- The University of Miami announced on Tuesday that it is receiving a $3.25 million dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Health to help fund nursing scholarships
- The scholarships intend to be awarded to financially disadvantaged students
- Recipients can have their education subsidized by up to $40,000 dollars per semester
- The scholarships aim to provide a more accessible path of education for those entering the health profession while lessening the effects of a major nursing shortage
The University of Miami (UM) School of Nursing and Health Studies announced this week that it received a $3.25 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Health to help fund scholarships for nursing students.
According to the university, the five-year grant will provide underrepresented students scholarships and other means of financial assistance to those seeking a job in the health profession as a family nurse practitioner or adult-gerontology primary care nurse.
Students who demonstrate financial need or are members of an underrepresented racial or ethnic minority group are eligible to become scholarship recipients. To further assist in navigating the medical education years, recipients will also be provided a faculty member to serve as a mentor figure.
“This is an awesome opportunity for students,” said Johis Ortega, associate dean for Hemispheric and Global Initiatives at UM. “We try to pair them with someone they identify with so that they can feel comfortable talking about any issues they can encounter pursuing the program.”
The grant will fund scholarships up to $40,000 per semester for full-time master’s degree students that are enrolled in the family nurse practitioner or adult-gerontology primary care nurse practitioner fields at UM.
UM is the latest Florida university to receive funding for students studying the healthcare profession. Florida International University, Florida State University, and the University of South Florida have all taken measures this year to provide a more accessible degree path for those specifically looking to enter the nursing workforce.
“There has long been a need for nurses in Florida, especially as our state is growing, and we want to continue to support these front-line heroes,” said Gov. Ron DeSantis.
The Florida Hospital Association (FHA) recently conducted a survey of its member institutions, finding an alarming Registered Nurse turnover rate of 25 percent, also noting turnover in over a third of its total critical care unit workforce.
FHA projects a deficit of 59,100 nurses in Florida by 2035. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth for nurses in Florida is expected to grow by 21 percent, while 40 percent of nurses will approach retirement age in the next decade.
The report also noted that stressful working conditions caused by the pandemic were leading swaths of healthcare workers to resign from positions, citing burnout and fatigue.
South Florida has been affected by the shortage more than other regions of the state. Due to a booming out-of-state population growth, especially among those in the 65+ demographic, adequate and plentiful healthcare resources have become difficult to come by.
Hospital and clinic constriction has been consistent throughout the area, but the trouble has predicated on finding educated and qualified professionals to occupy the space.