More students with financial needs will be able to pursue advanced nursing degrees – including master's and doctorate degrees -- thanks to a $2 million gift to the University of Maryland School of Nursing from Bill and Joanne Conway.
In 2015, the couple also gave the school $5.24 million, the largest donation in the institution's history, for 150 scholarships for bachelors of science degrees.
The new funds will also be used to increase the number of students in the family nurse practitioner program at Maryland's Shady Grove campus. The program is now only offered in Baltimore and can't accommodate the demand. Expanding enrollment will increase the number of primary care providers in the region, officials said.
The Maryland officials also said that some of those competing advanced degrees can then serve as instructors in the nursing program. There is a shortage of qualified faculty, as well as primary care providers.
The Conways are trustees of the couple's Bedford Falls Foundation Conway, and Bill Conway is co-chief executive officer and co-founder of the Carlyle Group a private equity firm in Washington, D.C.
Bill Conway said the initial gift was successful in supporting the bachelor's program that his foundation wanted to continue providing financial assistance.