Marquette University was awarded a nearly $1 million federal grant to provide scholarships for students going into the eldercare workforce.
The $975,000 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant will support the new Nursing Workforce Diversity-Eldercare Enhancement (NWD-E2) program, which is aimed at diversifying and boosting the eldercare workforce in underserved rural and urban areas.
The program will also add new eldercare content and resources, such as online modules, webinars and telehealth visits, to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing curriculum. It will operate in partnership with the Wisconsin Geriatric Education Center, Milwaukee VA Clinic Network and the VA Home Base Primary Care program.
“The goal of the NWD-E2 program is to uniquely transform the eldercare system by targeting the needs — particularly the disparities related to access and delivery of care — present within underserved communities, while simultaneously benefiting students from disadvantaged backgrounds,” said Dr. Terrie Garcia, NWD-E2 project director and coordinator of workforce diversity in the College of Nursing. “Furthermore, the underlying social justice mission of this project commits the College of Nursing to growing nursing workforce diversity and serving vulnerable populations beyond the grant period, which is a powerful and inspirational premise in the higher education space.”
Scholarship recipients will commit to a two-year program of eldercare training. Through the program, a select clinical cohort of up to eight students will participate in a new clinical rotation, providing home-based primary care to elderly veterans in rural and urban communities.
“This grant and this new program will bring about advantages for students and patients alike, now and into the future,” said Dr. Janet Wessel Krejci, dean of the College of Nursing. “It also supports workforce diversity, which is one of the college’s priorities because a more diverse network of nurses will lead to better health care experiences and outcomes.”