Nursing students gain valuable exposure to the psychiatric-mental health nursing profession and kick start their leadership development through this unique scholarship program. These scholarships include:

  • Registration to attend the virtual APNA 34th Annual Conference, September 30-October 4.
  • One year complimentary membership in the APNA.

Congratulations to the 2020 APNA Student Scholars! Thank you to all those who applied.


Eligibility and Selection Criteria

If applying as a GRADUATE Student:
At the time of nomination, be a full-time or part-time graduate student enrolled in an accredited nursing program leading to a Master’s or Doctoral degree in nursing with an emphasis on psychiatric-mental health nursing. Options available for "Type of Graduate Program" in the application: Master's in PMHN, Non-PMHN Master's Program, Post Master's PMHN Certificate Program, Doctoral Program, Other

Be a full-time student enrolled in a state-approved nursing program leading to licensure as a Registered Nurse (Associate Degree, Diploma, Baccalaureate, Accelerated/2nd degree) at the time of nomination. Students who will graduate in Spring 2020 are also eligible. Prelicensure/Undergraduate students need to express an interest in psychiatric-mental health nursing.



For BOTH Graduate and Prelicensure/Undergraduate Applicants:

  • Have not previously received an APNA Student Scholarship.
  • Have completed more than 50% of the total credits required for graduation.
  • Have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
  • Have a letter of nomination/recommendation from an APNA member (Program Director / Nominating Faculty / Nurse Professional) which speaks to the nominee/applicant's interest and/or performance in psychiatric-mental health nursing.
  • Must meet all travel requirements and participate in the APNA 34th Annual Conference, September 30-October 3 in Lake Buena Vista, FL
  • Sign the necessary release forms.
  • Provide post-conference evaluation of the program.
  • Participate in an APNA project (details will be provided to scholarship recipients).

There is no limit on the number of students who can apply from your school. However, APNA reserves the right to limit the number of scholars selected per institution.

"I will never forget standing with the other BOD scholars and hearing a room full of 2,000 psychiatric nurses cheer for us. Tears welled up in my eyes as I thought to myself, 'It is never too late to find a career that you love. To find a job that ignites your soul, and is your deepest calling.'”


Application Walkthrough

Click here to view a walkthrough of what is entailed in submitting your application.

A picture of a smiling APNA Board of Directors Student Scholar.

Industry-Sponsored Scholarship

New this year! While applying for the APNA Board of Directors Student Scholarship, students may also opt in for consideration for an industry-sponsored scholarship. The industry-sponsored scholarship will also cover registration for the virtual APNA 34th Annual Conference and a year of membership in APNA.

Through the new APNA Industry Partner Program, companies have the opportunity to partner with APNA by providing a year-long sponsorship. Top tier sponsorships include this scholarship.

Please note: Opting in for consideration for this scholarship will not impact eligibility for the APNA Board of Directors Student Scholarship. Applicants are responsible for determining if your employment, school, financial aid, etc, will allow you to accept industry-sponsored funds.

Why Apply?

We polled past scholarship recipients about the benefits of receiving this scholarship. Here are a few key pieces of data:


Said their experience influenced their decision in choosing a field of study or affirming the field of study they had already selected.

"For me the best part about being a BOD scholar has been the support and reassurance I receive, the opportunity to connect with people across the nation with the click of a button, and the opportunity to engage in the nursing profession."


Developed connections with other PMH nurses through this scholarship, and 66% said these connections helped them in their careers.

"I utilized the great opportunity to seek and obtain my future mentors during the conference. Most of them have had a tremendous amount of clinical, research, advocacy, and leadership experiences in the field."


Of scholarship recipients went on to obtain a specialty certification and 46% went on to graduate school for psychiatric nursing.

"I was introduced to the expansive and close-knit network of advanced practice nurses, many of whom appear to be embracing nursing roles as leaders, researchers, educators, healers and advocates with such passion and abandon."


2020 Class of APNA Student Scholars

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The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is accredited with distinction as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.