University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies Receives $250,000 Hearst Foundations Grant


Hearst Foundations grant will address U.S. nursing shortage through $10,000 scholarships to help 25 accelerated nursing students enter the workforce within one year.


The University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies (SONHS) has been awarded a $250,000 grant from the Hearst Foundations to support scholarships for nursing students enrolled in the SONHS’ Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program.

Due to an aging population, rising numbers of retiring nurses, and a limited capacity for educating future nurses, the United States continues to wrestle with a nursing shortage exacerbated by both the COVID-19 pandemic and professional “burnout,” also known as “moral injury.” According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 194,500 openings for registered nurses are expected nationwide each year through 2030, but U.S. nursing school enrollment is not growing fast enough to meet this need. In Florida, the problem is particularly acute, with the Florida Hospital Association projecting a shortfall of 59,100 nurses in the state by 2035.

To help meet this immediate demand for nurses, SONHS offers an intensive three-semester ABSN program that prepares students who already hold four-year undergraduate degrees in another field of study to enter the workforce as nursing professionals within a year. This efficient route to licensure is helping grow the nursing workforce while increasing the number of baccalaureate-trained nurses.

But the ABSN program’s exceptional growth over the past decade—a 70 percent increase in enrollment since its inception in 2013, according to the University of Miami—has taxed the school’s ability to help meet students’ demonstrated financial need, and cost is frequently a barrier to enrollment. Scholarship support is critical, as students often have exhausted eligibility for financial aid while earning prior degrees. In addition, because the compressed timeframe of the accelerated academic curriculum is especially demanding, students are required to enroll full-time; therefore, the ability to work outside of the classroom to offset tuition costs is limited.

A $250,000 grant from the Hearst Foundations will provide $10,000 scholarships to 25 highly-qualified, full-time ABSN students demonstrating financial need. The scholarships will make it possible for students to complete their studies who might otherwise not have had the means to enroll in this prestigious program. The support also will reduce the debt burden—and stress level—of graduates starting their first jobs in nursing. 

“This generous gift from the Hearst Foundations will significantly expand our ability to provide tuition assistance to an increasingly competitive and talented pool of applicants to our accelerated nursing program,” said SONHS Dean and Professor Cindy L. Munro, PhD, RN, ANP-BC, FAAN, FAANP, FAAAS. “As seasoned professionals making a career change, these students are driven, highly motivated, and altruistic, bringing a maturity and acumen that younger graduates may not yet have fully developed. The vast majority of our accelerated nursing program students find employment quickly upon graduation, filling nursing positions in South Florida and beyond. The return on investment for the students and for our community is high, but access to this opportunity is the key.”

Support from the Hearst Foundations has long supported the academic mission of SONHS, from the William Randolph Hearst Endowed Scholarship, established in 1990 for traditional 4-year BSN students, to the naming of the “William Randolph Hearst Operating Room” in the School’s Simulation Hospital Advancing Research and Education (S.H.A.R.E.™), a 5-story, 41,000-square-foot hub for simulation-based education, in addition to support for other areas at UM throughout the years.

“The Hearst Foundations’ long-standing confidence in our school and their new investment in scholarships for our vital accelerated nursing program will empower us to address the major challenges we face in today’s everchanging health care environment,” said Dean Munro. “Moreover, because our ABSN program graduates reflect South Florida’s diversity—more than half on average identify as a person of color—these Hearst scholarships will help us increase equity and diversity in the nursing profession while raising standards of care in multicultural service areas.”


About the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies (SONHS)

For over seven decades, the SONHS has pursued its mission to transform health care through education, research, innovation, and service across the hemisphere. Our faculty rank among the leading scholars and experts in their fields, helping the SONHS earn top U.S. News & World Report and NIH research funding rankings, and preparing students to achieve some of the highest state board passing rates in the country. Our facilities include the Simulation Hospital-Advancing Research and Education (S.H.A.R.E.™) facility, a 5-story, 41,000-square-foot hub for simulation-based education, and the 53,000-square-foot M. Christine Schwartz Center for Nursing and Health Studies, which features smart classrooms, clinical practice labs, high-tech computer labs, and state-of-the-art biobehavioral lab. Located South Florida, home to some of the most racially and ethnically diverse, health-at-risk communities in the nation, SONHS is building a diverse, culturally proficient health care workforce and empowering students to become outstanding health leaders engaged in novel, optimistic, world-changing careers. To learn more about SONHS, visit


About the Hearst Foundations

The mission of the Hearst Foundations is to identify and fund outstanding nonprofits to ensure that people of all backgrounds in the United States can build healthy, productive, and satisfying lives. Through its grantmaking, the Hearst Foundations support well-established nonprofit organizations that address significant issues within their major areas of focus—culture, education, health, and social service—and that primarily serve large demographic and/or geographic constituencies. The Foundations seek to achieve their mission by funding approaches that: create sustainable employment and productive career paths for adults; improve health and quality of life; increase academic achievement though access to high-quality educational options; promote the arts and sciences as a cornerstone of society; and support family stability and self-sufficiency. For more information about the Hearst Foundation, visit