Nursing Workforce Diversity (NWD) Program

Announcement Number:

Bureau of Health Workforce

Date(s) to Apply:
09/16/2015 to 11/16/2015

Estimated Award Date:

What is the program?

This announcement solicits applications for the Nursing Workforce Diversity (NWD) program.  Program Purpose The NWD program increases nursing education opportunities for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, including racial and ethnic minorities that are underrepresented among registered nurses by using social determinants to guide the selection of evidence-based approaches that have been successful in retaining students from disadvantaged backgrounds in schools of nursing.  The program supports projects that provide student stipends or scholarships, stipends for diploma or associate degree nurses to enter a bridge or degree completion program, student scholarships or stipends for accelerated nursing degree programs, pre-entry preparation, advanced education preparation, and retention activities. Program Requirements Eligible institutions must identify and describe the root causes of attrition among students from disadvantaged backgrounds.  The description should include a discussion of the social determinants that inhibit student achievement and success.   Applicants must document how an understanding of the social determinants will be used to guide the selection of appropriate evidence-based approaches[1][2][3][4][5] that have been successful in retaining students from disadvantaged backgrounds (including racial and ethnic minorities) in schools of nursing.  Next, applicants must propose a feasible plan to apply evidence-based strategies to increase retention of students from disadvantaged backgrounds in schools of nursing student.  Successful evidence-based strategies to address student retention should include various combinations of: ·         Academic and peer support ·         Mentoring ·         Institutional and community partnerships ·         Student financial support To accomplish the program goal, applicants are expected to demonstrate that a combination of academic/peer support, mentoring, institutional and community partnerships, and/or student financial support will be effectively used to retain students from disadvantaged backgrounds with low academic achievement who are at risk of failing in schools of nursing. Specifically, applicants must utilize social determinants that affect their target student population’s achievement and success in schools of nursing by: 1.      Implementing at least one partnership with an internal (i.e., institutional) and external (i.e., community) organization to improve academic achievement of students from disadvantaged backgrounds, academic enhancement, science and math instructional enrichment, and mentoring, and 2.      Identifying and addressing institutional structures within schools of nursing that function as barriers to student achievement and academic success. For this funding opportunity, successful applicants must be well positioned  to implement institutional and community partnership models, approaches, and/or strategies that incorporate the social determinants into the design, implementation, and evaluation of student retention programs.  Highly competitive applicants will demonstrate an organizational commitment to diversity, particularly within the field of nursing, document historical challenges with retaining students from disadvantaged backgrounds, present an analysis of the root causes behind those challenges (to include social determinants), and highlight discrete actions (e.g., hired staff, established internal programs and external partnerships) both planned and in progress as part of an evidence-based strategy to increase the retention of students from disadvantaged backgrounds. [1] Noone, J. (2008). The diversity imperative: Strategies to address a diverse nursing workforce. Nursing Forum, 43(3), 133-143. [2] Beacham, T., Askew, R.W., & William, P.R. (2009). Strategies to increase racial/ethnic student participation in the nursing profession. ABNF Journal, 20(3), 69-72. [3] Degazon, C.E. & Mancha, C. (2012). Changing the face of nursing; reducing ethnic and racial disparities in health. Family & Community Health , 35(1), 5-14. [4] Harris, R.C., Rosenberg, L., & O’Rourke, G. (2014). Addressing the challenges of nursing student attrition. Journal of Nursing Education, 53(1), 31-37. [5] Loftin, C., Newman, S.D., Gilden, G., Bond, M.L., & Dumas. B.P. (2013). Moving toward greater diversity: A review of interventions to increase diversity in nursing education. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 24(4), 387-396.

Are you eligible?

Eligible applicants include accredited schools of nursing, nursing centers, academic health centers, State or local governments, and other private or public entities determined appropriate by the Secretary.  Faith-based organizations, community-based organizations, and Tribes and Tribal Organizations that are otherwise eligible can apply for these funds.  Individuals are not eligible to apply.

Schools of nursing affiliated with the proposed project that provide formal degree programs must be accredited by a national nurse education accrediting agency or State approval agency recognized by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education for the purposes of nursing education.  Applicants must submit documentation providing proof of accreditation (e.g., the accreditation letter from the accrediting agency specifically stating that accreditation has been granted and the period of time covered by the accreditation) with the application as Attachment 8.  Applications that do not include document of accreditation in Attachment 8 will be considered non-responsive and will not be considered for funding under this announcement. Links to the accrediting body website will not suffice as evidence of accreditation.


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Jose Santiago-Velez

Phone: (301) 443-0533

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