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HONOLULU – University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Nursing has received two grants totaling $729,000 to support students in the Master’s Entry Program in Nursing (MEPN). Launched in 2008, the MEPN Program is an accelerated entry program leading to a Master’s of Science in Nursing, the only program of its kind in Hawai‘i. It is designed for students who have a baccalaureate or higher degree in a field other than nursing and who have not previously attended a registered nurse educational program. The purpose of this alternative entry program is to equip students with entry-level professional nurse competencies as a foundation for advanced practice roles. The program consists of an intensive pre-licensure year transitioning into one of several specialty nursing pathways.

MEPN Fall 2014 Incoming Class
MEPN Fall 2014 Incoming Class

Recent Donors to MEPN

  • New York based Helene Fuld Health Trust awarded $650,000 to support multi-year scholarships to full-time MEPN students. $325,000 will be endowed, ensuring ongoing support for students for years to come.
  • The HMSA Foundation awarded $79,000 to support MEPN clinical placements over the next three years. The HMSA Foundation grant provided the subsequent funding needed to secure the award from the Helene Fuld Health Trust.

“Nurse Practitioners (also known as Advanced Practice Registered Nurses) are in high demand in Hawaiʻi. By providing care in health centers, retail clinics, hospitals, and long-term care settings, they ensure that all people have convenient access to high quality health care," said UH Mānoa School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene Dean Mary G. Boland.  “Major awards like these recognize the outstanding education provided at UH Mānoa Nursing and greatly advance our efforts on all the Islands. We are most grateful to both the Helene Fuld Health Trust and the HMSA Foundation for their very generous support.”
An essential component of nursing students’ educational preparation is clinical practicums. Practicum experiences provide students with opportunities for hands-on, direct patient care under the supervision of qualified clinicians. UH Mānoa Nursing’s clinical enhancement program partners with health care providers to provide supervised clinical experiences to prepare future health care providers with real-world experiences. Several clinical practicum sites serve rural and underserved populations and support public health initiatives.

“The demand for qualified health care providers continues to grow in Hawai‘i,” says HMSA Foundation Interim Executive Administrator Jason Paloma. “The HMSA Foundation is proud to partner with the University of Hawai‘i School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene and the Helene Fuld Health Trust to give nursing professionals access to clinical experiences. This innovative program will help build a stronger nursing workforce and improve the quality of health care for the people of Hawai‘i.”   

Did You Know?

  • In 2014, the Hawai‘i State legislature passed and Governor Abercrombie signed into law, bills that remove barriers to APRN practice, moving Hawai‘i into the national spotlight as a state favorable to the full scope of nursing practice.
  • Hawai‘i can expect a dramatic demographic shift in its aging population over the next decade, which will occur at a pace twice that of the rest of the country. Between 2000 and 2020, the number of people aged 60 and over living in Hawai‘i will increase by almost 75 percent.  The larger elderly population in Hawaiʻi is expected to further tax the health care delivery system and there will be a need for nurses to provide primary care, especially in rural areas of the State.  The MEPN graduates are well prepared and ready to meet this need, and UHM Nursing graduates work on all the islands of Hawai‘i.

In order to address the current and projected shortages of clinicians in the State, UH Mānoa Nursing has increased enrollment in the primary care nurse practitioner program.

To find out how you can support UH Mānoa Nursing, please contact Jennifer Burke at (808) 956-3659 or

Make a secure gift online.

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The University of Hawaiʻi Foundation, a nonprofit organization, raises private funds to support the University of Hawaiʻi System. The mission of the University of Hawaiʻi Foundation is to unite donors' passions with the University of Hawaiʻi’s aspirations by raising philanthropic support and managing private investments to benefit UH, the people of Hawaiʻi and our future generations