Fueling the Passion to Heal Pediatric Patients

UCF seniors named inaugural recipients of the new Alfred I. duPont Endowed Nursing Scholarship

Fueling the Passion to Heal Pediatric Patients

Scholarship recipients Rebecca Bruce (left) and Caitlin Cox, with duPont's John Lord.

Senior Rebecca Bruce of Deland knows that she can ease the pain of sick children and their families one bedside at a time. Her classmate, Caitlin Cox of Tavernier, dreams of lessening the struggles of pediatric patients. As the first recipients of the newly established Alfred I. duPont Endowed Nursing Scholarship, both students are much closer to achieving their goals in pediatric nursing.

With a nursing shortage of more than 1.2 million in the United States, Bruce and Cox are preparing for crucial roles in our health care system. And with the assistance of the Alfred I. duPont Testamentary Trust, they will do so without the crushing burden of student loans or the need to compromise their studies with part-time work.

“I believe in the alleviation of human suffering through the means of compassion and empathy that nursing has to offer,” Cox said. “Receiving this scholarship will reduce the current stress of juggling work so I can focus on my studies to provide the best care for my future patients.”

Bruce also recognizes the freedom provided by duPont’s generosity.

“Financing my dream of becoming a nurse is becoming harder and harder each semester, as I have to take out more and more loans. I want to someday help the pediatric population and their families through some of the hardest times of their lives, but I can’t do that if I don’t graduate this program due to financial stress,” Bruce explained.

Dean of the College of Nursing, Mary Lou Sole, recognizes the necessity of scholarships that empower students and allow them to focus on their studies. “Many nursing students are not able to work during the program due to the rigorous curriculum, so scholarship support is critical and helps us recruit the best and brightest students.“

The Alfred I. duPont Testamentary Trust is one of America’s most generous supporters of pediatric health care. Since 1935, they have distributed more than $2.7 billion to its primary beneficiary, The Nemours Foundation, for the care and treatment of children primarily in Delaware and Florida. It has helped hundreds of thousands of sick children find health and new hope for the future, regardless of ability to pay.

With 96 percent of UCF’s nursing graduates passing the licensing exam on the first attempt, UCF ranks among the top four percent of nursing programs nationwide. Generous support from donors at every level has helped make this success possible.

The gift from the Alfred I. duPont Testamentary Trust supports IGNITE: The Campaign for UCF, which seeks to inspire $500 million in philanthropic support from alumni, friends and partners to drive transformational change. The campaign has currently stands at $366 million and is set to run until June of 2019.