USF gets federal grant to help veterans become nurses
The University of South Florida College of Nursing has received $1.25 million to offer veterans the chance to earn nursing degrees.
The fully-funded four-year federal grant was the largest distributed to nine institutions across the country by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration. It will create a bachelor of science degree, called "Creating Access to Registered Nurse Education for Veterans," or V-CARE, awarding credit for military experience. The idea, USF officials say, is to build on medical skills veterans already have from their service, at the same time addressing the shortage of nurses in Florida and around the country.
The program will start with 12 to 24 students in fall 2014, eventually enrolling 120 veterans, current service members and reservists over four years.
The new grant complements USF's efforts to become a top draw for military students. Military Times magazine has ranked USF the fourth most veteran-friendly four-year college in the nation. GI Jobs magazine ranked USF in the top 15 percent of military friendly schools.
This year, three USF student veterans got prestigious scholarships from the Pat Tillman Foundation (read their bios from a past Gradebook post). The university also enjoyed national attention when student veteran Kiersten Downs rode her bike across country to raise money and support for student veterans (read that story here).