Methodist in the Media
Nursing Scholarships Go Unclaimed, While Observers Say Program Is MisdirectedPublished: July 21, 2023
Nursing students have snapped up only $1.1 million of a $5 million scholarship program, and some are wondering if the program needs to be changed to help more students.
A year ago, the Nebraska Legislature allocated $5 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funds for the scholarships in hopes of addressing a chronic shortage of nurses that is expected to grow to 5,400 by 2025.
But the program was aimed at helping students in short-term training, and it has helped only about 400 nursing students. If the $5 million isn’t fully allocated by the end of next year, the remainder must be returned to the feds.
The concerns have advocates for nurses wondering if the state should amend the program so the funds are used as intended.
“The intent was wonderful, it was right on track. But they kind of missed the mark in not including those in traditional nursing programs,” said Deb Carlson, president and CEO of Nebraska Methodist College in Omaha.
Nebraska Examiner: Nursing Scholarships Go Unclaimed, While Observers Say Program Is Misdirected