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Katelyn Kunz Receives Scholarship from Nightingale Awards

by Carol Gullo Mest, Ph.D. Nov 7, 2023
Katelyn Kunz Nightingale Awards IMG_8734

Katelyn Kunz ’25, a junior nursing student, received the Andy Carter tuition scholarship from the Nightingale Awards of Pennsylvania.

The annual gala took place on October 27, 2023. Carol Gullo Mest, Ph.D., chair of graduate nursing programs, is a member of the Nightingale Board. 

Kunz saw the poster for the scholarship in the hallway in the Gambet Center last spring semester. The application consisted of sections including leadership within and outside of school, any honors or awards received in the past, community and volunteer work, any significant certifications held, and finally, why you want to pursue a career in nursing. 

Kunz received a call in late June letting her know that she was the winner of the scholarship. She did not expect that call—they had told her that there were 126 applicants in total and that they choose one or two for each of the different scholarship categories (11 scholarships were given out in total this year). She was so proud and thankful to have been chosen as one of the scholarship recipients. 

Kunz feels that nursing is a very challenging major, but it was extra challenging for her to address her nursing studies as well as being a member of the women’s soccer team. She had to manage her time very well, often studying or completing assignments on the bus to and from the soccer games. 

If struggling with her nursing studies, Kunz often turns to the upperclassmen nursing majors, who are always willing to give her some extra help when she is feeling overwhelmed. Although it has been challenging, soccer helps her to hold herself accountable to ensure that all work is done on time. Kunz often reminds herself of why she wants to be a nurse.

In 1989, Jayne Carson Felgen, chief nursing officer at the former Osteopathic Hospital in Lancaster, recognized the need to promote and support nursing in Pennsylvania as an essential strategy to recruit and retain nurses in order to meet the state's future health care needs. She and other visionary nurse leaders were the driving force behind the establishment of the Nightingale Awards of Pennsylvania—a statewide, nonprofit organization focused on recognizing exemplary nursing practice and granting scholarships to students pursuing degrees in nursing at all levels.

A volunteer Board of Trustees, consisting of individuals who are leaders in nursing, business, industry, and other health care fields, has guided the organization since its inception. Over the past 32 years, NAP has provided more than 200 nursing scholarships totaling more than $410,000 and has honored more than 800 Pennsylvania nurses at its annual gala.