Financial Aid for Student Nurses

Amid diminishing job prospects in many areas, what stands as a notable exception is the growing demand for qualified nurses in United States. This comes at a time when there already is a shortage of capable nursing educators. Therefore, while demand for nursing personnel burgeons, it is also becoming difficult to get into nursing programs.

In fact, many nursing institutes have fairly long waiting lists of aspiring students. Given the situation above, many hospitals in United States have come forward to offer financial aid of different types so that more and more students feel encouraged to enroll for nursing programs.

Even educational institutes are not lagging behind to extend financial aid to meet the crisis of shortage that is currently plaguing the healthcare sector. Despite comparatively easy availability of financial aid for nursing courses, it is always advisable to explore different avenues before deciding to opt for the most ideal one.

Funding nursing education is not a one-step process irrespective of whether you want to study a bachelor program or an advanced degree. Selecting the right financial aid calls for diligence and ability to piece together disparate information from several sources in order to find out the best deal. As you will see, while some financial aids cover part of your educational costs, there are others that cover entire educational costs albeit with strings attached.

While at it, it is important to bear in mind that financial aids are not always reserved for the most needy and/or those with fairly high grades. Often there is a pie to meet your individual need, and the same holds true for others. The nursing shortage has opened a lot of creative ways to avail financial aid to fund your education as well as new paths to complete your education in an orderly manner.

Okay, you want to start now! But wait. Remember when you search for financial aid, you may be waylaid by lucrative propositions. Not all of them are real. In fact, there are any number of frauds and scams in the financial aid business.

The Federal Trade Commission has lined up a list of tips for students to assist you in this regard. Ensure that you read these tips carefully and refer to them often. Apply for FAFSA Even as you approach the financial aid office of your chosen institution, it will be a good idea to first fill out your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

You may either access FAFSA online or get a copy from your institute’s financial aid office. FAFSA application needs to be completed each year within stipulated deadlines. After submitting FAFSA application, you may be able to check its status online and make corrections as necessary.

Visit ANA Web Site Your quest for the ideal financial aid to fund your study should next include a visit to the American Nurses Association (ANA) web site. Once here, you will be exposed to a treasure of rich information to which you gain access to know about financial aid offered by ANA.

Proceed to the State Boards of Nursing and begin exploring if there are additional offers from your home state as well as the state where your institute is located, if different from home state.

Do not forget to obtain contact information and respective web site addresses for professional nursing organizations from the ANA site. For example, if you want to enroll for emergency nursing, you should access the Emergency Nurses Association web site to find if financial aids are available.

Doesn’t Your Institute Offer Financial Aid? Do not fail to find out if your college or university has financial aid available to nursing students. It may as well be that your institute’s financial aid serves your need better than others. Obtain this information from your college’s financial aid office, or the nursing department.

NHSC Program An alternative to traditional financial aid is the popular program for family nurse practitioners and nurse-midwives offered by the National Health Service Corps (NHSC).

This government program encourages graduates to work in under-served areas of the country. In exchange for financial aid like tuition, fees, and maintenance allowance, one year of employment is required for each year of funding.

Copyright 2006 Linda Raye