Tallahassee, FL – The Florida Department of Education (DOE) announced its investment of more than $4.3 million in seven independent, nonprofit, higher education institutions to strengthen Florida’s nursing workforce. The Linking Industry to Nursing Education (LINE) funding was allocated by the Florida Legislature during the 2022 legislative session to combat the state’s nursing workforce shortage.
“Florida is experiencing a severe shortage of nurses, and Florida’s independent colleges and universities are best suited to respond to market needs and fill the gap. We are grateful to Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida Legislature for investing in Florida’s health care workforce through ICUF schools,” said Bob Boyd, president and CEO of Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida (ICUF). “Last year, ICUF institutions across the state produced 3,600 nursing degrees, ranging from associate degrees to doctoral. With the LINE funding, we’re able to expand on this success, preparing more students for a career in nursing.”
The LINE funding was created by Senate Bill 2524. It’s a competitive grant program that provides $19 million to match funds, on a dollar-to-dollar basis, with participating institutions that partner with a hospital and/or health care provider in its recruitment efforts.
Every ICUF institution that applied for LINE funding was rewarded a grant. They include:
• AdventHealth University – $574,445, • Barry University – $949,214, • Florida Southern College – $120,000,
• Jacksonville University – $350,000, • Nova Southeastern University – $1,762,621, • Palm Beach Atlantic University – $500,000, • University of Miami – $75,000
“Florida is in need of more skilled and educated nurses, and Florida’s independent colleges and universities are an important part of the solution to this workforce shortage,” said Dennis Baxley, President Pro Tempore in the Florida Senate. “That’s why we invested this funding in workforce development, and I’m confident these grant recipients will deliver.”
The grants are intended to incentivize collaboration between nursing education programs and health care partners and to meet local, regional, and state workforce demands. Funds may be used to recruit faculty, recruit clinical preceptors and increase the capacity of high-quality nursing education programs.
With this funding, participating ICUF institutions will increase the capacity of their high-quality nursing education programs, which increases the number of nursing graduates entering the workforce and combats the state’s growing nursing shortage.