(West Plains) – Local physician Dr. Scott Roush will receive this year’s Distinguished Alumni Award during Missouri State University Alumni Association’s annual spring picnic for alumni and friends at 6 p.m. Thursday, May 3, at the West Plains Civic Center exhibit hall.
The award recognizes a Missouri State University alumnus who has made extraordinary achievements in his or her personal and professional endeavors and has shown notable success in his/her profession or business, loyalty to the university and outstanding contributions to society.
“It is so fitting to recognize Dr. Scott Roush with this alumni honor from the university,” said Missouri State-West Plains Director of Development Elizabeth Grisham. “Dr. Roush started his academic career on this campus and then returned home to establish a successful medical practice. His contributions to medicine and to our community bring honor to our university. We are proud to call him one of our own.”
Roush graduated from West Plains High School in 1987 and enrolled at Missouri State-West Plains in fall 1988 with the intent to follow in his father and grandfather’s footsteps and enter the teaching field. But in fall 1994, after receiving Bachelor of Science in Education from Missouri State University in Springfield and teaching several years at area schools, he discovered he had a desire to help people in an entirely different way and returned to Missouri State-West Plains to begin taking classes for medical school.
He applied to several area medical schools and eventually chose the University of Health Sciences-College of Osteopathic Medicine in Kansas City, Mo., where he completed his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree in 2001. He completed his residency in family medicine and obstetrics at Cox Medical Center in Springfield and returned home in 2004 with an associate to open Ozarks Family Care.
His nominator for the award pointed out that Roush’s plans always were to “return to this area and to make a ‘true difference’ in rural health. His goal after seven years of practice ‘back home’ remains the same – to make a difference in rural health care.”
In addition to his practice, Roush is the director of medical education at Ozarks Medical Center in West Plains and the rural track medical director of the Southeast Missouri Area Health Education Center (AHEC) in West Plains, a part of the University of Missouri School of Medicine’s Rural Track Clerkship Program. He also serves as medical director for Three Rivers Hospice in West Plains, Mountain Grove and Licking and was a founding member of the Primary Care Health Improvement Project. As part of the project, he mentors medical students who are performing their residency and internships within the confines of his rural clinic.
“Dr. Roush is a perfect example of a motto and sign endorsed by the university, ‘Stay Close and Go Far,’” his nominator said. “He is an individual who makes a valuable addition to the quality of life in our community, and his desire to serve as a mentor for medical students is a most inspiring attribute.”
The annual picnic is free and open to all Missouri State University alumni and friends; however, reservations should be made prior to the event, organizers said. For more information or to make reservations, call the Missouri State-West Plains development office at 417-255-7240.