The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) today announced awards to 52 schools of nursing that will comprise the final cohort of RWJF’s prestigious New Careers in Nursing Scholarship Program (NCIN). For the 2014-2015 academic year, the schools will receive grants to support traditionally underrepresented students who are making a career switch to nursing through an accelerated baccalaureate or master’s degree program. NCIN is a program of RWJF and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).
“New Careers in Nursing has made amazing strides in helping schools of nursing recruit and retain diverse students in these competitive and rigorous accelerated degree programs,” said David Krol, MD, MPH, FAAP, RWJF senior program officer. “Through supporting these institutions, NCIN is working to increase the diversity of our nursing workforce, while also assisting schools of nursing in making their institutions more inclusive. The leadership, mentoring, and other support these institutions provide are helping to prepare a diverse nursing workforce able to meet the challenges associated with building a culture of health in our nation.”
Each NCIN Scholar has already earned a bachelor’s degree in another field, and is making a transition to nursing through an accelerated nursing degree program, which prepares students to assume the role of registered nurse in as little as 12-18 months.
In addition to a $10,000 scholarship, NCIN scholars receive other support to help them meet the demands of an accelerated degree program. All NCIN grantee schools maintain a leadership program and a mentoring program for their scholars, as well as a pre-entry immersion program to assist scholars in learning essential study, test-taking, and other skills needed to succeed in their programs of study.
“Nursing and nursing education are at a critical juncture right now, and NCIN’s exemplary approach to supporting nursing schools is helping to strengthen both,” said AACN President Eileen Breslin, PhD, RN, FAAN. “NCIN’s creative, innovative, and responsive approach to providing grantees with tools to ensure academic success will result in lasting changes at nursing schools nationwide. The NCIN program has truly raised the bar for recruitment, retention, mentoring, and leadership development for nursing students from groups underrepresented in nursing.”
Since 2008, the NCIN program has distributed 3,517 scholarships to students at 130 unique schools of nursing. This year, funding for 400 scholarships was granted to 52 schools of nursing.
In this seventh year of the program, the following schools were awarded grants:
College of St. Scholastica
Georgia Regents University
Medical University of South Carolina
MidAmerica Nazarene University
Mount Carmel Health System Foundation
New Jersey City University
New York University
Oregon Health & Science University
Rush University Medical Center
Saint Louis University
Samuel Merritt University
Seton Hall University
Southern Connecticut State University
Stony Brook Foundation
SUNY Downstate Medical Center
The University of Texas at El Paso
Thomas Edison State College
Thomas Jefferson University
University of Cincinnati
University of Delaware
University of Hawaii at Manoa
University of Maryland, Baltimore
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
University of Miami
University of Michigan, Flint
University of Minnesota
University of Mississippi Medical Center
University of Missouri, Kansas City
University of Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh
University of Rochester
University of San Diego
University of South Alabama
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Valdosta State University
Winston-Salem State University
The 2010 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health, recommends increasing the proportion of nurses with a baccalaureate degree or higher, and increasing the diversity of students to create a nursing workforce prepared to meet the health care demands of diverse populations across the lifespan. NCIN is helping to advance those recommendations by enabling schools to expand student capacity and by encouraging more diversity.
By bringing more nurses into the profession at the baccalaureate and master’s degree levels, the NCIN program also helps to address the nation’s nurse faculty shortage. This trend is reflected in the NCIN scholars, as 91 percent of the students receiving funding in the first three years of the program indicated a desire to advance their education to the master’s and doctoral levels.
To learn more about the NCIN program, visit www.NewCareersInNursing.org.