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Nursing Scholarship Program

Program Descriptions

Program Number



Nursing Scholarship Program


Federal Agency




Public Health Service Act, Section 846, as amended, Nurse Reinvestment Act of 2002, Public Law 107-205.






To increase the supply of registered nurses (RN) in approved health care facilities with a critical shortage of nurses by providing service-obligated scholarships to nursing students.


Types of Assistance

Direct Payments for Specified Use.


Uses and Use Restrictions

Service-obligated scholarships are awarded to full-time and part-time students of nursing. Scholarships pay tuition and required fees to the school, a monthly stipend to students and a single annual payment to the student to assist with other reasonable educational expenses. Reasonable expenses include books, supplies, equipment, uniforms, travel, for the provision of clinical service, etc. The program requires a one year of service with a minimum 2-year service commitment post graduation. A maximum of four years of educational support may be awarded. Service obligation must be fulfilled at a health care facility with a critical shortage of nurses. These facilities currently include Indian Health Service facilities, Native Hawaiian Health Centers, hospitals, Federally Qualified Health Centers, rural health clinics, nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, home health agencies, hospice programs, State or local Public Health Departments, and ambulatory surgical centers.


Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

The applicant must be a U.S. citizen or national, enrolled or accepted for enrollment in a fully accredited US academic institution with a graduate, baccalaureate, or associate degree or diploma nursing program. The applicant must be free of any Federal judgment liens or service obligation, have not defaulted on a federal debt and have no conflicting service obligations. Financial need is also reviewed as part of the eligibility determination. The applicant must submit an application and a signed contract, agreeing to accept payment of scholarship funds and provide health care services in a health care facility with a critical shortage of nurses for a minimum of two years.

Beneficiary Eligibility

United States citizens or nationals enrolled or accepted for enrollment in a fully accredited graduate, baccalaureate, associate degree or diploma nursing program.


The applicant must submit an enrollment/acceptance letter from the school or university and proof of US citizenship at the time of application. Applicants must also provide documentation of Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The Department of Education's Student Aid Report (SAR) from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is also required.


Application and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

This program is excluded for coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure

Applications are generally solicited by a program announcement in the HRSA forecast and application details can be found at Applications and required forms for this program can also be obtained from the HRSA Call Center at 12530 Parklawn Drive, Suite 350, Rockville, MD 20852 or by calling (877) 464-4772 for guidance and instructions. Potential applicants can request email notification on the NSP website when applications become available on-line.

Award Procedure

The NSP awards are very competitive and the Program anticipates more applicants for scholarship awards than there are funds available. The applications of individuals who meet the eligibility criteria are scored numerically. All applicants will receive a letter about their selection for a scholarship award. Applicants who will be notified of the disposition of their application.


Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Notification is made within 4-5 months after deadline for receipt of application.





Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

This program has no statutory formula or matching requirements.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Each award covers one to four years of educational support, as requested. No awardees may receive more than four years of support.


Post Assistance Requirements


The academic institution where the student is enrolled must complete and submit a Verification of Enrollment Form to NSP each semester as a full-time student pursuing the program for which the scholarship was awarded. The employing critical shortage facility must complete and send a semi-annual Employment Certification Form verifying that the participating nurse is providing full-time or part-time continuous service as a RN. The certification includes a signature by an appropriate official of the facility.






Financial Information

Account Identification



FY 07 $10,000,000; FY 08 est $14,000,000; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

$20,000 - $220,000; $55,000.


Program Accomplishments

The estimate awards for FY 07 is 196 and for FY 08, 257.


Regulations, Guidelines and Literature

This program is subject to the provisions of 45 CFR Part 92 for State, local and tribal governments and 45 CFR Part 74 for institutions of higher education, hospitals, other nonprofit organizations and commercial organizations.


Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

Nursing Scholarship Program, Division of Applications and Awards, Bureau of Clinician Recruitment and Service (BCRS), Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services, Room 8A-55, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857. Telephone: (301) 443-4829. The HRSA Call Center at or 1 (877)464-4772, Monday through Friday (except Federal Holidays).

Headquarters Office

Grants Management Office: Rick Goodman, Director, Division of Grants Management, (301) 443-2728 Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 11A-16. Helen Harpold, Acting Chief of Health Services Branch: (301) 443-3262; John Gallicchilo, Branch Chief of Research and Training Branch: (301) 443-3099; Dorothy Kelley, Branch Chief of Government and Special Focus Branch: (301) 443-3288.

Web Site Address


Related Programs

93.288, National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program


Examples of Funded Projects

Scholarships covering tuition, monthly stipends and payments for other reasonable education expenses made to nursing students.


Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Funding preference is defined as the funding of a specified category of group of approved applicants ahead of other categories or groups of approved applicants. As provided in the amendment in section 846(e) of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act, a funding preference is given to eligible applicants with the greatest financial need. NSP will use the Department of Education's Student Aid Report (SAR) from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to evaluate financial need.


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