A New Vision for Scholarships: 1,200 Nigerian Midwifery Students Receive Support to Finish School

A ceremony on August 13 in Abuja honored 1,200 midwifery students from 54 schools in 30 Nigerian states who are receiving scholarship and bursary awards through a program supported by CapacityPlus. The awards benefit students in their last year of training who are at risk of not finishing their studies due to financial constraints.

Scholarship recipientsCapacityPlus had previously provided 865 midwives and community health extension workers with the scholarships, which are designed to ensure that students are able to complete their preservice education and help meet the country’s need for qualified health workers. Many of those students, who received their awards in February, are graduating from their programs this month.

As described in a recent blog post by Pius Uwamanua, CapacityPlus’s preservice education manager in Nigeria, the program also represents a new vision for awarding scholarships, with beneficiaries expressing gratitude for the transparent selection process based on concrete requirements.

The scholarships contribute to the project’s goal to “ensure health workers have the tools, support and training they need to provide communities they serve with the best services,” noted CapacityPlus’s Malik Jaffer in an article in the Abuja Daily Trust, one of a number of Nigerian media outlets that covered the awards ceremony.

CapacityPlus collaborated with the Federal Ministry of Health and other stakeholders to implement the scholarship program after an assessment conducted by the project in 2012 revealed financial difficulties to be among the most common reasons for student attrition and inadequate production of health workers in Nigeria.

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Photo by Joseph Eton (scholarship recipients)