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 and travel/lodging* to attend the APNA 35th Annual Conference this October.
  • One year complimentary membership in APNA.
  • Access to mentoring and networking opportunities to connect with psychiatric-mental health nurses around the country.

The APNA Board of Directors Student Scholarship is no longer accepting applications. Thank you to those who applied!

Notifications will be sent in mid-June.



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 2021 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 35th Annual Conference.
  • 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.

"This was a wonderful and exciting opportunity. It was a pleasure to represent APNA BOD scholars and expand networking opportunities. I am very fortunate and thankful for this opportunity and scholarship. I look forward to being a positive contributor to this organization and the nursing profession."


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.
*APNA is committed to delivering education to conference attendees in a safe environment, whether in-person and/or virtually. Travel and lodging expenses will be included if an in-person conference is held.

Industry-Sponsored Scholarship

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 APNA 35th 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

AMERICAN PSYCHIATRIC NURSES ASSOCIATION and APNA-Logoare registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as trademarks of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association.
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.