Entrance to Wesley's nursing department Whetstone/ Kim Manahan

By Melissa Boyd (Whetstone Staff Writer)

Federal grants for graduate nursing students in Delaware have increased this year by about $20,000, and now total more than $150,000.

“At Wesley, graduate students receive money based on their amount of schooling, rather than just grade point average,” said Dr. Lucille Gambardella, head of the nursing department.

The money that the college receives goes directly to students, she said. It helps pay for tuition, textbooks, clinical supplies, lab expenses, and provides a monthly stipend.

The grant is provided by the Federal Department of Health and Human Services.

In exchange, recipients are required to accept employment at a Nursing Scholarship Program-approved facility, and work there for at least two years. They must also obtain a nursing license.

In order to apply for the grant, the student must be a U.S. citizen, or have permanent residence, be enrolled in a professional registered nursing program, and be free of any federal judgment liens and service commitments.

Wesley has received more than $44.5 thousand from the Department of Health and Services this year.

The grant decreased from last year’s $44,990 because the University of Delaware got more grant money this year.

“The grants are dispersed to the schools based on a formula where the students are from and how much of a shortage for nurses there are in the area,” Gambardella said.