Excelsior College today announced a $75,000 award from the Hearst Foundations to fund scholarships for high-achieving, low-income students entering the final phase of the College’s associate degree nursing program, the Clinical Performance in Nursing Examination® (CPNE). The Foundations’ interests in success in higher education, access to high quality health care, and economic independence for families are joined in providing these scholarships.
The CPNE is the capstone clinical performance examination which affirms graduates of the program possess the knowledge and skills required of a new graduate registered nurse. The CPNE is administered in an acute care hospital over a two and one-half day period. As well as being an academic challenge, the experience is a financial hurdle. In addition to the exam’s cost, students incur travel and lodging costs, and often also miss work to participate. The William Randolph Hearst Scholarships make it possible for students to complete their degree without a period of saving to meet these expenses.
Students who are CPNE-eligible with a GPA of 3.0 or better, and who are identified by the FAFSA as low-income, will be invited to complete a scholarship application. A scholarship committee will review all applications and recommend recipients. The first William Randolph Hearst Scholarships were offered to associate degree nursing students in 2010 following a $40,000 award from the Hearst Foundations. This second award will defray the cost of CPNE practice workshops and exam registration for 38 students.