NEPA Health Care Foundation Opens Careers in Care Nursing Scholarships Members News March 18, 2021 The Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation today announces the opening of its new Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship application, established through the Scranton Area Community Foundation. This $700,000 competitive nursing scholarship program aims to support the growth and development of the nursing workforce in NEPA. The Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship Program is now accepting applications from students who plan to pursue or who are pursuing nursing and who will practice in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Interested students with demonstrated financial need can apply through the Scranton Area Community Foundation’s online portal found at safdn.org/nursing. The deadline to apply for a nursing scholarship is Saturday, May 15, 2021. To qualify for a Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship, individuals must show they have had a permanent address in Lackawanna, Luzerne, or Wyoming County for the last three years. Scholarships are available to those interested in obtaining a CNA and entering the healthcare workforce. Scholarships are also for anyone employed in the healthcare field in either Lackawanna, Luzerne, or Wyoming County and looking to advance as an LPN or RN. Additionally, students may apply if they are in their third or fourth year of a four-year nursing degree and looking for financial assistance. ‘Nontraditional’ students or those looking to go back to school to obtain a nursing degree may also apply. A registered nurse looking to obtain a Master’s degree may also qualify for a Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship. Letters of recommendation are required when applying. These scholarship opportunities offered by the Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation through its Careers in Care program, come during a time where the strains on the healthcare workforce in Northeastern Pennsylvania have been significant. These scholarships aim to make an impact on the nursing workforce in Lackawanna, Luzerne, and Wyoming Counties. “These scholarships will provide the much-needed financial support to students who may otherwise not have been able to further their education,” stated Director of Nursing and Associate Professor of Practice at Marywood University, Dr. Theresa Tulaney, Ph.D., MS, RN, GCNS. “In addition, it will allow students to focus on their education instead of having to work many hours to alleviate difficult financial situations,” she added. “The Foundation’s Board understands the strains that the regional healthcare workforce is facing and, through the Careers in Care initiative, strives to make an impact to address these critical issues,” said James Clemente, NEPA Health Care Foundation Board Chair. “Over the past year, we have seen just how timely this really is.” Additionally, through Careers in Care, the NEPA Health Care Foundation will provide grant support totaling $830,000, to a variety of organizations including Lackawanna College, for its three-year plan to enhance the pipeline of local healthcare professionals and increase the number trained and retained in the region; United Neighborhood Centers of NEPA for its Upward Economic Mobility Program; and Saint Joseph’s Center for direct support professional wage increases. The Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation’s Careers in Care initiative is a $1.5 million commitment over a three-year period (2020-2023) focused on moving the needle on these critical areas. The rollout of the Careers in Care initiative comes after the completion of a regional listening tour which the Foundation conducted from May through September of 2019. The NEPA Health Care Foundation conducted 30 site visits across the region to determine the health workforce challenges from the perspective of multiple healthcare providers, colleges, universities, vocational schools, agencies, and other nonprofit organizations, and how the Foundation could best make an impact. “It was clear from discussions during our listening tour that there is a great demand for nurses at all levels. Supply is just not able to meet demand,” said Laura Ducceschi, President and CEO of the Scranton Area Community Foundation. She continued, “It was also clear that the development of the regional health workforce pipeline needs to continue to start earlier with students.” The Scranton Area Community Foundation administers the NEPA Health Care Foundation. In addition to the Careers in Care initiative, the NEPA Health Care Foundation is also in the seventh year of a $3.2 million commitment to the Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine (GCSOM) for scholarship support for incoming first-year medical students from Lackawanna, Luzerne and Wyoming counties. The NEPA Health Care Foundation Scholars program covers full tuition for these scholars, who indicate a commitment to practice medicine in Northeastern PA.