School recognizes scholarship recipients and donors

By Pareasa Rahimi

The University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing gathered in February for the 2024 Jean Riley Tomlinson Scholarship Luncheon, an annual event that brings together scholarship donors and recipients. In the 2023-2024 academic year, the School distributed $779,000 in scholarships to 312 students.

Luncheon attendees heard messages from Dean and Fay B. Ireland Endowed Chair in Nursing Maria R. Shirey, PhD, MBA, MS, RN, NEA-BC, ANEF, FACHE, FNAP, FAAN, and three scholarship recipients, Carol Hutchinson, Robert Schellman and Jayla McAdory, who shared their gratitude and experiences with the donors who each said have made an impact on their academic journeys.

Hutchinson is a fourth semester Bachelor of Science in Nursing student and the recipient of the Board of Visitors Endowed Nursing Scholarship, Jernigan Endowed Nursing Scholarship and Martha F. Tilt Endowed Nursing Scholarship. Hutchinson thanked the donors who made her path to nursing school possible and said she hoped to return to the School in the future for the Doctor of Nursing Practice Program.

“None of these dreams would be possible if it weren’t for the overwhelming generosity of you, the donors. So, from the very bottom of my heart, I thank you. Your generosity has truly changed my life,” Hutchinson said. “I am able to be as successful as I am in nursing school because of these scholarships.”

Schellman is a Nurse Anesthesia Pathway student and the recipient of the Jean Riley Tomlinson Endowed Nursing Scholarship and Larry G. and Carol C. Hornsby Family Endowed Scholarship in Nurse Anesthesia. At 17 years old, he joined the military as a ROTC cadet while pursuing his education and currently serves as a United States Army Captain. He was previously a nurse clinician at Emory Saint Joseph’s Hospital. Schellman graduates this spring and has accepted a Nurse Anesthetist position at UAB Hospital.

“By investing in my education, you, the donors, have not only lightened my financial load but have also bestowed upon me the gift of opportunity—the opportunity to delve deeper into my chosen field, to engage in patient care and to make a lasting impact in our community,” Schellman said.

McAdory is a 2023 graduate of the Accelerated Master’s in Nursing Pathway and recipient of several scholarships, including the Helene Fuld Health Trust Endowed Scholarship. She works at Princeton Baptist Medical Center as a Cardiac Intensive Care Unit nurse. One of nine children, McAdory is the first in her family to attend and graduate college—three times. As a second-career nurse, her goal is to continue to help patients and become a professor of nursing.

“I aspire to provide students with guidance, support and opportunities to overcome their obstacles just as I have throughout my educational pursuits,” McAdory said. “Applying for and earning scholarships reminded me that it’s never too late to find your spark and it also gave me the drive I needed to mentally, physically and financially to complete my rigorous program.”

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