KCON students earn national grants

 Pictured are, back row from left, Cynthia McCurren, Cynthia Coviak, Yvette Petti; front row from left, Leda Evans and Rachel Cardosa.
Pictured are, back row from left, Cynthia McCurren, Cynthia Coviak, Yvette Petti; front row from left, Leda Evans and Rachel Cardosa.
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Two Kirkhof College of Nursing students received national grants to continue their studies in the Doctor of Nursing Practice program.

Rachel Cardosa and Leda Evans received scholarship money from a $20,000 grant from the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare, based in New York. The money was matched by KCON to support a national effort by the Jonas Center to prepare future nurses and future nursing faculty members.

Cynthia McCurren, dean of KCON, said receiving the Jonas Center grant matches the college’s mission of striving to improve the well-being of people, including veterans, through leadership in nursing education, professional practice and scholarship.

Evans said she was grateful for the scholarship and for the opportunity to advance her leadership skills. She earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Grand Valley in 2006.

She has worked with HIV patients from vulnerable populations. Evans said although the VA Health Care system leads the country in routine HIV screening and treatment, nearly 80 percent of veterans treated through the system have never been tested. She hopes to establish routine HIV testing in a primary care center.

Cardosa earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Ferris State University and a master’s degree in nursing from Wayne State University.

She has worked with older adults in a variety of health care settings. The scholarship will allow her to focus research efforts on transitional care, or coordination of moving from one health care setting to another, and help improve the safety of quality of care for older adults.