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Northwest Health Science Scholarship Initiative’s John William Jackson Fund Doubles Scholarships for ISU Nursing Students

May 23, 2022

Ryan Gerulf, Director of Development for the Kasiska Division of Health Sciences, Bill “Action” Jackson, Northwest Health Science and Scholarship Initiative President, Rex Force, Vice President for Health Sciences and Senior Vice Provost for Idaho State University, Teresa Conner, Dean for the College of Health at Idaho State University, Kevin Satterlee, President of Idaho State University

Idaho State University School of Nursing students will receive $28,000 in scholarships this year from the Northwest Health Science Scholarship Initiative - John William Jackson Fund.

The Northwest Health Science Scholarship Initiative - John William Jackson Fund (NWHSSI) has doubled its annual funding for nursing and health science scholarships to $200,000. During the Fund’s second grant award cycle, 100 scholarships of $2,000 each were awarded to 12 schools in Idaho, Oregon, Washington and Utah. 
“Now more than ever, recruiting and retaining qualified candidates for nursing and other health science professions is critical,” Cy Gearhard, John William Jackson Fund nursing and health science adviser, said in announcing the increased commitment.
“For some time, leaders in health care have been planning specific strategies to mitigate the shortage of nurses due to upcoming baby boomer retirements,” she said. “The global pandemic has further exacerbated the nursing workforce challenge we are all facing. In many cases, the limiting factor when it comes to recruiting the student with the personal attributes and life experiences necessary to be an excellent health care professional is financial funding.” 
The Initiative builds on earlier scholarship support from the Jackson family, John William Jackson Fund (JWJF) officers, friends, supporters and iYERP metal recycling partners.  Since 2017, $445,000 has been awarded to nursing and health science programs throughout the Northwest. A majority of the funds are gathered by recycling metals and other construction materials from construction projects around the Pacific Northwest. 
“Through JWJF generous donors and the relentless activism of Bill “Action” Jackson, future nurses can reach their dreams, and our communities will have the health care team required for the future,” said Gearhard, formerly St. Luke's Health System chief nursing officer and vice president of patient care services. 
The Fund was established in memory of John William Jackson, a Georgetown University psychology graduate who lost his life in a climbing accident in the Kyrgyz Republic in 2000. 


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