St. John Fisher nursing school receives $1.1 million grant

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St. John Fisher University’s Wegmans School of Nursing has received $1.1 million to boost the pipeline of diverse nurses. The school is one of eight grant awardees in the state.

The funds, spread over three years, come from the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Nursing Workforce Diversity Program. It marks the fifth year of funding for the university’s Fisher Improves Nursing through Diversity program, and surpasses $5 million received since 2016.

Tricia Gatlin, dean of the School of Nursing, will serve as the project director of this award.  

“This grant will allow us to make deep, sustainable, structural change that’s going to improve the lives of our students, our faculty, and the health outcomes of those in the Rochester area,” Gatlin says. “The School of Nursing has a mission of providing a strong nursing education that addresses the ever-changing health care needs and demands of our communities.”

FIND aims to increase the number of underrepresented minority students in the nursing program through the FIND Student program and increase diversity within the nursing school’s faculty, officials say.

Students enrolled in the FIND program each year will receive an annual scholarship and support services. These scholars will work with a student success facilitator within a peer-to-peer tutoring program. A mentoring initiative will help students engage with alumni and Fisher nurses in the field.

Another goal is to create a culturally inclusive and supportive environment where students of all backgrounds can feel a sense of belonging and receive the support that they need to succeed, Fisher officials say.

“With the establishment of the FIND program, our mission will be furthered by creating a culturally inclusive environment for students and faculty of all backgrounds as we work to improve health care outcomes of underrepresented populations,” Gatlin says.

Smriti Jacob is Rochester Beacon managing editor. The Beacon welcomes comments from readers who adhere to our comment policy including use of their full, real name.

9 thoughts on “St. John Fisher nursing school receives $1.1 million grant

  1. All good stuff. All money allocated toward opportunity.

    That’s the good news. The other news, which is actually not really news, but rather the same old concern. The K-12 educational journey within the Rochester City School District (RCSD) is not giving kids an opportunity to take advantage of the program at St. John Fischer. (and others) Why, you ask? Because the education SYSTEM suffers from a poor graduation rate. Thousands do not have the opportunity to attend college because they need that all important,…. diploma. Too many drop out to generational poverty. It is the SYSTEM in place withing the RCSD leadership that fails the student. It’s NOT the teacher and not even the student. It’s the system. At what point in their educational journey are those RCSD students informed of this St. John Fisher program? Or any other program, any other profession, any other career? They are not. These programs are for the few who survive the poor K-12 education journey. If you don’t provide a solid educational foundation, kids will not graduate and those that do are poorly prepared for the college level journey. Please,….PLEASE,…address the failing system within the RCSD. That will give all an equal, a fair opportunity, to attend and take advantage of these fine programs. Show kids careers and professions during their K-12 journey so they will connect the ‘boring’ academics with the many opportunities that exist for graduates. Teach the way kids learn. Keep them focused on the prize! Have the RCSD assist them in discovering their innate skill, their gift, and,….help them to recognize and connect with those innate skills/gifts. That is their mission. It aint rocket science. If it can be done in the county, it can be done in the city.

  2. This is great news! Our nursing community is really stepping up to and out on these issues. The University of Rochester SON is well down the road in these efforts and has been the recipient of several national diversity awards for its student, staff and faculty DEI efforts under the leadership of Dean Kathy Rideout. All of these efforts contribute to changing the culture of health care in this community!!

    • ……and little to none,…from the RCSD. Doesn’t that bother you, Madeline Schmitt. Is that fair to the youth of the city? Does anyone even care? Why is the youth within the City of Rochester, written off by higher institutions of learning? Apparently those institutions of higher learning are not a smart as they think they are. They are either incapable of teaching kids the way they learn, or could care less. It appears to be the “could care less”.

      • Of course it bothers me. I grew up in the RCSD, before it went “belly up.” Justin Murphy’s book tells the whole sad story. It helped me see that some situations I experienced as personal were more systemic. I don’t know about St John Fisher’s program, but I do know that the UR SON has been reaching out to city students and bringing them to the settings where nurses work and showing what they do, to help them see what they might become. The leadership has also helped support the creation of a local chapter of the Black Nurses Association [RBNA] building role models of success that city kids desperately need.

  3. …..and the RCSD youth keep getting passed over. What percentage of the RCSD kids graduate? What percentage graduates with a level of education required for them to survive the first year of college? Need I go on? Just keep praising the financially blessed colleges and “you will always have the poor among you”. I think it’s unnecessary and really kind of cruel.

  4. Please see my previous answer to this comment about RCSD kids being “passed over”. But there needs to be much more effort at K-12 levels. I don’t know what to say about RCSD “reform” to improve educational quality- good people have tried, and have not succeeded in overcoming the resistance to models of change, especially with regard to school segregation.

  5. Over all, a pathetic system. I have tried for over a decade to introduce and implement a program that will show kids professions and careers as a major part of their education journey. I really don’t want to hear about the segregation excuse. I’m tired of complaints, I’m tired of the colleges and universities who look the other way with their bulging “saving accounts”. Their mission is the bottom line of their business. Lets call it what it is, it’s big business. Now I know you want to point at the UR/East High School effort. Do you think for one minute that the UR would have taken on that rescue effort without that “check”? And with all the talk about their graduation rate up to 73% from the thirties,…why,…why has that not been replicated so all the kids in the RCSD can benefit from that “success”? The SYSTEM is failing our kids. The SYSTEM is fat dumb and happy. If they need someone to blame, look in the mirror and you have the answer. Don’t blame this on anything other than incompetence. I turned in an education enhancement to the Mayors office. I received a call and told them that I would move back to Rochester if they were serious about addressing the problems. The silence is deafening. The only thing standing in the way of education success in Rochester is the SYSTEM and those who reside there.

  6. Madeline,….to sum it up, stop blaming anything and everything. Accountability is what’s missing. And regarding “segregation”, I’m a white guy who has for some 13 plus years advocated for a change in the SYSTEM to give kids, ALL kids within the RCSD a chance to discover their gift,… their innate skill. That’s all. Maximize the opportunity. They deserve the opportunity to succeed. I don’t, I haven’t been doing this for me,….I could walk away and just ignore it,…but I give a damn about the next generation. Good people have tried, you say. And because good people have tried and failed,…segregation gets the stage again. Stop blaming and start doing!

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