epidemiology, aiming to identify risk factors for diseases and improve preventative healthcare.

My cancer experience fueled my drive to pursue higher education. I was given a second chance thanks to modern medicine. By becoming an epidemiologist, I hope to help my community prevent and manage diseases.

Hannah Groth

SAMFund Grant Recipient, Florida

Hannah Today

Today, Hannah is pursuing a Master of Public Health with a concentration in Epidemiology at the University of South Florida. She also participated in EMF’s 2024 Distance Challenge as part of the SAMFund Community Team, raising awareness for funding cancer research. Here’s what she shared on her participant page:

Hi! I’m Hannah, a four-year Hodgkin’s lymphoma survivor and an EMF SAMFund grant recipient. This support enabled me to continue my education. Now, I’m studying for my Master of Public Health to help our community’s wellness. Raising awareness for cancer research is incredibly important to me, as no one should have to endure this disease. Together, we can work towards a cancer-free future.

Hannah Groth

SAMFund Grant Recipient, Florida

Hannah Groth’s journey from a high school graduate to a determined survivor and aspiring epidemiologist is a testament to resilience and the transformative power of support. Her story underscores the impact of EMF supporters who make dreams like Hannah’s possible.

About EMF’s SAMFund Grant Program

Due to the high costs associated with treatment and survivorship, young adults experience financial toxicity at a greater level than any other age group.  SAMFund grants help to alleviate the financial burden resulting from cancer treatment.

Thank you to donors for supporting EMF’s SAMFund Grant Program. Because of your generosity, we are helping young adult cancer survivors build bridges to help them get where they were intended to go before cancer disrupted their lives.

What SAMFund Grant Recipients Say

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Make Miracles

Join us in the fight against cancer and be part of the community that is making miracles happen today. Your donation is an investment in our Innovation and Discovery Funds, which invests in life-saving cancer research, and EMF's SAMFund, which provides financial assistance for young adult cancer survivors.

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