Three doctoral students from the West Virginia University School of Nursing have been chosen for the highly competitive Jonas Nurse Leader Scholars Program from the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare. 

Amy Bruce, a student in the WVU School of Nursing’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program and a senior lecturer at the School’s WVU Tech campus, and Monica Iaquinta and Karen Jagiello, both students in the School’s PhD program, each will receive a $10,000 grant over a two-year period, which will be matched by the School of Nursing for a total of $20,000 for each student, to be used for tuition and other academic needs.

The women are three of only 425 individuals in the U.S. to be recognized as 2016-18 Jonas Center Nurse Leader Scholars.

Established in 2008, the program was created to increase the number of doctorally-prepared faculty available to teach in nursing schools nationwide and the number of nurse leaders providing direct patient care and filling roles as clinical faculty. Sponsored by the Jonas Center, the program provides financial assistance, leadership development and networking support to expand the pipeline of future nurse faculty and advanced practice nurses.

“As our nation faces a critical shortage of skilled and experienced nurses, faculty and nurse leaders, it is important to identify and recruit the best and brightest students. These grants not only help to address these issues, but also provide resources to encourage research and academic opportunities for our future nursing professionals. Amy, Karen and Monica are amazing students who are committed to the field of nursing, and it is wonderful to see them recognized by the Jonas Center with these prestigious awards,” said Tara Hulsey, dean of the WVU School of Nursing.

Bruce’s capstone research project is focused on skin cancer prevention and education with a focus on melanoma. Last year, she successfully submitted a proclamation declaring May as Skin Cancer Awareness Month in West Virginia which was signed by Governor Earl Ray Tomblin.

Iaquinta, who serves as coordinator of practical nursing at United Technical Center in Clarksburg, West Virginia, is studying what it means to establish a home after being homeless.

Jagiello, an assistant professor at James Madison University, is working to better understand the decision making process for women living in rural populations to exclusively breast feed their children.

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(Pictured, left to right: Amy Bruce, Karen Jagiello and Monica Iaquinta)

For more information: Contact: Tara Curtis, WVU School of Nursing, 304-581-1772