Graduate Nursing Scholarships

Graduate Nursing Scholarships for Career Advancement
Many nurses are interested in advanced career options and seek graduate nursing scholarships to help pay for additional education.  Nursing students in advanced nursing programs are eligible for a variety of scholarships to help defer graduate level education costs.  The more education a nurse has, the more job opportunities are available.

Following below are examples of nursing scholarships for graduate students.

State Programs for Graduate Nursing Students

In response to the growing demand for qualified nurses, many states have scholarships available for graduate students in nursing.  Typically these scholarships are administered through the nursing schools but each state has specific guidelines that detail how the scholarships are to be used.  Following is an example of a state nursing scholarship program for graduate students.

Maryland Graduate Nurse Support Program

This program offers the Graduate Nursing Faculty Scholarship and Living Expenses Grant.  The intent is increase the number of skilled teaching faculty in Maryland Schools of Nursing for the purpose of aggressively attracting and keeping qualified nurses in hospitals throughout Maryland.  The Program is open to registered nurses who wish to teach nursing at nursing schools in the state.  Nurses must be sponsored by the director of a nursing school to be considered.  Applications are accepted three times throughout the year.  Only Maryland residents already enrolled in an accredited Maryland college or university can apply.  Undergraduate students are not eligible for this opportunity.  This is a merit-based program. Award amounts are no more than $13,000 for an academic year for full-time students and are renewable for one additional year. The scholarship must be used to pay for tuition and fees.  Each scholarship award requires a service commitment from the recipient – one year of service for one year of financial assistance. For additional information, contact the Maryland Higher Education Commission’s Office of Student Financial Aid at (410) 767-3301.

Educational Institute Scholarships for Graduate Nursing Students

Graduate nursing students can often identify potential scholarships through their nursing school.  However, these tend to be very competitive so it is a good idea to have a backup plan.  Students can talk to advisors in the school’s financial aid office or the nursing department about these scholarship opportunities.  Each scholarship will have individual eligibility and submission requirements.  The following is an example of a graduate program that offers scholarships to students.

Hawaii Pacific University

Graduate students enrolled in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences are eligible for Graduate Scholarships.  Scholarships are awarded based on academic scores, community involvement, work experience, essay, and documented financial need.  Annual award amounts range from $2,000 to $6,000.  Applications are due by mid-April and mid-October annually.  A completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) must be included with the application package.  Interested students can contact the University’s Graduate Admissions Office at (808) 543-8034.

Employer-Sponsored Scholarships for Graduate Nursing Students

If you are a working nurse, your employer may offer scholarships to help employees get advanced training.  Students interested in pursuing graduate studies in nursing can ask their supervisor or a human resources department representative if scholarships are available.  Following is an example of an employer that offers nursing scholarships to employees to get advanced degrees.

Suburban Hospital Foundation

The Foundation awards nursing scholarships for graduate students attending nursing schools in or near Bethesda, Maryland.  Donations from the Eugene B. Foundation helped create the Casey Endowment for Nursing. Graduate students who receive scholarships from the endowment become Casey Scholars.  Each scholarship award requires the receiving student to be employed by Suburban Hospital to assist with nursing vacancies. Award amounts are $2,500.  Applications are typically due to the Foundation by April annually.  For additional information, graduate students can contact the Foundation at (301) 896-3971.

Inova Health System

Through the Edelman Nursing Career Center, Inova administers the Nursing Excellence Scholarship Program which has several financial assistance opportunities for graduate nursing students including the Advanced Practice Scholarship and the John and Nina Toups Doctoral Scholarship. Awards range from $5,000 to $15,000 depending upon the scholarship. In addition, students who apply to the Scholarship Program are automatically considered for two graduate scholarships: the Carl and Josie Biggs Nursing Scholarship and the Karlgaard Family Scholarship.  Both offer awards of $5,000. Eligible applicants include Inova employees and nurses as well as college seniors with demonstrated academic achievement in the area of nursing.  Students must commit to working at Inova after graduation. Applications are typically available during the first quarter of each year.  Deadlines for applications will be specified at that time.  For additional information, contact the Edelman Center during regular business hours at 8110 Gatehouse Road, Suite 200, Falls Church, VA 22042.

Community-Based Scholarships for Graduate Nursing Students

Many foundations offer nursing scholarships for graduate students. Residency is usually required for eligibility.  This means that the student must live in the community served by the foundation.  If you work in a different county than you live, you may be eligible for scholarships from both jurisdictions.  The following foundation is an example of a community-based organization that offers nursing scholarships to local graduate students.

Peter V. Westhaysen Medical Education Trust

Graduate nursing students who are residents of Illinois may be eligible for Trust scholarships. Scholarships are awarded based on academic scores, commitment to nursing, work and volunteer experience, and financial need.  Award amounts vary.  Applications are typically due to the Trust by the end of May annually.  Interested students can request an application by writing the Trust, c/o First Midwest Bank, 2801 West Jefferson Street, Joliet, IL 60435.

Nurses can get graduate nursing scholarships to help pay for advanced training.  Scholarships pay for tuition and, depending on the scholarship, other expenses related to your education such as books and fees. This reduces the financial burden on graduate nursing students.