Scholarship Applications Now Available for the 2008-2009 Academic Year
WASHINGTON, Sept. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is pleased to announce that eight outstanding graduate students have been selected to receive The California Endowment-AACN Minority Nurse Faculty Scholarship. Introduced last year, this program was developed to provide financial support, mentoring, and leadership development activities to nursing students from underrepresented minority populations who are committed to teaching in a California school of nursing after graduation.
"We are excited about supporting these future leaders in nursing education here in California as we work together towards increasing diversity in nursing," said Robert Ross, MD, President and CEO of The California Endowment.
The California Endowment-AACN Minority Nurse Faculty Scholarship provides support to nursing students enrolled in graduate programs who aspire to be nurse educators. The latest round of scholarship awards were presented to:
"AACN congratulates the scholarship winners and looks forward to working with them as they develop into exceptional teachers and leaders of the nursing profession," said AACN President Jeanette Lancaster, PhD, RN, FAAN. "These awardees, who are all pursuing doctoral degrees, represent the future of nursing education and will serve as role models for the next generation of nurses educated in California institutions." This cohort of scholarship recipients is a very impressive group with all students pursuing the PhD in nursing. In terms of racial background, four scholarship winners are Asian, two are African American, one is Hispanic, and one is Pacific Islander and Hispanic.
For a brief profile of each scholarship winner, visit AACN's Web page at http://www.aacn.nche.edu/Media/CAEwinners9-07.htm.
Why Diversify the Nurse Faculty Population?
The need to enhance diversity within the nursing student population is paralleled by the need to recruit more faculty from minority populations. Though nearly a quarter of all baccalaureate and graduate nursing students in the U.S. are members of underrepresented racial or ethnic minority groups, only 10.5% of faculty teaching in these programs are from minority backgrounds based on the latest AACN data. In California, the state with the most acute shortage of registered nurses in the nation, schools boast the most diverse nursing student body in the country with 51.5% of entry-level baccalaureate students coming from underrepresented groups. Still, only 15.4% of the nursing faculty in California are members of a minority population. All nursing organizations, the federal Division of Nursing, the Institute of Medicine, nursing philanthropies, and other stakeholders agree that recruiting under-represented groups into the health professions is a national priority.
"Diversifying the faculty is key to ensuring a more balanced representation from groups largely missing in academic nursing," added Dr. Lancaster. "Nursing is in dire need of more leaders and educators from minority backgrounds to support students seeking mentors to encourage and enrich their learning." Nursing's leadership also recognizes the strong connection between a diverse nursing workforce and the ability to provide culturally competent patient care.
Scholarship Applications Available for 2008-2009 Academic Year
The California Endowment-AACN Minority Nurse Faculty Scholarship program provides $18,000 in financial support to students pursuing a graduate degree in nursing as well as student mentoring and leadership development components to facilitate academic success. To cover the cost and expenses related to attending the leadership conference, $1,500 in award monies will