Second-degree students convey an abundance of experience, knowledge and ability to the nursing labor force via Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) programs developed to supply new graduates to tackle the nursing shortage. The ABSN programs consist of identical course objectives to traditional four-year programs in a shorter time frame, mostly by combining bridge courses and core content. Training is intense as the full-time courses offered have no breaks between sessions.
Each ABSN program offers various scholarship funding. Contact the school directly for scholarship information. Need-based scholarship information is available at the financial aid/student services office. Area hospitals may offer ABSN students tuition scholarships in return for committing to work in basic practice before pursuing a master's degree. Health-care systems, hospitals, non-traditional practice settings, and state and federal legislatures partner with schools to increase grant and scholarship funding for these programs. This will increase the production of entry-level nurses and eliminate the financial burden of students.
Scholarship eligibility for a second-degree nursing program differs from college to college, but nearly all require a minimum 3.0 GPA. Students must possess a professional mindset, determination and dedication. Students must understand their goals and the amount of funds required. They must also prepare their college transcripts, letters of recommendation, socioeconomic information (ethnicity, family financial status, citizenship) and an essay about why they chose nursing as a second degree.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Scholarship
The department’s nursing scholarship program offers eligible students tuition, fees and other expenses, such as books, clinical supplies and a monthly stipend. In turn, students provide two years of service to the department. The monetary value of the scholarships is not available on the website. These scholarships are available through the individual schools. Applications are accepted once per year between March and May.
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN)
The AACN has an inclusive scholarship resource listing, which includes the CampusRN/AACN Scholarship Fund. The partnership grants an AACN scholarship program that confers $20,000 annually in endowment to students pursuing bachelor's and master's degrees at AACN-member schools. Students enrolled in accelerated programs at the bachelor's, master’s and doctoral degree levels are given preference.
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Careers in Nursing Scholarship Program (NCIN)
The introduction of the NCIN scholarship program in 2008 aimed to address the nursing shortage and increase the supply of diverse nurse faculty. Scholarships totaling $10,000 each are available to incoming accelerated program students. In the 2011 academic year, 397 students in accelerated bachelor's programs and 114 students in accelerated master's programs will obtain scholarship funding.
National Black Nurses Association (NBNA)
The organization’s scholarship program offers funding for continuing nursing education. It endeavors to assist nurses in improving their skills to better serve the health-care system and communities. The NBNA annually presents diverse scholarships including the Dr. Lauranne Sams Scholarship, Mayo Foundations Scholarship, Pepsi Co. Scholarship, Gannett Healthcare Group Scholarship, NBNA Board of Directors Scholarship and Kaiser Permanente Scholarship. Candidates must have at least one year remaining of school, be a NBNA member and a member of a local chapter. These scholarships range from $500 to $2,000.
- Nurse image by Maria Bell from Fotolia.com