Wish they did this for all nursing programs in the city!
New nursing students at Tulsa Community College each received a $1,200 gift from Hillcrest Healthcare System this week.
Hillcrest presented each student with $500 in textbooks and reference books, another $700 in electronic books and references, and a rolling backpack to carry it all.
The gifts, handed out Tuesday and Wednesday, helped Hillcrest recruit students at a time when nurses are at a premium because of a nationwide shortage. Already, about a third of the new graduates that Hillcrest hires come from TCC, according to Hillcrest.
"It's always good to get your name out there," said Eric Burch, chief nursing officer of Tulsa Regional Medical Center, a part of Hillcrest Healthcare System.
More than that, Hillcrest wanted to make it easier for more students to become nurses, he said.
"We don't want anyone to drop out of the program because they couldn't afford books," he said.
Hillcrest gave materials to 106 students.
With the donation, students will only have to buy one or two books a semester, said Ann Anthony, associate dean of nursing.
Student Cherish Carden said she had not considered working at Hillcrest, but now she wants to get more information. The books and backpack let her know that Hillcrest cares about nursing students, she said.
Carly Bodley said the gift would leave her more money for food and rent this school year.
Other local hospitals and the Tulsa Hospitals Council also support TCC nursing students, Anthony said. St. Francis Health System is paying full scholarships
for 10 students this year, she said. St. John Health System licensed practical nurses are getting further training at TCC to become registered nurses.