UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Penn State alumna Gail E. Latimer has committed $50,000 to establish the Gail E. Latimer Trustee Scholarship in the College of Nursing. Support from the University's Trustee Matching Scholarship Program will approximately triple her gift's impact for undergraduates in the Nursing program who have financial need.
"By giving first preference to nursing students with financial need, the Gail E. Latimer Trustee Scholarship is helping to remove a significant financial barrier for students who want to contribute to improving health in their communities and wherever nurses work," said Paula Milone-Nuzzo, dean of the College of Nursing. "We are extremely grateful to Ms. Latimer for this support. As Penn State's newest independent academic unit, we consider gifts of this magnitude to be critical to our ability to establish a secure ground floor on which to build and move forward."
Latimer, vice president and chief nursing officer for Siemens Healthcare, is a former hospital CEO and nurse executive with more than 30 years' experience in health care.
"One of my lifelong goals was to establish a scholarship for Penn State's baccalaureate nursing program to support students who, like me, will benefit from outstanding educational preparation that lays the foundation for a future open to opportunity," Latimer said.
"I have always looked back on my years at Penn State with great pride and joy. With the support of many mentors and an excellent faculty, I gained the clinical knowledge and experience that has served as the foundation for my career. The education I received gave me the background and confidence to be the best nurse possible — and the power to make a difference."
Latimer is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and the American Academy of Nursing, and a Johnson & Johnson Fellow from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She holds adjunct faculty appointments at Penn State and Loyola University. An accomplished author and speaker on health information technology and clinical practice, she has established a reputation as a respected thought leader.
Latimer received the Shirley Novosel Distinguished Nursing Alumni Award from the Penn State Nursing Alumni Society in 2005 and Penn State's Alumni Fellow Award in 2009. She has served on the College of Nursing's external advisory board since 2006. A life member of the Penn State Alumni Association, she lives in Oakmont, Pa.
The Trustee Matching Scholarship Program maximizes the impact of private giving while directing funds to students as quickly as possible, meeting the urgent need for scholarship support. For Trustee Scholarships created through the end of For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students on June 30, 2014, Penn State will provide an annual 10 percent match of the total pledge or gift. This level is an increase from the program’s original match of 5 percent, and it is available only for new endowments of $50,000 or more. The University match, which is approximately double the endowment’s annual spendable income, continues in perpetuity, multiplying the support available for students with financial need.
Latimer’s scholarship will help the College of Nursing reach its goals in the For the Future campaign. For the Future is directed toward a shared vision of Penn State as the most comprehensive, student-centered research university in America. The University is engaging Penn State’s alumni and friends as partners in achieving six key objectives: ensuring student access and opportunity, enhancing honors education, enriching the student experience, building faculty strength and capacity, fostering discovery and creativity, and sustaining the University’s tradition of quality. The campaign’s top priority is keeping a Penn State degree affordable for students and families. The For the Future campaign is the most ambitious effort of its kind in Penn State’s history, with the goal of securing $2 billion by 2014.