West Virginia Nursing Scholarship application opens April 15 for 2021-22 academic year
CHARLESTON, WV – The West Virginia Nursing Scholarship Program, which provides awards to Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN), Registered Nursing (RN), graduate and LPN teaching certificate students in exchange for service in West Virginia, begins accepting applications on April 15 for the 2021-22 academic year. The program is administered by the West Virginia Center for Nursing in conjunction with the Higher Education Policy Commission.
“Building up our state’s nursing workforce is one of the best ways we can support our nurses working every day, right now, on the front lines to care for those in our communities. And it’s one of the best ways we can improve public health across the Mountain State,” said Dr. Sarah Armstrong Tucker, West Virginia’s Chancellor for Higher Education. “This scholarship is a direct path to one of the most critical and rewarding careers in West Virginia.”
“The West Virginia Nursing Scholarship Program is one of the best retention tools West Virginia currently has to ensure that nurses completing their education in our state continue to work in the state following graduation,” said Gerald Bragg, Chair of the West Virginia Center for Nursing. “An analysis of the program since 2016 found that 88.7 percent of completers still maintain an active nursing license in West Virginia.”
To qualify for a scholarship, a nursing student must be a West Virginia resident, enrolled in an accredited West Virginia nursing program, and meet specific GPA requirements. Prior to being awarded, RN and LPN students also must be at least halfway through their nursing degree program. Students who anticipate meeting this nursing midpoint date during the academic year are encouraged to apply.
All recipients must agree to fulfill an in-state service obligation, which varies based on the type of nursing:
- LPN students are required to work full-time in West Virginia one year for every year they receive an award;
- RN students are required to work full-time in West Virginia two years for every year they receive an award;
- Graduate nursing students are required to work full-time as a nursing educator at a West Virginia school of nursing two years for every year they receive an award; and,
- LPN teaching certificate students are required to work full-time as an LPN instructor one year for every year they receive an award.
The service obligation full-time requirement can be met through more than one form of employment and all service obligations must be verified by the West Virginia Center for Nursing.
New this year, applicants have the option of answering additional questions on their Nursing Scholarship application to evaluate if they may also qualify for WorkForce West Virginia training dollars. This is a result of a new partnership with WorkForce West Virginia that will lead to more training support being available to nursing students across the state.
Applicants are asked to review eligibility requirements for their specific nursing programs. The application will remain open until June 1, 2021 at http://wvcenterfornursing.org/wvcfn-scholarship/.
The West Virginia Center for Nursing, which is housed within the state’s Higher Education Policy Commission, leads strategies to support the education, recruitment, and retention of nurses in West Virginia.