Students Receive Scholarship Funds While Completing Internships

Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Fairmont State graduate students pursuing Master of Science in Healthcare Management degrees, Dominique Fusco-Davis and Trevor Harman, are the first to receive financial awards from the Rosita Alvarez Schneider Scholarship. The scholarship fund was established in the fall of 2020 to support graduate student endeavors in the Fairmont State Master of Science in Healthcare Management program.

Fusco-Davis and Harman were each awarded $500 in scholarship funding for tuition and fees for the spring semester as they entered the 500-hour administrator in training experiential learning component of the master's degree program. 

“Experiential learning is a hallmark of a Fairmont State education,” said Mirta M. Martin, Fairmont State University President. “We are thrilled to offer this unique, hands-on opportunity to students enrolled in the Healthcare Management master’s program. This initiative eases their financial burden while giving them real world experience that will enhance their job prospects after graduation. There’s a healthcare crisis in this country, and our programs, and opportunities like this, help us produce the next generation of skilled, caring healthcare leaders.”

Both students are completing placements in licensed skilled/intermediate care facilities in Fairmont and Romney. Upon completion of their internships, Fusco-Davis and Harman are eligible to submit applications to the WV Nursing Home Administrator's Licensing Board for approval to take the licensure exam.

"We are the only graduate program in the country to establish this collaborative relationship for licensure,” said Dr. Raymond Alvarez, Healthcare Management Program Coordinator. “The Licensing Board approved the Fairmont State program and as such waived 500 hours due to our curriculum of the standard 1000 hours required, in addition to research in designing the practicum.”

Alvarez utilized research from a fall 2019 survey of licensed nursing home administrators throughout the state to determine the priority of the 500 hours. 

"This internship is a unique step, not only for our program, but for the Licensing Board as well," Alvarez explained. “Their participation was invaluable as we designed a program that would meet the requirements for the Board and provide a unique internship that adds depth to professional development through licensure." 

The Licensing Board endorsed the program based on the need for qualified administrators to fill leadership openings throughout West Virginia facilities, allowing Fairmont State to approve such learning to expedite the process.

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