Orange Park teenager beats cancer then gets scholarship to NYU

ORANGE PARK, Fla. — Today, Action News Jax introduces you to Aya Osman. She’s an Orange Park resident and a recent High School Graduate. She’s also a cancer survivor, who received some help from the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation. A foundation that works to tackle childhood cancer.

Aya specifically got help from the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation in the form of scholarship money.


Aya has big dreams. She told us that since the age of 12, she knew she was destined to be a neurologist once she finished high school and made her way to a prestigious university.

[DOWNLOAD: Free Action News Jax app for alerts as news breaks]

That dream was almost derailed when she was diagnosed with cancer, but she didn’t let that stop her from living her best life.

“My older sister flew in from college, she noticed a weird lump and I was like that’s a cause for concern so once we got it checked out it was the worst news possible, cancer,” Osman said.

Aya Osman is 18 years old, and a recent Ridgeview High School graduate in Orange Park. She graduated Summa Cum Laude and her graduation gown was decked out in a number of cords and sashes to showcase her accomplishments.

Aya was President of Beta Club, a member of Mu Alpha Theta, Science Honor Society, debate and multicultural club. As well as earth club, college readiness, Future Business leaders of America, academic team and Senior board. If that wasn’t enough, Aya made her way to Spanish honor society, was an IB diploma candidate and played soccer and ran track her freshman year.

Aya is also a cancer survivor and is now 2 years into remission.

“It was malignant, the scans were necessary, but it was also quite scary,” Osman said.

Osman says she went through one round of chemo every 3 weeks for 6 months. But she says she wasn’t scared for long. She used her love for playing the piano as a distraction.

“I’m pretty good at making situations lighthearted so I was cracking jokes here and there,” Osman said.

Everything changed for Osman when introduced to the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation through mail. It’s a non-profit that helps families tackle childhood cancer with financial, emotional and practical support.

Osman is one of the foundation’s aid recipients.

“It was a hard time, but I decided to focus on my mind through focusing on my hobbies,” Osman said.

Osman has since pushed her way through school and will be heading to New York University this August on a scholarship to major in biology. She says she has always been fascinated with science and the human body for as long as she can remember.

[SIGN UP: Action News Jax Daily Headlines Newsletter]

Osman credits her mother for a lot of her educational success through her cancer diagnosis. She says her mom brought her a laptop to the hospital everyday she was in chemo to make sure she wouldn’t fall behind in the classroom.

If anyone needs information on how to apply for a scholarship through the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation visit the following web link. The deadline to do so is always early January through Mar. 31 according to a spokeswoman with the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation.

”Draft Draft Night in Duval: Thursday at 7PM on FOX30

Most Read