For Immediate Release

RWJF and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Award New Scholarships through the New Careers in Nursing Program

52 Schools Receive Scholarships to Support Accelerated Degree Nursing Students

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 12, 2011 – The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) today announced that 52 schools of nursing across the U.S. have received funding through the RWJF New Careers in Nursing Scholarship Program (NCIN). NCIN was launched in 2008 to address the national nursing shortage, develop a demographically representative nursing workforce, and fuel the pipeline of nurse faculty and leaders.

“Through the NCIN program, we are challenging nursing schools across the country to expand nurse leadership and strengthen education, two clear goals of the landmark 2010 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report on The Future of Nursing,“ said Denise A. Davis, DrPH, RWJF program officer for NCIN. “By diversifying the nursing profession through these scholarships, we are also helping to create a healthcare workforce ready to meet the needs of the 21st century American patient.”

“AACN applauds the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for their continued commitment to providing much needed scholarship support, mentoring, and leadership development to students enrolled in accelerated nursing programs,” said AACN President Kathleen Potempa, PhD, RN, FAAN. “By focusing on students entering the profession at the baccalaureate and master’s levels, the NCIN program is effectively working to raise the education level of the new nurses, which is in the best interest of the patients we serve.”

The NCIN program was created through RWJF and AACN to enable schools of nursing to expand student capacity in accelerated baccalaureate and master’s programs while building a more diverse workforce ready to serve the needs of a changing patient population. Schools receiving funding through NCIN provide scholarships directly to students from groups underrepresented in nursing or from disadvantaged backgrounds. These grants signify a program investment of more than $23 million in nursing development and scholarship.

In this fourth year of awards, NCIN will provide scholarships in the amount of $10,000 each to 400 students entering accelerated nursing programs during the 2011-2012 academic year. To date, the NCIN program has distributed 2,317 scholarships at 109 schools of nursing.

This year, 320 students in accelerated baccalaureate programs and 80 students in accelerated master’s programs will receive scholarship funding. Many programs that receive awards have used the NCIN funding to help leverage resources to add new faculty, secure matching funding from state programs, develop mentoring and leadership development programs, strengthen outreach activities, and establish new partnerships with community and practice leaders. These efforts will enable schools to sustain their program expansion while positioning them for future growth.

The following nursing schools receiving NCIN grants this year:

  • Allen College
  • Azusa Pacific University
  • Bellarmine University
  • Boston College
  • College of Mount St. Joseph
  • College of St. Scholastica
  • Creighton University
  • DePaul University
  • Duke University
  • Edgewood College
  • Farleigh Dickinson University
  • Georgia Health Sciences University
  • Hampton University
  • Indiana Wesleyan University
  • Kent State University
  • Linfield College
  • Loyola University Chicago
  • Marquette University
  • Medical University of South Carolina
  • MidAmerica Nazarene University
  • Mount Carmel College of Nursing
  • Mount St. Mary's College
  • Nebraska Methodist College
  • New Mexico State University
  • New York University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Rush University
  • Saint Louis University
  • Salisbury University
  • Samuel Merritt University
  • Southern Connecticut State University
  • SUNY Downstate Medical Center
  • Stony Brook University
  • Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
  • Thomas Jefferson University
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • University of Delaware
  • University of Detroit Mercy
  • University of Hawaii, Manoa
  • University of Miami
  • University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • University of Missouri
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Rochester
  • University of South Alabama
  • University of South Florida
  • University of Tennessee Health Science Center
  • University of Texas at El Paso
  • University of Wyoming
  • West Virginia University
  • Winston-Salem State University

Accelerated programs like the ones supported by NCIN provide scholars with the most efficient route to licensure as a registered nurse (RN) and create opportunities for adults who have already completed a baccalaureate or graduate degree in a field other than nursing. These intense programs prepare students to pass the licensure examination required for all RNs in as little as 12 to 18 months and enter the nursing workforce more quickly than graduates of traditional programs.

By bringing more nurses into the profession at the baccalaureate and master’s degree levels, the NCIN program also helps to address the nation’s nurse faculty shortage. Data from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration show that nurses entering the profession via baccalaureate programs are almost four times more likely than other nurses to pursue a graduate degree in nursing, a prerequisite for teaching. This trend is reflected in the NCIN scholars, as 91 percent of the students receiving funding in the first three years of the program indicate a desire to advance their education to the master’s and doctoral levels.

For more information about the NCIN program, visit

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The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation's largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to improving the health and health care of all Americans, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, meaningful, and timely change. For more than 35 years the Foundation has brought experience, commitment, and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those it serves. Helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need, the Foundation expects to make a difference in our lifetime.

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is the national voice for university and four-year college education programs in nursing. Representing more than 670 member schools of nursing at public and private institutions nationwide, AACN's educational, research, governmental advocacy, data collection, publications, and other programs work to establish quality standards for bachelor's- and graduate-degree nursing education, assist deans and directors to implement those standards, influence the nursing profession to improve health care, and promote public support of baccalaureate and graduate nursing education, research, and practice.


Robert Rosseter, AACN, 202-463-6930, ext. 231,

Shannon Toher, RWJF, 202-745-5063,