Students today are graduating with more student debt than ever before, and nursing students are no exception. Almost three in four nursing students will graduate with loans, according to a 2014 analysis by Nursing Economics.
Although the cost of college and grad school don’t appear to be going down anytime soon, you can lower the price tag with scholarship money. Organizations around the country offer scholarships for nursing students.
The seven nursing scholarships below are available at the undergraduate or graduate level. With these grants or others like them, you could seriously cut down the cost of your degree.
1. ENA Foundation scholarships
The Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) Foundation awards dozens of nursing school scholarships every year to undergrad and grad students. Plus, it offers an additional 43 scholarships for nurses who want to attend the annual ENA conference. Eligibility requirements vary by award, and amounts range from $2,000 to $10,000.
Here are just a few examples of scholarships you can win through the ENA Foundation:
- Charles Kunz Memorial Scholarship: $3,000 award to a registered nurse pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing.
- Anita Dorr Graduate Scholarship: $5,000 to an emergency nurse studying for a master’s degree in nursing with a focus in administration.
- Pamela Stinson Kidd Memorial Doctoral Scholarship: $10,000 to an emergency nurse pursuing a doctoral degree.
The ENA Foundation supports emergency nurses whose educational level ranges from associate to doctoral. Working as an emergency nurse is stressful; one of these scholarships for nursing students can at least ease the stress of student loans.
2. A Nurse I Am Scholarship
Cherokee Medical Uniforms has awarded 95 scholarships totaling $190,000 since 2007. With its A Nurse I Am Scholarship, the company grants $2,000 to a nursing student every year.
The application for the 2017 scholarship asked nursing students to watch the educational film “A Nurse I Am” before writing a 150-word essay in response to the prompt, “Why do you want to be a nurse?”
The 2017 winner, Linda Hansoul Yoo, wrote about how her own health issues taught her compassion for her future patients. “As a nursing student with ulcerative colitis, I understand the true meaning of compassion,” Yoo wrote. “Now two years into remission, I am ready to give back to those who need my support.”
Like Yoo, you could win $2,000 to put toward your education.
3. FNSNA scholarships
The Foundation of the National Student Nurses Association (FNSNA) has awarded nursing scholarships every year since 1969. Scholarships range from $1,000 to $7,500, and they’re available for both undergrad and grad students.
The scholarship committee looks at your academic achievements, involvement in your community health activities, and financial need. For one 2017 FNSNA scholarship recipient, the award was a crucial part of her education.
“Small acts of generosity such as yours will be the pieces that make up the story of how I became a nurse,” she told the foundation.
4. NURSE Corps Scholarship Program
The NURSE Corps Scholarship Program is a federal program that provides financial support in exchange for qualifying service.
If you are chosen as a recipient and pledge to work full time for two years in an underserved area after graduation, the program will fully cover one or more years of tuition and eligible fees.
A three-year contract could result in a three-year scholarship, and a four-year contract could mean financial support for four years of school.
Beyond covering tuition, the Nurse Corps Scholarship Program also gives a monthly stipend for living expenses. For the 2017-2018 year, the stipend was $1,344 per month.
This program gives over 200 awards every year, but spots are competitive. In 2016, for instance, the program received 2,472 eligible applications for its 230 awards.
Applicants with the greatest financial need are given preference for awards. The program committee also considers other selection factors, such as your academic performance, resume, application essays, and letters of recommendation.
5. Nurses Educational Funds
Nurses Educational Funds (NEF) has provided nursing school scholarships over the past century to help students pay for their education. The organization awards a number of grants ranging in amounts, but all of them go to master’s and doctoral students.
To apply, you must write a 750- to 850-word personal statement about the contribution you’d like to make to the nursing profession.
Six master’s candidates and 17 doctoral students won scholarships from NEF last year. One winner plans to work with underserved communities after graduation. Another aspires to promote tropical disease treatments and prevention efforts in sub-Saharan Africa.
While their post-graduation plans are different, all NEF scholarship recipients have clear professional goals in the field of nursing.
6. Tylenol Future Care Scholarship
With the Future Care Scholarship, Tylenol helps 40 health care students each year pay for their education. The company has awarded over $9 million in scholarship money to students, judging applicants based on their academic achievement, community involvement, and a commitment to caring for others.
It doesn’t matter if you’re an undergrad or grad student, as long you’re going into a career where you plan to actively help others. Tylenol awards $5,000 scholarships to 30 students, along with $10,000 scholarships to 10 students every year. You can use the money for tuition, fees, books, or any other materials you need for school.
7. Nurses Make a Difference Scholarship
Cascade Healthcare Solutions gives a $1,000 scholarship every year to a current or aspiring nursing student at the undergraduate level. You’ll need to maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, as well as provide a thoughtful response to an essay question.
The prompt for the 2017 award was, “What are some of the challenges nurses face today and how do you/will you take on those challenges?”
The 2016 winner, Grace Buzas, plans to work in an intensive care unit following graduation. The 2015 winner, Allison Smith, intends to pursue her Master of Science in nursing and become a nurse practitioner.
Whatever your goal as a nurse, Cascade Healthcare Solutions “is excited to support individuals who have the goal to pursue one of the most essential professions in our society.”
Nursing scholarships ease the cost of school
Taking out student loans is easy; paying them back, not so much. To reduce your debt, apply far and wide to nursing scholarships. Beyond these seven scholarships, you can find additional opportunities using scholarship search tools.
Once you get your nursing degree, you could even be eligible for student loan forgiveness. Most programs forgive loans in exchange for service. Not only can you care for a community in need, but you can also get rid of your student loans in the process.
Need a student loan?Here are our top student loan lenders of 2019!
|* The Sallie Mae partner referenced is not the creditor for these loans and is compensated by Sallie Mae for the referral of Smart Option Student Loan customers.
** Discover's lowest rates shown are for the undergraduate loan and include an interest-only repayment discount and a 0.25% interest rate reduction while enrolled in automatic payments.
1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
Explanation of Rates “With Autopay” (APD)
In school deferred payment is not available in AL, AZ, CA, FL, MA, MD, MI, ND, NY, PA, and WA).
2 = Sallie Mae Disclaimer: Click here for important information. Terms, conditions and limitations apply.
3 Important Disclosures for College Ave.
College Ave Student Loans products are made available through either Firstrust Bank, member FDIC or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.
(1)All rates shown include the auto-pay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.
(2)This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a freshman borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 8.35% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $179.18 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $21,501.54. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.
(3)As certified by your school and less any other financial aid you might receive. Minimum $1,000.
Information advertised valid as of 7/1/2019. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation.
4 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
A government loan is made according to rules set by the U.S. Department of Education. Government loans have fixed interest rates, meaning that the interest rate on a government loan will never go up or down.
Government loans also permit borrowers in financial trouble to use certain options, such as income-based repayment, which may help some borrowers. Depending on the type of loan that you have, the government may discharge your loan if you die or become permanently disabled.
Depending on what type of government loan that you have, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness in exchange for performing certain types of public service. If you are an active-duty service member and you obtained your government loan before you were called to active duty, you are entitled to interest rate and repayment benefits for your loan.
A private student loan is not a government loan and is not regulated by the Department of Education. A private student loan is instead regulated like other consumer loans under both state and federal law and by the terms of the promissory note with your lender.
If your private student loan has a fixed interest rate, then that rate will never go up or down. If your private student loan has a variable interest rate, then that rate will vary depending on an index rate disclosed in your application. If the interest rate on the new private student loan is less than the interest rate on your government loans, your payments will be less if you refinance.
If you don’t pay a private student loan as agreed, the lender can refer your loan to a collection agency or sue you for the unpaid amount.
Remember also that like government loans, most private loans cannot be discharged if you file bankruptcy unless you can demonstrate that repayment of the loan would cause you an undue hardship. In most bankruptcy courts, proving undue hardship is very difficult for most borrowers.
5 Important Disclosures for Discover.
|3.99% – 11.44%1||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|3.98% – 11.35%*,2||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|3.96% – 11.98%3||Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents|
|3.66% – 9.64%4||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|3.87% – 11.87%**,5||Undergraduate and Graduate|