Posted on Mar 9, 2020

Cole Scholars Awarded $10K Each Toward Doctoral Degree

Cole Scholars Awarded $10K Each Toward Doctoral Degree

Three USF College of Nursing doctoral students have been named Cole Scholars, and each will receive $10,000 toward completing their Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree.

Megan Kahle, Kailah Costello, and Catherine Hernandez were recently awarded the Hazel and Herschel Cole Scholarship, a one-time grant aimed at helping future advanced practice nurses.

Set up in 2014, the scholarship endowment hands out a $10,000 scholarship to three DNP students each year. Since it began, 18 nursing students have received the award.

All three are scheduled to graduate in August and said the unexpected award ensures they will have the funds to finish their doctoral degrees.

“I’m extremely grateful and blessed that I was chosen for it,” said Hernandez, who is in the DNP program’s pediatric health concentration. “It was a huge surprise. It’s definitely a huge gift. I’ve got another semester after this one, and this is going to be a tremendous help.”

Costello and Kahle, who are partnering together on their DNP project, said they were grateful to receive such a generous award.

“Initially we were just very shocked,” said Costello. “Truly there were times when we didn’t know if we were going to finish,” because of funding issues.

Barbara Ann Cole started the scholarship endowment to honor her parents, Herschel and Hazel Cole. When Dr. Herschel Cole moved to Tampa in 1939, he became the only orthopedic specialist in the city for many years. Hazel Cole was a school teacher.

Barbara Ann Cole was her parents’ caregiver. When they passed away, she created a scholarship that blends education and health care, and addresses the nationwide shortage of nurses, as a way to commemorate their legacy.

Story by Elizabeth L. Brown, USF College of Nursing