The Suncoast Nursing Action Coalition (SNAC) recently awarded 17 nursing scholarships to help address a shortage of bachelor-prepared nurses (BSN) and doctoral-prepared nursing faculty in Sarasota, Charlotte, Manatee, and Desoto counties. To celebrate, the Community Foundation of Sarasota County (CFSC) hosted the gathering.
SNAC created its nursing scholarship program in 2016. Since then, SNAC has awarded 4 doctoral and 32 baccalaureate scholarships totaling $140,000 to support local faculty and students.
Decades of research validates the link between BSN-prepared nurses and better patient outcomes and care, but roughly half of all nurses graduating today are becoming licensed Registered Nurses.
“Investing in BSN and postgraduate nursing education is one of the best things a community can do to fill those critical roles,” said Jan Mauck, SNAC leader and recently retired chief nursing officer at Sarasota Memorial Healthcare System. “We are fortunate to have a community willing to support this scholarship program and work with us to ensure a highly prepared nursing workforce.”
Local foundations that support SNAC include the Sarah Greer Mayer Fund of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, the Janice S. Kelly Memorial Foundation, Rita B. Lamere Memorial Foundation, and Burrus Foundation. The CFSC serves as SNAC’s fiscal sponsor, and The Patterson Foundation provides a consultant to support SNAC in achieving better health care outcomes.
The SNAC scholarships are among many local, state, and national initiatives responding to the 2010 Institute of Medicine report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health. The report recommends increasing the percentage of BSN-prepared nurses to 80 percent and doubling the number of nurses with doctorates in the US by 2020.
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