Six School of Nursing Doctoral Students Named Jonas Scholars

Baltimore, Md. – Six University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON) doctoral students are among more than 100 students nationwide to be named Jonas Scholars by the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence.

Two PhD students – Ana Duarte, MS, PMHNP-BC, and Mari Griffioen, MS, RN – and two Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) students – Sonia Brown, MS, RN, ACNP-BC, and Susy Postal, MS, RN-BC – have been selected to receive grants from the Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholar Program. The program, which launched in 2008, aims to address the nursing faculty shortage by increasing the number of doctoral-prepared faculty available to teach in nursing schools nationwide.

Darlene Curley, executive director of the Jonas program, notes that in addition to growing the ranks of nursing faculty, Jonas scholars will also expand the number of advanced practice nurses who can serve as primary care providers and health care leaders – vital roles as the nation’s health care system undergoes sweeping transformations.

Among the first cohort to receive scholarship awards from the Jonas Nursing Scholars Program for Veterans Health are PhD student Benjamin Canha, MSN, RN, and DNP student Kathryn Gift, MSN, RN. The program, which is launching in fall 2012, seeks to improve veterans’ health care.

“The tremendous health challenges facing our veterans require a specially trained workforce and this program is a significant first step in preparing nurses to be on the frontlines of veterans’ care,” says Curley.

Each scholar will receive $10,000 for the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 academic years.

“We are extremely proud of our doctoral students who received these prestigious scholarships,” says Janet D. Allan, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean of UMSON. “Through their research and practice, they will develop new knowledge about critical health issues, improve health systems, and help educate future generations of nurses. Our Veterans Health Scholars will develop new knowledge and care models to help provide better health care for our veterans.”

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The University of Maryland School of Nursing, founded in 1889, is one of the oldest and largest nursing schools, and is ranked eleventh nationally. Enrolling more than 1,600 students in its baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral programs, the School develops leaders who shape the profession of nursing and impact the health care environment.