American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Scholarships

American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Scholarships: Providing Opportunities for International Students

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is a national organization dedicated to advancing nursing education, research, and practice.

Representing over 840 member schools of nursing, the AACN serves as a unified voice for nursing education in the United States.

Its mission is to establish quality standards for nursing education, assist schools in implementing those standards, and foster the professional development of nurses and nurse educators.

Types of AACN Scholarships

The AACN provides a variety of scholarships to support international students pursuing nursing degrees at member institutions:

  1. Undergraduate Scholarships: These scholarships are available to international students enrolled in accredited Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) programs.
  1. Graduate Scholarships: For students pursuing advanced degrees in nursing, such as Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs.
  1. Specialty Scholarships: The AACN offers scholarships in areas such as research, leadership, and public health to support students with specific career goals or interests.

Eligibility Criteria

General eligibility requirements for AACN scholarships include:

  • International student status
  • Enrollment in an accredited nursing program at an AACN member institution
  • Demonstrated financial need
  • Strong academic record

Additional requirements may apply to specific scholarships, such as a focus on research or leadership experience.

Application Process

To apply for AACN scholarships, students should follow these steps:

  1. Review the scholarship descriptions and eligibility requirements on the AACN website.
  2. Complete the online application form during the application period, typically between January and April.
  3. Submit the required documents, including transcripts, personal statements, letters of recommendation, and proof of enrollment.
  4. Monitor email and the AACN website for updates on the status of the application.

Selection Process

The AACN scholarship selection committee considers factors such as academic achievement, extracurricular involvement, financial need, and the potential for success in the nursing profession when choosing recipients.

Award Disbursement

Scholarship funds are disbursed directly to the recipient’s educational institution and applied to tuition and fees.

To maintain eligibility and renew the scholarship, recipients must continue to meet the scholarship criteria, including maintaining satisfactory academic progress and full-time enrollment in an accredited nursing program.

How to apply for American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Scholarships

Visit the official website to apply.

Incase you missed: Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) Nursing Scholarships: Supporting the Next Generation of Nursing Professionals. is still on!

Challenges Faced by International Students

International students pursuing higher education in a foreign country often face several challenges that can affect their academic success and overall experience. Some of the most common challenges include:

  1. Language Barriers: Many international students come from non-English-speaking countries and may struggle with language proficiency, which can make it difficult to understand lectures, participate in class discussions, and complete assignments.
  1. Cultural Adjustments: Adapting to a new culture can be challenging, as international students must navigate differences in social norms, customs, and values. They may experience culture shock, homesickness, or feelings of isolation.
  1. Financial Constraints: The cost of tuition, fees, housing, and other living expenses can be a significant burden for international students, particularly those without access to domestic financial aid or scholarships.
  1. Visa and Immigration Issues: International students must comply with strict visa regulations, which may limit their ability to work, travel, or access certain benefits and resources.
  1. Academic Expectations: Students may find that academic expectations and teaching styles differ from those in their home country, requiring them to adapt their study habits and adjust to a new educational system.
  1. Networking and Career Opportunities: Building professional connections and accessing career resources can be challenging for international students, particularly those with limited local networks and language barriers.

The Role of Scholarships in Promoting Diversity and Access to Education

Scholarships play a vital role in helping international students overcome many of the challenges they face, particularly financial constraints.

By providing financial assistance, scholarships enable students to focus on their education and achieve their academic goals. Moreover, scholarships can:

  1. Encourage Diversity: Scholarships for international students help create a more diverse and inclusive educational environment by supporting students from different backgrounds, cultures, and perspectives.
  1. Foster Cross-Cultural Understanding: When students from various countries and cultures come together, they have the opportunity to learn from one another and develop a broader understanding of global issues.
  1. Enhance Educational Quality: A diverse student body promotes a dynamic learning environment, enriching classroom discussions, and encouraging innovative thinking.
  1. Support Talent Development: Scholarships allow talented students who may not have the financial means to pursue their education, providing them with the opportunity to develop their skills and contribute to their chosen fields.
  1. Strengthen International Collaboration: By supporting international students, scholarships help build connections between educational institutions and countries, fostering collaboration and exchange in research, teaching, and innovation.

Scholarships play a crucial role in promoting diversity and access to education for international students.

By addressing financial challenges and encouraging a diverse student body, scholarships help create more inclusive and dynamic learning environments that benefit all students.

Importance of Scholarships for International Students

International students face various challenges when pursuing higher education in the United States, including language barriers, cultural adjustments, and financial constraints.

Scholarships play a crucial role in promoting diversity and access to education by helping students overcome financial challenges.

By offering scholarships, the AACN enables international students to pursue their nursing education and contribute to the global healthcare community.

AACN Member Institutions

AACN member institutions include accredited public and private universities and colleges that offer undergraduate and graduate nursing programs.

These schools must meet specific criteria, such as offering accredited nursing degree programs and promoting the highest standards in nursing education.

International students enrolled in AACN member institutions benefit from access to cutting-edge resources, networking opportunities, and a supportive educational environment.

Criteria for Membership

To become a member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), institutions must meet specific criteria that ensure they maintain the highest standards in nursing education. These criteria include:

  1. Accreditation: The institution’s nursing program must be accredited by a recognized nursing accreditation agency, such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).
  1. Degree Offerings: The institution must offer undergraduate and/or graduate nursing degree programs, such as Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), or Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP).
  1. Commitment to Excellence: Member institutions must demonstrate a commitment to advancing nursing education, research, and practice in line with the AACN’s mission and values.
  1. Ongoing Evaluation and Improvement: Schools must participate in regular program evaluations and continuous improvement efforts to maintain the quality and relevance of their nursing programs.

Notable Member Institutions

The AACN represents more than 840 member institutions across the United States, including some of the most prestigious and renowned nursing schools. Some notable member institutions are:

  1. Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing
  2. University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
  3. Duke University School of Nursing
  4. University of Michigan School of Nursing
  5. Emory University Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing
  6. Yale School of Nursing
  7. University of California, San Francisco School of Nursing
  8. University of Washington School of Nursing
  9. University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing

Benefits for International Students Attending Member Schools

International students enrolled in AACN member institutions can expect numerous benefits that enhance their educational experience and support their career growth:

  1. High-Quality Education: AACN member institutions are recognized for their excellence in nursing education, providing students with access to cutting-edge resources, research opportunities, and a comprehensive curriculum.
  1. Networking Opportunities: Attending an AACN member institution allows students to connect with fellow nursing students, faculty, and alumni, fostering a supportive community and enhancing their professional network.
  1. Access to Scholarships: As mentioned earlier, international students enrolled in AACN member schools may be eligible for various AACN scholarships that help alleviate financial burdens and support their education.
  1. Career Resources: Member institutions often provide access to career services, such as job placement assistance, resume building, and interview preparation, helping students transition into the nursing workforce.
  1. Collaborative Learning Environment: The diverse student body at AACN member institutions promotes an inclusive and dynamic learning environment, enriching classroom discussions and fostering cross-cultural understanding.

By attending an AACN member institution, international students gain access to high-quality nursing education and resources that support their academic and professional success.

Profiles of Past Scholarship Recipients

Many international students have benefited from AACN scholarships, successfully completing their nursing degrees and making a difference in healthcare settings around the world.

These inspiring stories showcase the impact that scholarships can have on students’ lives, opening doors to new opportunities and helping them achieve their dreams.

Additional Resources

International students seeking financial assistance for their nursing education can explore various resources, such as:

  • Other scholarship opportunities available through their educational institution or external organizations
  • Federal or private student loans, if eligible
  • Part-time work or paid internships during the school year

The AACN website offers valuable information about its scholarships and application process, as well as resources for finding and applying for additional financial aid opportunities.

By contacting the AACN and utilizing their support services, international students can gain the necessary guidance to navigate the scholarship application process successfully.


The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) plays a crucial role in supporting international students pursuing nursing degrees at its member institutions.

By offering various scholarships, the AACN helps alleviate financial burdens and fosters a diverse and inclusive educational environment. 

International students can take advantage of these opportunities by researching eligibility requirements, preparing strong applications, and utilizing the resources provided by the AACN and their respective institutions.

With the right support and determination, students can turn their dreams of a nursing career into reality and contribute to the global healthcare community.

Other Scholarship Program That Might Interest You:

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Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) Nursing Scholarships

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