University of Maryland School of Nursing students Alisha Hackney, BSN, RN, and Stacey Iobst, BSN, RNC-OB, C-EFM, are among 46 nurses nationwide to receive the prestigious Future of Nursing Scholars program award to support their PhD study. Their scholarships are being funded by Johnson & Johnson and were awarded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, according to a news release.
The RWJF Future of Nursing Scholars program aims to increase the number of nurses holding PhDs in Maryland and around the country. According to the release, fewer than 1% of the nation’s more than 3 million nurses have PhDs in nursing or a related field.
Hackney intends to focus her research on the pathophysiology of labor and delivery, an interest she developed during her senior year in the UMSON’s BSN program. Before beginning the PhD program, Hackney was a clinical nurse in the University of Maryland Medical Center’s adult emergency department.
Iobst plans to focus her research on improving maternity care through strategies such as quality measurement, patient education and provider education, according to the release. She was a nurse on the labor and delivery unit at Holy Cross Hospital in Silver Spring, Md., prior to beginning the PhD program.
The Future of Nursing Scholars program provides grants to schools of nursing so they can provide scholarships to PhD candidates who will commit to completing the program in three years. Hackney and Iobst each will receive an award of $75,000, as well as mentoring and leadership development over the course of the PhD program.
“We are excited that two of our students will be a part of this prestigious program,” UMSON Dean Jane M. Kirschling, PhD, RN, FAAN, said in the release. “The funding support from Johnson & Johnson for the RWJF Future of Nursing Scholar program offers much-needed assistance for our goal of educating the next generation of nursing leaders.”
In addition to RWJF and Johnson & Johnson, the Independence Blue Cross Foundation, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, North Shore Long Island Jewish Health System and the Rhode Island Foundation are supporting the Future of Nursing Scholars grants to schools of nursing this year. The program was launched in 2014 with an inaugural cohort of 16 scholars. The new cohort brings the number of nurses it is supporting to 62.