Professional organizations, clubs and unions often have opportunities for those pursuing their fields to apply for scholarship money. Check with nursing unions and healthcare providers’ associations for specific information. Be sure to investigate at local, state, and national levels for opportunities.
Awards may be of a single year’s duration or they may be renewable. This, along with amounts, varies from one specific scholarship to the next. Qualifications and preference vary according to the sponsoring organization’s priorities. Some value student need and grades, while others depend on a proven record of leadership. Many require essays to allow students to convey their interest and passion for the nursing profession. While some applications may be submitted electronically, others must be submitted by mail. It’s imperative that students follow directions carefully and fill out forms neatly.
The state of Delaware sponsors a nursing incentive program of recruitment based on student merit. Students are provided with funding that will be forgiven after a fulfilled commitment to work at a state clinic or hospital. The work commitment is equal to the number of years of funding received, and awards vary. If the work commitment isn’t completed, the award is treated as a loan to be repaid.
The American Legion Auxiliary of Arizona provides both a nursing-specific scholarship and a health care professions scholarship to Arizona residents. Awards vary in amount, with $400 being the minimum health care professions amount and $500 being the set amount of nursing-specific awards.
The state offers $3,000 yearly awards to students enrolled in approved programs at both graduate and undergraduate levels. The awards must be repaid if a student doesn’t complete the study program and follow it up with required nursing employment in the state.
However, James Parsons, Director of recruitment specialists Arrows Group, says that, with specialist nurses already in critically short supply, narrowing the criteria for those wishing to enter the profession will lead to a drop in the number of people becoming nurses, making this problem even more acute.
The Royal College of Nursing welcomed this as "an important and historic development", which the Department of Health said would make nurses "better equipped to improve the quality of patient care".
"I truly feel that nurses having to study at degree level would be good for the profession; however, I do not feel it will help to raise standards. My own training was hospital based (1981- 1984), and I still uphold and work to the standards instilled in me then. I feel that the decline in standards started when they took nursing away from the hospitals/wards, and schools of nursing became obsolete. Why not bring nurse training back to the hospitals - but bring the universities too?"
"It is interesting that some nurses here express concern regarding the current clinical skills of nursing students, particularly when programmes of study involve 50% clinical practice that is assessed by mentors in practice. Perhaps it is not the level of academic study (degree or diploma) that is the problem but the lack of effective mentorship and assessment of student nurses in practice!"
"Whether you are at studying at degree or diploma level, you need to 'want to become a nurse' in the first instance to have the chance of becoming a good nurse. Your attitude has to be right for you to become a good nurse. Studying at diploma level does not make one a better nurse and studying at degree level does not make you a less effective nurse. If anything, it may make more aware of your responsibilities and the values the profession should demonstrate at all times. Maybe this research is needed now, but I bet you, for every 10 nurses that were rude to a patient, seven are more likely to be trained at diploma level or below. I have worked with brilliant nurses who are either trained at diploma or degree level. Common sense is what every practitioner requires first and foremost. I know lots of people who opted for the diploma level for two reasons: bursary is non-means tested, and secondly, they are worried/afraid of doing the dissertation. With the introduction of new ways of working, some of the less clinical roles presently undertaken by nurses could be done by healthcare assistants. If you need to be an all rounder in the profession (clinical, therapeutic, management), having a degree will better prepare you for the intellectual challenges involved"
"I totally agree and really can't see how holding a degree makes a better nurse. When I trained 3 years ago as a diploma student the vast majority of the study time was actually spent with the degree students - we had the same lectures and even the same essays just a slightly different marking criteria, I really cannot see how the ability to write a good essay makes a better nurse. In my experience most diploma students have worked as HCSWs previously and therefore tend to have more hands on practical skills - surely its practical skills rather that essay writing skills which lead to good patient care"
Over the years, Dr. Badger has been selected by graduate and undergraduate nursing students to receive the Graduate Faculty Mentoring Award, the Outstanding Honors Faculty Award, the College of Nursing Excellence in Teaching Award and the Extraordinary Faculty Award.
"In a world where paper certification counts, a degree is a must. What's most important is what do we do after we have that degree. The nursing practice is not getting any better than what it was years ago. What's lacking is that instinct to help others who are strangers to you. We keep saying about others who are not performing well, not a team player, not a good manager and on and on. But have we asked ourselves what we had done; we show others that we are simply doing what others have doing, ie, they have not been doing well.
What's lacking in the nursing curriculum is the emphasis on culture building of what nursing truly represents rather than leaving it to nursing students and nurses to think and analyse what nursing is to them. Finally, we are saying unanimously what nursing is globally in one voice"