Kaiser Permanente has presented nearly 200 nursing students in California with more than $300,000 through the Deloras Jones, RN Scholarship Program. The community benefit funding will help secure the future of the nursing profession and the health of California residents.
Kaiser Permanente Southern California gave $179,500 to 100 students from 26 different schools of nursing while 88 students at 20 Northern California schools of nursing received a total of $140,000. Since 2001, Kaiser Permanente's Deloras Jones RN Scholarship program has awarded more than $4 million to 2,130 students statewide. The scholarships range from $1,000 to $2,500 and are primarily based on need to help nursing students enrolled in pre-licensure programs (minimum 3.8 GPA required), graduate and doctoral programs (3.0 GPA required) or underrepresented groups in nursing for men and minority students.
The scholarship is named for and honors Deloras Jones, MS, RN, executive director and founder of the California Institute for Nursing & Health Care. Jones retired in 2000 as Kaiser Permanente's director of divisional nursing services for California after a 34-year career dedicated to professional nursing and leadership.
"The recently released recommendations from the IOM (Institute of Medicine) Initiative on the Future of Nursing provides the opportunity for the nursing profession to redefine its contribution to the health care delivery system and position nurses to play a very important role in health care reform," Jones said. "Kaiser Permanente's commitment to the nursing profession, and in particular nursing education, makes the organization a key partner in the community to fully actualizing the contribution that nurses are able to make to the health of all our communities."
As one of the largest employers of nurses in California, Kaiser Permanente's annual support to replenish the ranks of nurses in the state will again exceed $5 million in 2011 for Nursing Pathways, career ladder programs, nursing research, nursing scholarships, forgivable loans to students and grants to colleges for faculty development.