When choosing to complete a nursing degree in the state of Kentucky, the best financial aid is actually provided by institutions that provide scholarships and free money for school through their own programs.

Much of these scholarships and grants offer full tuition or comprehensive funding for your tuition and campus housing needs, and even for resources and other costs you may incur during your nursing education.

There are a great deal of opportunities for those choosing to enter a nursing program after graduation from high school or just to return to school to further their nursing degrees or to get a nursing degree.

This is the best time to take advantage of this free money.

As there is such a high demand for nurses in Kentucky, there is almost guaranteed post-graduation job placement in many of the best hospitals and medical facilities within the state of Kentucky.

Finding the Right Scholarship

Finding the scholarship and grant that is right for your funding needs is a matter of completing your FAFSA or getting an SAR, or student aid report, from the financial aid office of the school you choose to attend, or checking online for some of the following great opportunities in order to see if you qualify and where to properly apply for each.

Though some of the following may not be right for you or you may not be able to qualify for more than one through a program, the amount you can possibly receive even from just one scholarship or grant can greatly increase your chance to fund a quality nursing education that will provide you with the necessary knowledge and skills to enter the nursing field and grow throughout any hospital or facility.

The following agencies and educational institutions may provide more than the scholarships and grants shown, so take the time to explore each appropriately for other opportunities that aren’t listed.

Kentucky Board of Nursing

Nursing Incentive Scholarship Fund

The Nursing Incentive Scholarship Fund was implemented to provide scholarships only to Kentucky residents who will be attending an approved pre-licensure nursing program or graduate nursing program. The student that is proven to be the most qualified for a scholarship through this fund will be selected by the Kentucky Board of Nursing and awarded $3,000 per year of attendance. The funds can be used towards any cost the student incurs during academia, including housing and resources to use during attendance.

To be chosen for a scholarship, the student must be a Kentucky resident that is currently attending a nursing program either in or out of the state of Kentucky and currently completing the core nursing courses required. Prerequisite students will not be chosen for a scholarship through this fund and are not encouraged to apply.

Preference for a scholarship will be given to those with a demonstrated financial need, LPNs that are seeking an RN degree, and RNs that are seeking a BSN degree, and is renewable as long as the student maintains the academic requirements and an appropriate GPA.

The following are requirements for eligibility:

  • Pre-licensure: 15 credit hours of published nursing program requirements per academic year
  • Graduate: 9 credit hours of published nursing program requirements per academic year
  • Specified GPA

Western Kentucky University

Beginning Freshmen Scholarship

The Beginning Freshmen Scholarship is offered through Western Kentucky University to students graduating high school and entering a program on campus. The scholarship is awarded to students that graduate high school with the required GPA, and is based on the student’s rank in class as well as ACT and/or SAT scores and any extracurricular activities participated in as well as leadership demonstrated.

Returning Student Scholarship

The Returning Student Scholarship is awarded as a renewal to the Beginning Freshmen Scholarship and awarded to those students that have maintained the appropriate GPA and are currently enrolled in Western Kentucky University full time. This award is based on college academic achievement during enrollment.

Community College/Junior College Transfers Scholarship

The Community College/Junior College Transfers Scholarship, also provided through Western Kentucky University, is available to students transferring to this university after completion of two years at a community or junior college. The award is based on academic achievement.

Alumni Grant Program

The Alumni Grant Program is offered to qualified non-resident students that have a parent, step-parent, or grandparent that received an Associate, Baccalaureate, Master’s, or specialist degree or has previously completed a certified program from Western Kentucky University or those universities that are part of WKU. The requirements are based on academic achievement.

University of Kentucky

Need-Based Scholarships

Need-based scholarships are available through the University of Kentucky and are awarded from $500 to full tuition based on need. The scholarships are awarded to students who:

  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Achieved a score of 28+ on ACT or 1250+ on SAT
  • Complete FAFSA and generate an EFC of less than $3,850

Currently Enrolled Scholarships

Currently Enrolled Scholarships are available through the University of Kentucky to those currently enrolled in the university and are awarded from $500 to full tuition depending on need. The requirements are:

  • Demonstrated financial need
  • GPA of at least 3.0
  • Completion of FAFSA and generated EFC of less than $3,850

University of Kentucky Academic Scholarship Program

The University of Kentucky offers the comprehensive University of Kentucky Academic Scholarship Program to students that represent a high academic standard and accomplishment. The program presents several scholarships that are available (one per student) and provides various awards based on the actual scholarship and eligibility requirements.

Flagship Scholarship

  • Incoming freshmen with 26-27 ACT or 1170-1240 SAT
  • 3.30 GPA un-weighted
  • Automatically receives $1,500 for first academic year

The Otis A. Singletary Scholarship

  • 31 ACT or 1660 SAT
  • 3.75 GPA
  • Full tuition
  • Room and board
  • Yearly stipend of $1,500
  • 4-year award

Presidential Scholarship

  • Full tuition
  • In-state university
  • 4-year award

Commonwealth Scholarship

  • Kentucky resident only
  • $2,500/year for 4 years
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