Nursing Students

Summer 2013

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CONSA member Kelsey Hembre models scrubs like those sold to raise money for nursing scholarships.

CONSA member Kelsey Hembre models scrubs like those sold to raise money for nursing scholarships.

No one knows the cost of a nursing education better than nursing students. Each year graduating seniors in the College of Nursing Student Association (CONSA) at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center leave a parting gift to enhance the education of those who will come after. The bar was set high in 2012 when the group established the first CONSA scholarship endowment with a gift of $10,000.



“My hope was that each year CONSA would add another $1,000 to $1,500 to the endowment,” said Lindsey Manning, director of development for the college. “Then I got an email from the students in May saying they were adding $10,000 to the fund, essentially doubling the endowment.”



Student leaders in CONSA were equally surprised with the amount.



“We had heard what the Class of 2012 had done, and we didn’t think it was possible for us to raise $10,000 in a single year,” said Lindsay Ribble, CONSA treasurer. “It seemed like an unattainable goal, but there is something about nurses that makes them want to pay it forward.”



Ribble said that attitude was present in “all of our hearts” when they started fundraising. “We wanted to do what we could to make sure that more students could come to the college and learn what we did.”



CONSA’s biggest fundraiser of the year is selling scrubs and supplies to the incoming nursing students. For around $200, first-years can purchase a package that includes two sets of scrubs, a lab coat and a community project polo shirt that they are required to wear in clinical rotation. The sale of fleece jackets, sweat pants and t-shirts also helped contribute to the total.



Ribble said CONSA was also fortunate to receive some money for its service project through the OUHSC Student Activities Board. The annual Health Fair has been CONSA’s main service project for several years. More than 50 volunteers from several HSC colleges provided free health services to the community at Tulakes Elementary School in Oklahoma City.



Manning said she hopes each graduating class will help grow the endowment. She expects the first scholarship to be awarded fall 2014.

“Going through the College of Nursing is not cheap, and it’s not an easy program,” concludes Ribble. “So if there’s anything that we can do to make it easier for someone else to come down that road, we want to do it.”