Press Release: Trocaire College Awarded $1.8 Million for Nursing Workforce Diversity Grant

Trocaire College has been awarded the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) Nursing Workforce Diversity Grant. The grant will fund an estimated $1.8 million over four years for the college and its community partners to recruit, support, retain and graduate diverse nursing professionals to power the local healthcare workforce.

Participating nursing students will be buoyed by financial, academic and social support, and respected grant partners Community Health Centers of Buffalo and Erie Niagara Area Health Education Center (ENAHEC) will each assist in providing mentoring and vocational training for students. Trocaire is the recipient of one of only 29 awards given nationwide, and the only recipient in New York State.

Funded by the grant, Trocaire’s “Pathways to Nursing Success” nursing workforce diversity program aims to increase nursing education opportunities for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, including ethnic and racial minorities who are underrepresented among registered nurses. The approach to the program is supported by three core objectives. They are to recruit, enroll, retain, and graduate a small cohort of “Pathways” scholars by the end of the project period; to enhance and expand the institution’s capacity to prepare a culturally sensitive and diverse nursing workforce; and to reduce financial pressures and student loan debt for Pathways scholars from financially disadvantaged and underrepresented backgrounds.

In return, students will commit to continuing their nursing education and pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Nursing. Key strategies that will be implemented include the Nursing Immersion program, case management, supplemental instruction, holistic review, scholarships and stipends, and mentoring opportunities.

“Creating a more culturally competent workforce is vital in transforming the healthcare system and ultimately improving overall health of the communities we serve,” said Danise C. Wilson, MPH, executive director of ENAHEC. “Trocaire is showing to be a leader in academia by training first the faculty and staff who are responsible for educating and preparing the future health professionals who will work with diverse populations. Establishing this foundation will strengthen the Trocaire Pathways program tremendously. Erie Niagara AHEC is a proud and fortunate partner.”

“The Community Health Center of Buffalo is excited to partner with Trocaire College in their commitment to increase educational opportunities for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. We at the CHCB have a long-standing commitment to furthering the professional growth of students in our community with a dedication to mentoring individuals to help them succeed. As a partner in this endeavor student nurses will spend time at our practices being mentored by nurses who have several years of experience in clinical practice, teaching and administration,” said Dr. Lavonne Ansari, director of the Community Health Center of Buffalo.

HRSA makes grants to organizations to improve and expand health care services for underserved people, focusing on the Health Workforce, HIV/AIDS, Maternal & Child Health, Office of the Administrator, Primary Health Care/Health Centers, Rural Health, Healthcare Systems and Organ Donation areas.

“This federal grant serves a dual purpose of advancing opportunities for a diverse array of students and meeting a need for additional well-trained and educated healthcare workers in high-demand fields,” said State Congressman Brian Higgins.

“We are continuing to build a city of opportunity for all people,” said Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown. “I am very pleased by today’s announcement that Trocaire College is being awarded the Health Resources & Services Administration Nursing Workforce Diversity Grant, which will fund the college’s “Pathways to Nursing Success” program. The diverse nursing professionals who will graduate from Trocaire will provide quality health care to our residents for years to come as our health care industry continues to grow in the City of Buffalo.”

“This grant will help our nursing program focus on both the academic and nonacademic issues associated with nursing student attrition,” said Catherine Griswold, Ed.D, MSN, RN, CLNC, CNE, dean of Trocaire’s Catherine McAuley School of Nursing. “More specifically, the grant will provide resources needed to implement a pathway to academic success for our students. The nursing program will be devoting resources to innovative and holistic nursing education models which support improved student outcomes. We feel that improving program outcomes and graduating more clinically competent nurses is a service to both our students and the Western New York community.”

About Trocaire College
Founded in 1958 in the City of Buffalo,  NY by the Sisters of Mercy, Trocaire College is a private, career-oriented Catholic college that strives to empower students toward personal enrichment, dignity and self-worth through education. A career-oriented institution, Trocaire offers three bachelor’s degrees, 12 associate degrees and eight certificate programs in healthcare, business, hospitality and technology. Recognizing the individual needs of a diverse student body, Trocaire College provides life learning and development within a community-based environment, preparing students for service in the universal community. Visit for more information and follow Trocaire on Facebook and Twitter.

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant D19HP30857, Nursing Workforce Diversity, for a total award of $1.873 million. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.

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