FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
You must be enrolled at least half-time in an accredited West Virginia nursing program, be a resident of West Virginia, and be in good academic standing. You must also meet the cumulative and nursing GPA requirements set by the Recruitment and Retention Committee.
There are also eligibility requirements specific to what kind of scholarship you are applying for:
- LPNs and RNs - You must complete at least 50% of their nursing curriculum before receiving an award.
- Graduate nursing students - You must be working as a nursing educator at a West Virginia school of nursing while enrolled in your graduate nursing program.
LPN and RN students are eligible to receive awards when they have met the half-way point in their nursing programs. Your half-way point is met when you have completed 50% of your nursing program. The West Virginia Center for Nursing Scholarship Program has ONE application cycle per academic year. If you will be reaching your midpoint during any point during the academic year (Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters), you should apply. If you are unsure of when you will meet your half-way point, contact your nursing program or school register to ask.
Masters or doctoral nursing education students and LPN teaching certificate students are eligible at any time in their education to receive awards.
G.P.A requirements are set annually by the Recruitment and Retention Committee of the West Virginia Center for Nursing and can vary from year to year. During the 2020-2021 award cycle, students were required to have a 3.25 G.P.A. for both in their cumulative and nursing program.
Award amounts vary each year based on the availability of funds and may be less than the maximum amount. Awards are dispersed each semester (Fall, Spring, Summer). The award amounts listed below are the maximum total annual award amounts:
- LPN students: up to $3,000 per year
- RN students: up to $7,500 per year
- Master’s or doctoral nursing education students: up to $15,000 per year
- LPN teaching certificate students: up to $1,000 per year
During the 2020-2021 academic year, award amounts were as follows:
- LPN students - $800 per academic year
- RN (ASN) students - $1,000 per eligible semester
- RN (BSN) students - $1,250 per eligible semester
- Masters students - $3,000 per eligible semester
- Doctoral students - $4,000 per eligible semester
You must complete a service obligation. The service obligation requires that you work full-time in WV as a nurse for a certain period. LPN participants must work as an LPN in West Virginia for one year for each year they received an award. RN participants must work as an RN in West Virginia for two years for each year they received an award. Masters or doctoral participants must work as a nurse educator in West Virginia for two years for every year they received an award. LPN teaching certificate participants must work as an LPN educator for one year for every year they receive the award. All service obligations can meet the full-time requirement through more than one form of employment if the equivalent is full-time state of 36 or more hours per week.
Not necessarily. Each year, the GPA (cumulative and nursing) may change as well as award disbursements. If you do want another scholarship, please be sure to apply during the open application cycle. Just because you received an award one year does not mean you are automatically applied for the next. You must apply during the open application cycle to be considered each award year.
LPN and RN students who reach their midpoint in the Fall semester will be notified in July if they received an award. Those reaching their midpoint in the Spring semester will be notified in January. Those reaching their midpoint in the Summer semester will be notified in May. Masters and doctoral nursing and LPN teaching certificate students will be notified in July if they received an award. Many LPN students meet their midpoints mid-semester and will be notified mid-semester of their award.
Once a student has reached their midpoint during the academic year, awards will be disbursed each semester during the award year until they graduate unless otherwise instructed. Students who do not graduate during the academic year they first applied within MUST apply during the next award cycle to be eligible to continue to receive awards throughout the remainder of their programs.
Please check your spam folder. The promissory note is sent in a separate email from your award eligibility notification and is sent to you by Heartland ECSI. You have seven days from the receipt of this email to sign the promissory note, so if you cannot find the email, contact the Center immediately at 304.558.0838 to have us resend the email. If you do not contact us within the seven days, you may no longer receive the award.
The promissory note contains required federal financial aid information. The loan information provided only applies if you fail to complete and verify your service obligation with the West Virginia Center for Nursing. If you do not complete and verify your obligation, the scholarship converts into a loan that you must repay through Heartland ECSI.
The West Virginia Center for Nursing and the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission disburse awards to individual schools. From there, your school’s financial aid department will apply the scholarship to your account. If you have signed your promissory note, the funds will be sent to your school near the beginning of each semester and then be added to your financial aid account. If you have questions about why your award has not yet been applied to your account, we advise that you first contact your financial aid department.
You will be notified sometime in January if you received the scholarship after you school has finalized your grades and they have been updated in the financial aid management system. Some LPN students don't meet their nursing midpoint until mid semester and will be notified after they have met the requirement.
Most students who only receive one award disbursement because they only applied for a single semester. On your application, you were asked what terms you wanted to apply for and were told that you would only receive funds for terms you applied for. We are unable to alter terms you applied for after the application cycle closes.
The West Virginia Nursing Scholarship considers both nursing and cumulative GPA. Your nursing GPA only considers classes you took that are required for your nursing program. If you received an email that your GPA did not meet the requirement, either both or one of your GPAs didn’t meet the requirement. If you believe your school sent the wrong GPA to us, you need to contact your school’s Financial Aid office and request they update your records accordingly.
The West Virginia Nursing Scholarship midpoint date calculation does not include pre-requisite classes needed to get into your nursing program and only considers classes required for the program of study. If you believe the date provided by your school is incorrect, you need to contact your school’s Financial Aid office and request they update your records accordingly.
Service Obligation and Repayment Questions
After graduating, you enter a 6 month grace period. Within that period of time, we expect that you will pass your NCLEX exam, obtain licensure, and gain employment as required by the terms of the promissory note you signed. If you experience a delay in this process, please contact the Center about obtaining a temporary deferment.
Once you gain employment, you are required to verify your employment with the West Virginia Center for Nursing using employment verification forms. Each employment verification form that you turn in defers repayment for one year until the last form needed is turned in and the Center can cancel out the amount of the scholarship from your account at Heartland ECSI. Your service obligation starts at the anniversary date of your first employment date. You should submit a new employment verification form each year in the anniversary month of the date of your first employment (example - you started work June 17th, 2019; you should submit your next employment verification form sometime in June 2020).
The most common reason why students get a bill from Heartland ECSI is because they have failed to turn in an employment verification form when they were suppose to. If you are completing your service obligation, you need to turn in a new employment verification form as soon as possible so that your account can be pulled out of repayment.
If you change jobs while completing your service obligation, you will need to submit two new employment verification forms to the Center: one from your old employer showing your employment end date and one from your new employer showing your start date. Any lapse in employment greater than two weeks will result in additional time added to the length of the service obligation. As long as additional time added isn't needed, you should continue to submit employment verification forms the anniversary month of the date of your first employment. If additional time is added to the length of your service obligation due to a lapse in employment, please speak with the Center to better understand the revised schedule you need to submit employment verification forms on.
The West Virginia Center for Nursing grants deferments from service obligations for enrollment of at least half-time attendance as a regular student in a course of study for at least half-time at an accredited institution of higher education. Please notify the Center at email@example.com if you are planning on now working while in your new program.
If you plan to continue to work while in your program, your service obligation can still continue to be met as long as you continue to submit employment verification forms each year.
If you decide to not fulfill your service obligation, you will need to repay the scholarship back through Heartland ECSI (https://heartland.ecsi.net/). The terms of repayment were outlined in the promissory note you signed and you many chose to pay it off all at once or gradually overtime. If you choose not to make payments, your account will be turned over to a collections agency.