Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Careers in Nursing (RWJFNCIN)

2013-2014 Scholars

          Ben Boerner                         

Benjamin Boerner - Lexington, Ohio

Ben has always been around doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals.  From a very young age, he watched these healthcare professionals care for his sister, who is living with cystic fibrosis.  In 2011, Ben experienced a life changing experience himself when he suffered a stroke.  He spent a week in the hospital surrounded by a team of dedicated nurses who made a lasting impression on his life.  Ben has always wanted to help others and his life experiences have inspired him to pursue a career in nursing.  Ben is thankful for the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation scholarship and looks forward to this new chapter in his life as completes his nursing degree at Ashland University.


James Lower

James Lower - Mount Vernon, Ohio

James is a recent graduate of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.  His work experience as a personal trainer has enabled him to work with diverse groups of individuals from all walks of life.  James has always had a desire to help and serve others.  As a nurse, he looks forward to going the extra mile for his patients and having an impact on their lives.  A career in nursing will be challenging and rewarding as well as offer a variety of job opportunities.  James is dedicated to lifelong learning and strives to become an outstanding healthcare professional.

Chikaodi Odi

Chikaodi Oti – Columbus, Ohio

As a child, Chikaodi watched nurses care for her grandmother following a stroke.  This experience ultimately inspired Chika, as called by her friends, to pursue a career in nursing.  Chika has worked at a rehab/nursing care center for many years.  She is committed to providing patients with that same tender loving care that she saw given to her grandmother.  Chika is excited to be part of the Ashland University Accelerated Nursing program.  The Robert Woods Johnson Foundation scholarship has given her the opportunity to advance her career and achieve her goals.  A bachelor’s degree in nursing will open the doors to a variety of opportunities and enable Chika to better provide for her family.

Julie Park

Julie Park - Northbrook, Illinois

Julie received a Bachelor of Arts from Loyola University in Chicago, Illinois.  After college, she spent several years traveling as she worked in the field of marketing and product development.  Julie has always had an interest in nursing.  This comes naturally as Julie’s mother was a nurse for 35 years.  Julie enjoys helping others and looks forward to the challenges and opportunities a career in nursing offers.  Julie’s future goals include becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, or CRNA.  This scholarship has enabled Julie to attend Ashland University as a full-time student in the Accelerated Nursing program. 

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation New Careers in Nursing Scholarship Program

The Dwight Schar College of Nursing & Health Sciences has been selected as a grant recipient of the prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) New Careers in Nursing Scholarship Program (NCIN).

The NCIN is a program of RWJF and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).  Each NCIN Scholar has already earned a bachelor’s degree in another field, and is making a career switch to nursing through an accelerated nursing degree program.  An accelerated nursing program prepares students to pass the licensure exam required for all registered nurses in as little as 12-18 months.

In addition to a $10,000 scholarship,  NCIN scholars receive other support to help them meet the demands of an accelerated degree program.  All NCIN grantee schools maintain a leadership program and a mentoring program for their scholars, as well as a pre-entry immersion program to help scholars learn study, test-taking, and other skills that will help them manage the challenges of an accelerated program.

RWJNCIN Ashland Profile