Graduate Nursing Education Grant Makes a Difference in Oklahoma

BETHANY, OK (October 9, 2012) - The School of Nursing at Southern Nazarene University (SNU) has received continuing funding for the fifth year of an Oklahoma Incentive Nursing Graduate Scholars Grant. This $2.5 million, 5-year grant is provided by an anonymous donor through the Communities Foundation of Oklahoma. The grant was established to help combat the shortage of nursing instructors at Oklahoma’s colleges and universities.

For the past four years, this grant has been making a difference in the lives of graduate nursing students at SNU. “This compassionate assistance enabled me to be able to fulfill my calling to Nursing Education by training nursing students at hospitals and clinical facilities, as well as in the classroom,” commented 2010 graduate Diane Gaston. “I have a passionate desire to instill in this generation of student nurses, the importance of the calling to nursing and serving the sick as Jesus did in the context of the highest quality and skilled care.”

These graduates are not only affecting students but the healthcare community at large. Maria Avers, a 2011 graduate, recently presented at a national conference for Nursing Leaders, Informaticists and Home Care and has been invited to speak at a quarterly Faith Community Nursing Association meeting. “Without the time spent at SNU, I would not have done any of the above. Your facility lit a spark that hasn’t gone out yet. I appreciate the opportunity to continue learning.”

Graduate students awarded these grants commit to two years of teaching in an Oklahoma college or university after completing their master's degree in nursing. Present graduates of the grant program are teaching in multiple Oklahoma locations, including Ardmore, Bartlesville, Enid, Langston, and Okmulgee, as well as Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

"SNU is working to help meet this critical need in our state," stated Dr. Mary Jones, SNU Provost. "This grant allows us to increase the capacity for nurse educators, impacting the number of nurses in Oklahoma."

SNU is one of three Oklahoma university participants in this grant program.

SNU offers a nineteen-month graduate program track leading to a Master of Science in both Nursing Education and Nursing Leadership in two locations, Oklahoma City (Bethany) and Tulsa. Founded in 1899, Southern Nazarene University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university located in Bethany, Oklahoma, with an additional campus site located in Tulsa.

The SNU School of Nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

For more information on the SNU School of Nursing, contact Dr. Katie Sigler, APRN, Ed.D. in Tulsa at 918-970-4628 or Dr. Mary Hibbert, Ph.D. in Bethany at 405-491-6612.