Greenview donating $475,000

Joe Lord

Bowling Green’s regional hospital joined forces with Western last week to combat a common national enemy: a shortage of nurses.

Greenview Regional Hospital promised $475,000 to Western’s nursing program Friday morning. The donation, which will be split between scholarships, an endowed fund and unrestricted program money, is meant to ease a shortage of nurses throughout the state, region and nation.

“There is a tremendous need nationwide for nurses,” said David Dunn, dean of the College of Health and Human Services. “There are just not enough nurses being produced throughout the state and throughout the nation.”

Greenview is no exception.

“We have needs in several different areas, but specifically for just good quality nurses,” said Charles Fortney, vice president for business development at Greenview. “We’ve got a need for nurses just about system wide, and we’re not unique in that respect.”

As the population gets older, there will be a need for more medical care, Dunn said. Retirement and competition also hurt the field.

The donation will provide $120,000 for 10 scholarships to nursing students, Fortney said. Students will have to work at Greenview for the number of years they get the scholarship.

“That is a real nice feature to keep some of those nurses in the area for a while,” Dunn said.

Fortney agreed that those students are more likely to stick around.

One of Greenview’s goals is to attract nurses who come from Western, who they know are familiar with the hospital and Bowling Green, Fortney said.

“We think they’ll be happier, better employees from that standpoint,” he said.

Dunn said the remaining part of the donation will provide money for faculty professional development, such as seminars and professional consultants.

“Overall, I think it will help us in recruiting and retaining faculty,” Dunn said.

Tom Hiles, vice president for Institutional Advancement, said the money can also be used for materials. Along with Greenview’s donation, $100,000 will be matched by Kentucky’s Regional University Excellence Trust Fund.

Reach Joseph Lord at [email protected]