WINSTED/PRESS RELEASE — The Northwest CT Community Foundation Women & Girls Fund has awarded a grant in the amount of $1,520 to 16 students in Northwestern Connecticut Community College’s Nursing program. Because of restrictions at the clinical sites, due to COVID -19 protocols, it has been difficult for the nursing students to complete all of their required in-person clinical hours. The NCCC Nursing program administrators were able to procure additional sites for clinical experiences for the students.
One of those sites is the Community Health & Wellness Center, which is willing to accept 16 NCCC students over the course of the semester, but the students are required to undergo a background check and drug screening to participate. It is estimated that this would cost between $75 – $100 per student for a total of $1,200 – $1,520. The Women & Girls Fund responded with a grant to cover the program fees required for the nursing students to complete their clinical experience at the Community Health & Wellness Center site.
Last spring, the Women & Girls Fund also provided support for another group of Northwestern Connecticut Community College nursing students. The students in the graduating class were pulled out of their clinical rotation in March and were unable to return prior to graduation in May. After completing the nursing program, all graduates must apply for licensure and pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX). It is a rigorous exam and students prepare for weeks prior to taking it. This course, however, comes with a cost and many of our students faced financial challenges that would have prohibited them from being able to afford the prep course. The Women & Girls Fund provided a grant to cover the cost of the online preparatory course for the entire graduating class. Out of a graduating class of 32 nursing students, 30 passed the NCLEX on their first attempt, which enabled them to graduate and quickly begin their careers in healthcare.
The Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation Women & Girls Fund was established as a giving circle in 1999 by a small group of women who shared a concern for the real-life needs of local women and girls, the Women and Girls Fund has grown to more than 200 supporters who help women and girls develop economic self-sufficiency by means of education, financial literacy, and social services. The Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation’s mission is to enrich the quality of life for residents of its 20-town service area in Connecticut’s Northwest Corner through the generosity of fundholders. The Community Foundation seeks to enrich the quality of life for residents of Northwest Connecticut by inspiring local philanthropy, convening stakeholders in community welfare, strengthening the regional nonprofits network, and fostering collaborative funding partnerships.
Constance Hawkins MSN, RN, NCCC’s Division Director, Nursing, Allied Health and Veterinary Technology, in response to the two occasions that Northwestern nursing students have received invaluable support from the Women & Girls Fund, said, “We are extremely grateful for the support that our students have received from the Women & Girls Fund. Alleviating some of the financial hurdles for students to become nurses is a win-win situation. It is our mission to educate skilled and caring healthcare professionals who will give back to their community.”