Nursing students raise $10,000 for scholarship
Augusta State University nursing students raised more than $10,000 to endow a scholarship for future nursing students. The Nursing Class of 2008 presented the check on May 9 during the department’s annual Pinning Ceremony.
“To our amazement and the faculty’s complete surprise, the students raised $10,907. I believe the goal was $10,000! The students started their quest in January 2008 and met the goal in time for their May 9 Pinning Ceremony. It really is incredible that they were able to do this,” says Charlotte Price, chair of the Department of Nursing. “This was the first time in the history of Augusta State that the student body has raised this much money for a scholarship,” says Dr. Price. Adam Carnahan, one of three nursing students who was instrumental in the fundraising project, wanted the graduating nursing class to do more than just present the traditional gifts given in the past.
“Traditionally, the graduating class has bought gifts for nursing faculty and staff. I came up with the idea that we could do more, and that’s kind of where it developed. Last spring I first brought the idea up, and the class was a little leery that it could be done. I spoke with Helen Hendee and asked what it would take to make it [the scholarship] happen,” he says.
Ms. Hendee, vice president for development and alumni relations, presented the class the information about fundraising and what the class would need to raise in order to make the scholarship perpetual.
“It was kind of scary, but we were bound and determined to make it happen. We were told that in order for the scholarship to be perpetual, we had to raise $10,000. It would make such a big impact. We didn’t want to raise only half and then have the faculty and staff have to finish it. This scholarship can be built upon from here; it can be added on from year to year to help more students,” says Jennifer Gates, president of the 2008 nursing class.
“We didn’t make the decision to do it until the end of January,” says Ms. Gates. “It actually took three months to raise the money.” With help from the ASU Foundation and the Office of Alumni Relations and Development, the class solicited donations via a phonathon, family, and friends.
“With the phonathon, prior nursing graduates were called for donations. We spoke with some graduates from the first graduating nursing class. They were so excited about what we were doing; it was a very positive response,” says Mr. Carnahan.
About a week prior to the pinning ceremony, the class had not yet met its goal of $10,000. “A week before graduation, we were a little more than $200 shy of our goal, then we received a donation to finish it off. The week of graduation we received even more unexpected donations,” Ms. Gates says.
“The rigor of the nursing curriculum makes it extremely difficult to work and meet the demands of the program. Money is a real issue for most of our nursing students because many of them are heads of households, single parents with children, or experience the stress of going from a two-paycheck household to a one-paycheck household.
"Through the establishment of this scholarship, the Nursing Class of 2008 will definitely make the path smoother and better for future students who follow their path,” says Dr. Price.
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