UND program receives major grant to support educational endeavors of American Indians in nursing

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News Article

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College of Nursing & Professional Disciplines


RAIN program mentors located throughout the state of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota Recruitment-Retention of American Indians into Nursing (RAIN) program at the UND College of Nursing & Professional Disciplines was recently awarded $555,152 in funding. This money will go toward supporting tribal members in their educational endeavors and will assist in a collaboration with the Three Affiliated Tribes (Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara) to address educational and employment needs.

“This grant is particularly special as it is a new endeavor for RAIN with the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation,” said Gayle Roux, dean of the College of Nursing and Professional Disciplines. “RAIN has focused on establishing new funding sources, and it is rewarding to see this award as a result of that work. “

The RAIN program, directed by Deb Wilson, assists American Indian students from pre-nursing through the doctoral level by providing guidance, personal and financial counseling and a “home away from home” for students.

The program began in 1990 and will celebrate its 25th anniversary this year. Since the program started, it has graduated 180 American Indian nurses with their bachelor degrees, 52 American Indian nurses with their master’s degrees and five have earned their Ph.D.s in nursing. The first American Indian Doctor of Nursing Practice student graduated this past summer.

The New Town, N.D., mentor is Elizabeth “Lizz” YellowBird, Ph.D.; Bismarck mentor is Tracey Baker, MBA; United Tribes Technical College mentor is Evelyn “Faye” Foote, MS; and the UND Mentor position is currently being advertised. The mentors will work with students across North Dakota with plans to expand services across the nation.