School of Nursing Awarded Doctoral Student Support by the Jonas Center

The University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing is pleased to announce that a 2014 grant from the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare will fund scholarships for 3 students in the doctoral programs. The grant for $30,000, which will be matched in part with school funds, will be used to support one PhD Jonas Nurse Leader Scholar, one PhD Jonas Veterans Healthcare Scholar, and one DNP Jonas Veterans Healthcare Scholar over a two-year period. The Jonas Scholar Grants are part of a national effort to stem the nursing faculty shortage and prepare future nurses as America’s healthcare system continues to evolve. These scholarships support nurses pursuing PhDs and DNPs, the terminal degrees in the field. Pitt Nursing is proud to be among the 110 schools supported by Jonas Center programs.

“Pitt’s School of Nursing is gratified to receive this award from the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare as it offers our doctoral students financial support as well as opportunities for networking and collaboration on a national level,” explains Jacqueline Dunbar-Jacob, Dean and Distinguished Service Professor of Nursing. “With this grant award, the Jonas Center is increasing our capability to recruit and retain outstanding doctoral students. Upon graduating, these Jonas scholars will have a tremendous impact on the education of future nursing students and on the advancement of nursing research.”

The Jonas Center, a leading philanthropic funder for nursing, is addressing a critical need as evidenced by troubling data from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing showing that 2013 saw the lowest enrollment increase in professional RN programs in the past five years. This is due primarily to a shortage in qualified faculty, which forces schools to turn away thousands of qualified applicants each year.

“The call for more nurses – and thus the faculty to prepare them – is massive. Healthcare in America has never been more complex, yet tens of thousands of would-be nurses are turned away from the profession each year,” said Donald Jonas, co-founder of the Jonas Center. “We’ve stepped up the pace and expanded our programs to meet this need.”

Pitt’s School of Nursing also received Jonas Center funding for doctoral student scholarships in 2012; the Scholar program was created in 2008. To date, there are nearly 600 doctoral Jonas Scholars nationwide; the Jonas Center has a goal to support 1,000 Scholars by 2020.

The School of Nursing at Pitt has offered doctoral programs of study since 1954, one of the first schools of nursing to do so. Founded in 1939, the School is celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2014, marking a long tradition of leadership in nursing education, research and practice.