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School of Nursing Donor Appreciation Luncheon 2011

By Danette Baker

February 23, 2011

On paper, Adelyn Mitchell’s finances looked solid. And they were before she quit her job as a respiratory therapist to attend nursing school. But governmental financial aid forms reflect only the past, not the future—which for Mitchell, included food her children and paying for utilities.

But thanks to the generosity of donors, Mitchell, a student in the Second Degree BSN program, will graduate this summer.  She said a scholarship, which came at just the right time, helped her purchase textbooks so she could continue her studies.

SON Luncheon 2011Mitchell and others from TTUHSC and the School of Nursing expressed their gratitude to donors during the annual Donor Appreciation Luncheon held recently at the TTU International Cultural Center Hall of Nations in Lubbock.

“Because of your generosity, people like me can fulfill their dreams and be innovators for the future,” she said.

Donors provide the school with a wealth of opportunities in education and research, said Interim Dean Yondell Masten, RNC, Ph.D. “We are truly fortunate to have extremely supportive partners in our mission.”

In the past 30 years, the school has grown from having only an undergraduate program with 83 students on one campus to one with multiple undergraduate and graduate programs with 1,431 students on four campuses and nationwide via distance education.

Financial support affords students, like Mike McMurry, R.N., M.S.N., ACNP, BC, (SON ’06) the opportunity to pursue higher education. The 30-year nursing veteran is a student in the Doctorate of Nursing Practice program. He said the advance degree will open doors for him in nursing not available before. “I am interested in politics of nursing … health care reform and the shortage of health care providers will always be an issue.”

McMurry and Mitchell are among the 159 students awarded scholarships this year totaling $122,827.

These gifts enable the School of Nursing to address the nursing shortage by giving students opportunities to pursue their education, said TTUHSC President Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D.

Donor support also provides opportunities for faculty to continue their pursuit of knowledge, positively impacting student learning, he said. Additionally, research funding allows faculty to make an impact in health concerns such as adolescent obesity, diabetes education, long-term care, patient safety and women’s health.

“Texas faces a critical shortage of registered nurses in the next 10 years,” he said. “With continued support we can make a significant impact not only in reducing that deficit, but also in the quality of health care delivery.”