The Iris Almeria Davis Scholarship fund has, over the years, assisted many nursing students and practitioners in Bermuda to realise their dreams.
Instituted by the Bermuda Nurses Association (BNA), with funding support from the CHUBB Charitable Foundation, the scheme provides financial support to outstanding students pursuing courses in nursing and registered nurses seeking to sharpen their professional skills at an accredited institution on the island or abroad.The scholarship is awarded, each year, to two undergraduate nursing students and a registered nurse who are selected among numerous applicants after a vigorous selection process.
Due to the overwhelming number of qualified applicants, however, the fund management committee was compelled, in 2022, to offer an additional award, increasing the number of recipients from three to four.
Janice Sealey-Khan was among the four recipients of the scholarship in 2022.
She tells Shehub.tv that the scholarship helped to ease some of the financial burden of tuition payment, bringing her journey to an MSN degree in nursing administration that much closer to fruition.
“This scholarship has facilitated in narrowing the financial gap that the high cost of tuition made in my budget, and I am very thankful for this award,” she says.
For Janice, the scholarship award has not only eased the financial burden she would have grappled with in her quest to advance her education but also “has made me more determined to attain my educational objectives”.
She can now live her dream of “delivering safe, compassionate high quality nursing care” to the sick and contribute her quota to a healthy society while leaving an indelible mark in the nursing profession.
Whitney Matthew is another beneficiary of the scholarship. She is among the few to have benefitted from the fund both at undergraduate and graduate levels.
Until she reached the age of 16, when she landed her first job at a health facility, Whitney was uncertain about which career to pursue. However, working under a nurse at the facility sparked her interest in the profession, she says, and then she decided to pursue a course in nursing.
Whitney subsequently gained admission to Hampton University to study nursing, but she faced a challenge—how was she going to finance her studies.
But the Iris Almeria Davis Scholarship provided financial support to help pay for her undergraduate degree, which she commenced in 2011.
After graduating and practicing as a registered nurse for a couple of years, Whitney was a scholarship recipient again in 2018, where she went on to pursue a Masters of Science degree in Gerontology/ Management of Aging Services.
She has served in various capacities in the healthcare sector both in Bermuda and abroad and is currently the Acting Nurse Coordinator at Lefroy House Care Community.
Both Janice and Whitney both encourage aspiring nurses to apply for the Iris Almeria Davis Scholarship.
Speaking at a ceremony to announce the 2022 recipients of the scholarship, a spokesperson for the BNA stated that the increasing number of applicants was an indication of the need to extend such support to many others wishing to study nursing or further their studies in the field but are unable to do so due to financial challenges.
However, the fund currently is in no position to offer financial assistance to more applicants and will need the support of the general public and benevolent organisations to cater for a greater number of students annually.
To learn more about scholarship opportunities for aspiring nurses, click here.