Animas Surgical Hospital is pleased to announce the launch of a new scholarship program focused on preparing future nurses. The program will be eligible for local students in Fort Lewis College’s new Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.
Through a multi-year $150,000 endowment, the scholarship will be awarded to one student each year, beginning with the nursing program’s first class in 2023. The award will go to a student who graduates from a high school in La Plata County to assist with the cost of tuition, books, fees, and housing.
“Nurses are at the heart of the healthcare experience, and there is a clear and significant need for more nurses to enter the workforce. We are hopeful that the scholarship will inspire local students to enter the health care field and continue to work and live in southwest Colorado,” said Joe Theine, CEO, Animas Surgical Hospital.
According to the Durango School District 9-R, a large number of local students have a strong interest and natural ability in health care. Durango high school and middle school students annually participate in YouScience, a digital program designed to connect students with career opportunities. Of the 986 Durango High School students who participated, the highest aptitude area was Healthcare Practitioners and Technical. “Our schools support the community by creating a future-ready workforce that employers need,” said Dr. Karen Cheser, Superintendent of Durango School District 9-R. “We are grateful that Animas Surgical Hospital shares our vision by offering a path for a student to become a nurse.”
The nursing scholarship is just one of many ways local businesses, non-profits, and educational institutions are combining forces to address workforce needs and support students with an interest in health care. “We are proud to see Fort Lewis College and Animas Surgical Hospital demonstrating this approach through this scholarship opportunity and look forward to continuing to see education and industry institutions working together in the future to support our entire region,” said Jessica Morrison, Executive Director for the Southwest Colorado Education Collaborative.
Animas Surgical Hospital is continuing to invest in additional education and workforce development programs to train the next generation of nurses, physicians, and allied health professionals. Other partnerships include clinical rotations with Pueblo Community College students, a residency program for nurses in their first year through the Colorado Center for Nursing Excellence, high school internships through the Business Education Connection, and a partnership with the Southwest Colorado Area Health Education Center.
ABOUT ANIMAS SURGICAL HOSPITAL: Animas Surgical Hospital offers advanced surgical care, diagnostic imaging, 24/7 emergency services, urgent care, occupational medicine, and internal medicine. Animas Surgical Hospital is proudly owned and operated by physicians who live and work in Southwest Colorado.