The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics projects an increase of 12% through 2028 regarding registered nurses’ job opportunities. There will be more than 500,000 new job opportunities and demand for more nurses to fill these positions.
However, it is also true that there are fewer nurses who can fill up these positions. This growing shortage is threatening the treatment outcome and patient care in most medical facilities. But what is the way forward especially during these challenging times where more and more nurses are needed?
While it is true that nursing itself is a rewarding career, the journey leading to its final award is challenging. This challenge is particularly difficult for those who are struggling financially in one way or the other. Nursing courses in any accredited nursing program will cost you a significant amount of money, and it is only rational for aspiring students to look for financial aid.
Despite the challenges, both public and private entities are coming forward to help solve the situation by offering various nursing scholarships. These awards help students meet their financial needs and complete their studies stress-free. But which scholarships are available for medical students?
The options vary for different providers and students at various degree levels. For instance, some states may offer scholarships for an undergraduate nursing student but not associate degree or graduate students. One standing fact, though, is that there are others suitable for students across every education level. One of the most popular scholarships is The Foundation of the National Student Nurses Association Scholarship. And it is available for every U. S citizen pursuing a nursing degree.
Another popular nursing scholarship is the Nurse Corps Scholarship Program. This one is sponsored by the federal government and awards scholarship-for-service opportunities for nursing students at all levels. When it comes to qualifying for these scholarships, a potential beneficiary must meet some minimum requirements.
Most of the scholarships are merit-based and are available to address different needs. Usually, if not all the time, every nursing scholarship will be only applicable to students who meet the set academic requirement and satisfy all merits for financial need. Other requirements may vary significantly, but anyone who qualifies will get a scholarship worth their needs.
Best Nursing Scholarships
The medical field is one of the most lucrative career paths you can choose to follow. Despite the intense study required, you can succeed if you are passionate and industrious enough. There are many jobs in the field of medicine. Other than doctors, nurses and pharmacists also play an important role within the profession. Being a nurse requires a lot of both time and financial investment. The cost of completing a nursing degree program depends on the mode of schooling you enroll in. Online nursing programs are cheaper and more convenient if you stay far from your institution of choice.
Financing a nursing program to completion can be challenging. In most cases, institutions might terminate your studies if you fail to clear tuition fees within the required period. To make education available to all people, various institutions offer scholarships to students facing financial challenges. Here are some scholarships that you can apply to help complete your studies in a nursing school.
Academic Institution Scholarships
Academic institutions take pride in producing top-class graduates in different fields, a core reason for scholarship programs within such institutions. Many universities and colleges provide financial assistance to bright students to complete their courses. This assistance could be reduced tuition fees or having the fees are paid in full by the institution. The financial assistance you receive usually depends on your financial status and level of study. Top universities offering scholarships for nursing students include Harvard University and the University of Findlay.
Scholarships from Non-governmental institutions
Non-governmental institutions such as the United Nations and World Bank offer a wide range of scholarships for nursing students. Such organizations conduct various medical researches and studies; therefore, they require skilled personnel to achieve their goals. If you are a nursing student at any level of study, even a master’s or doctorate, you can apply for and get scholarships from these organizations. In most cases, the organizations offer fully paid scholarships with stipends for international students. These scholarships are the best to apply for if you intend to study in a different country or state. The best part of such scholarships is that you stand a chance of being employed by the organization right after completing your studies.
Governments need skilled personnel to function efficiently. To facilitate a skilled labor supply, governments offer scholarships to students pursuing courses such as nursing. If you qualify for a government scholarship, you should apply for it. In most cases, government scholarships cater for tuition fees. However, you can apply for grants to offset other bills such as food and rent during your studies. One of the most popular government organizations offering nursing scholarships is the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses. The scholarships offered by this institution are the best for advancing your studies beyond traditional academic nursing education.
Managing Finances as A Nursing Student
Once you get a scholarship to study nursing, financial discipline is key in ensuring you benefit from the scholarship. If the scholarship includes fully paid tuition fees and stipends, you should consider the following to maintain a stable financial status.
Avoid Unnecessary Expenses
Maintaining a lifestyle within your financial capabilities is very important. A moderate lifestyle means you don’t spend a lot of money on things that don’t contribute to your development. For instance, you can decide to live in an apartment whose rent is within your budget. Overspending on rent means you will lack necessities such as food, water, and electricity.
Use the Funds for Their Intended Purpose
Some scholarships are paid through the students’ bank accounts. If you receive scholarship money in your account, ensure it serves the required purpose. Funds meant for tuition fees should be paid as tuition fees. Diverting the funds to other uses might result in consequences such as your scholarship being terminated.
Make Proper Use of Your Spare Time
While at school, you won’t be subjected to classes all the time. During your free time, engage in activities that aid in your development as a nurse. Staying idle leads to temptations of spending too much money than required. You can work part-time in different organizations to generate extra income for your other expenditures such as holidays and traveling.
Although scholarships are available, financial preparation is vital before joining a nursing school. Sometimes scholarship funds might not be adequate to offset all your needs during the period of study. Therefore, you need a backup plan to finance yourself through nursing school.
Requirements for Nursing Scholarships
Nursing is one of the best career paths you can choose. If you are passionate about taking care of people, nursing is the career you need. Many people around the world wish to pursue nursing careers. Due to financial challenges and costs associated with the degree, very few end up achieving this dream. The government and other organizations offer scholarships to financially disadvantaged students. The scholarships target to help as many people attain their educational and career goals as possible. Although one can access these scholarships and other financial assistance, several conditions ensure the funding goes to the right people.
Types of Scholarships Available for Nursing Students
Qualifications for nursing scholarships vary depending on the nature of the scholarship and the amount of funding involved. Here are some popular scholarships you might receive as a nursing student.
- Institutional Scholarships- Institutional scholarships are the most common form of financial assistance for nursing students. These are scholarships where an institution you enroll in takes part to offset some of your expenses. In most cases, the scholarship covers part or the entire tuition and accommodation expenses. These scholarships are usually awarded to students with unique prowess in academics or other co-curricular activities.
- Scholarships from Non-Governmental Institutions- Many independent organizations such as the United Nations offer a wide range of scholarships to nursing students. The scholarships offered usually targets international students from underdeveloped countries. However, students pursuing critical courses such as nursing can get these scholarships irrespective of where they come from. These scholarships target to spread of technical knowledge and skills across the globe. The biggest advantage of these scholarships is that you stand a chance of being employed by the organization once you complete your studies.
- Government Scholarships- Governments require an adequate supply of skilled labor to function in different situations. To achieve this, governments offer scholarships to students pursuing technical courses such as nursing. These scholarships are given through designated government organizations to students, mostly citizens. However, the government awards nursing scholarships to international students to improve diplomatic relations with the countries involved. The National Nurses United, NNU, is one of the government organizations that give scholarships to nursing students.
Qualifications for Nursing Scholarships
Before you get a scholarship, the organization giving it out does an assessment to determine whether you qualify for it or not. Here are some requirements you should fulfill to get a nursing scholarship.
- Be from The Right Country or Region- Scholarships target different people. Before you apply for a nursing scholarship, ensure you are from the right country or origin as indicated in the scholarship details. A majority of institutions target to support minority students through the education system. Therefore, you don’t stand a chance of getting such scholarships unless you come from a minority background. In some cases, the scholarships specifically target native citizens, which means that foreign students cannot access the scholarship even if they apply.
- Attain the Required Level of Study- Scholarships target to support nursing students at different levels of study. Most scholarships from non-governmental institutions target their scholarship award to a post-graduate nursing student. If you are pursuing a Bachelor’s degree, you won’t get financial assistance by applying for scholarships that target students pursuing their Master’s degree.
- Be in The Right Institution- Before you get a scholarship, the institution responsible follows up to make sure you are in the right institution. In most cases, a copy of your admission letter is required when applying. The organization will then follow up with the institution you have enrolled in to confirm the authenticity of the letter. For scholarships given by academic institutions, you might be required to enroll in the same institution that offers the scholarship; an institution cannot finance your studies in a different organization unless there is an agreement between the two institutions.
- Be Financially Disadvantaged- One of the most common documents you might be asked to present while applying for a scholarship is financial statements. These statements are used to determine whether you need financial assistance or not. They are also used to gauge the number of funds you should receive in the form of a scholarship. In some cases, you might be required to have a certain amount of money during admission into the institution since the scholarship funds come in sometime after you have been admitted.
The above mentioned are general requirements for any nursing scholarships. Several other requirements depend on the policies of the institution giving out the scholarship. Once you get the scholarship, you need to manage the finances well to avoid further financial constraints.
How to Apply for A Nursing Scholarship
The nursing profession is considered among the most satisfying careers that one can pursue in a world characterized by economic uncertainties and perils. With the rapid increase of the human population, there are significant concerns about nursing shortages countrywide. Hence, to meet the growing demand for nurses, the government has rolled out training programs, including a bachelor’s degree and other nursing programs, to train new nurses into the nursing profession. Although the career path to the nursing profession is quite clear, the means is likely challenging. Therefore, both the federal and state governments have put in place resources to ensure more students enroll and train for the nursing profession through various nursing scholarship programs. Besides, the scholarships are also available to professionals pursuing RN to BSN programs. They include national scholarships, state scholarships, private organizations scholarships, and scholarships by professional organizations.
Where Can You Find Out About Applying for Nursing Scholarships?
With the country’s advancement in information technology, finding information on nursing scholarships has become relatively easy compared to the previous years. Currently, one doesn’t need to physically visit organizations providing nursing scholarships to find out about applying for nursing scholarships. All this information is always available at the click of a button. Information on scholarship opportunities is still available on federal and state education websites. Besides, they are always available on the respective private organization’s websites, with some organizations advertising some of the nursing scholarship opportunities through the mainstream media. Other online sites that one could get useful information include nursing journals. Additionally, students might find out on applying for nursing scholarships from their respective nursing schools on the government and other private organizations’ available nursing scholarship opportunities.
How Can Letters of Recommendation Help You with A Nursing Scholarship?
Recommendation letters for nursing scholarships from counselors, teachers, and notable individuals in a nursing student’s life have always served as a powerful testament to their achievements. From various surveys, it was evident that students with recommendation letters have a better chance of being a scholarship recipient ahead of students without the letters. How is a recommendation letter beneficial to a nursing student applying for a scholarship?
- Acts as an Endorsement: Recommendation letters from your teachers and counselors will undoubtedly act as your endorsement. Through the letter, the referees will receive praise for your personal qualities, school, and career achievements and express confidence in your future successes, both in school and career development. This praise is an indication that you have people who are highly motivated to vouch for you. In some cases, recommending individuals might indicate the reasons why you need grants and scholarships.
- Acts as Evidence of Your Qualifications: A well-written recommendation letter shows your qualities and acts as evidence that you are highly qualified to receive the nursing scholarships. The recommendation letters clearly outline your goals and commitments.
- Indicates Your Grades: A recommendation letter, especially from your nursing teacher, indicates how you will perform in school. Nursing scholarships are awarded to nursing students who perform highly in class. Hence, a recommendation letter from your teacher would work best for you when applying for the nursing scholarship
What Steps Should You Take to Apply for A Nursing Scholarship?
Applying for a nursing scholarship is not a walk in the park, as most nursing students think. The process involves numerous activities, including conducting online and offline research, filling of forms, and meeting the application deadline. However, with a well-articulated plan, one might complete the process with ease. Here are a few steps that one should follow when applying for a nursing scholarship from different institutions.
- Conduct Thorough Research: The first step in successfully applying for a nursing scholarship is researching the available scholarship opportunities to identify the individuals offering the scholarship, how long it takes, and what it covers. Identify all the lucrative options and determine whether you are one of the eligible applicants for each of them.
- Understand the Application Process: Each scholarship has a unique application process. After identifying the nursing scholarships, you want to apply for, ensure you go through the application process requirements.
- Note the Application Deadlines: One of the aspects of successful scholarship applications is to submit your application before the deadline. Besides, nursing scholarships undoubtedly attract a vast number of applications. Therefore, you need to note the deadline dates and input reminders into your phone to ensure you are not locked out due to late submission.
- Re-Check Your Application: Once you are done filling out the application forms, double-check your application to ensure you have provided accurate information. Additionally, ensure that your application is free from spelling and grammar mistakes and in the required format. Once this is done, submit your application. An early application might work wonders.
Nursing scholarships have become common among nursing students in different nursing schools. The scholarship opportunities range from those provided by the state and federal government to those offered by private organizations. One needs to ensure he has a recommendation letter from their teachers and also ensures that the application is made correctly as per the above guide.
Tips for Writing an Application for A Nursing Scholarship
If you are in nursing school, nursing scholarships are one of the many ways to finance your studies. There are many scholarship programs that you can apply for while in nursing school. Some are offered by the government, while others are from non-governmental and academic institutions. Despite the availability of scholarships, not every person that applies for them gets the funding. Scholarships target different people; for instance, a person of any other gender cannot get funding by applying for scholarships for women. Organizations giving out scholarships have specific requirements that you must fulfill to get funding.
Tips for Applying for Nursing Scholarships
Getting a scholarship is not guaranteed even if you apply. Thousands of people submit applications for nursing scholarships in various organizations every year. These applications are analyzed and a final list of beneficiaries produced. Only those who qualify for the scholarships receive funding. To improve your chances, here are some tips to consider when applying for a nursing scholarship.
- Be Authentic- Authenticity is usually the first qualification that organizations look for before giving out a scholarship. When writing an application, ensure your details are accurate and true according to records held by authorities. Any conflicting information could lead to the nullification of your application. For instance, your name, age, and place of origin need to match whatever is in the government database. To verify that you are indeed a student, some organizations will demand a copy of your admission letter from the institution you have enrolled in. The same applies to information about your level of study.
- Be Precise- Some organizations require you to write an essay when applying for a scholarship. Depending on the topic you are required to write on, you need to be specific and direct to the point. Ensure the information you give in the essay matches the title you are supposed to write about. You might lose out on the scholarship if you give out too much irrelevant information. Important aspects to include in your essay are the reasons you should be given the scholarship and what you intend to do after completing your study. The reasons you state need to match the intended purpose of the scholarship and the organization awarding it.
- Attach All the Required Documents- Writing a nursing scholarship application is almost identical to writing a resume. Just like a resume, you should attach all the required documents when sending in your scholarship application. Some of these documents include copies of your identity card, admission letter to an academic institution, among others. If you are applying for a postgraduate nursing scholarship, you might be required to attach a copy of your undergraduate degree or diploma. The documents you submit are used to identify your application from others. Additionally, they are used to check the authenticity of your personal details to determine whether you qualify for the scholarship or not.
- Prove That You Need Financial Assistance- Scholarships are meant for people who can’t finance their studies fully. To get one, you should provide adequate evidence of financial constraints that might prevent you from completing your studies. In most cases, you will be required to provide financial statements for a given period. You should ensure these statements are within the required range to qualify for the scholarship.
- Submit Your Application on Time- One of the criteria used to eliminate applications is deadlines. Since many people apply for scholarships, most organizations do not look at applications that come in later than the stated deadline. While filling out application forms, you should take note of the deadline for submitting them. Deadlines vary depending on the organization and nature of the scholarship is given out. However, most applications are usually open between one and four months—the long period targets giving people ample time to prepare and submit their applications.
- Ask for Recommendations- Many nursing scholarships are available in different organizations, making it hard to choose the right scholarship. Therefore, you should ask around for recommendations on the best scholarships to apply for to prevent chances of losing out on good scholarships since you can’t get funding from two different organizations at the same time.
Once you get a scholarship, financial discipline is one of the most important factors you need to observe. You risk losing the scholarship if the organization realizes that you spend the funds on expenses other than the intended ones.
It is never an easy task to land a nursing scholarship. Some students don’t know where to get the information on where to apply for the scholarships. So, if you are looking for the right places to apply for a nursing scholarship, the answers are many.
Most schools, colleges, or universities provide or connect students with these opportunities. If not, then should you already know about a given scholarship program, the chances are they have a website. Please take it as your sole role to visit them and learn about their offers.
Otherwise, you should also know that applying for a nursing scholarship calls for a top-notch essay, just like in any other area. But what can you do to ensure your essay sells? There are some basic things that you should consider to ensure your nursing scholarship essay professional.
During the application, you will want to check the requirements, understand them fully, be clear and concise, make logical notes, and explain yourself professionally on your future career as a registered nurse.