Who Doesn’t Like Something For Free?

Marisa Streelman, DNP, RN, CMSRN
Let’s not leave any money on the table!

I don’t think I have ever met a nurse, or really anyone for that matter, who doesn’t like when they can get something for free.

Whether it is a giveaway in the cafeteria, chechakoes from a conference, or ink pens from, well, anywhere — we can’t get enough. I am not any different. Maybe it is my Dutch heritage that makes me so thrifty, or it could have been growing up as the youngest of four kids — which means I received all of the hand-me-downs. 

When I started my first nursing job, I realized there are others like me. Always looking for the sponsored lunch (I know this is not allowed anymore), the free candy, donuts, bagels, pizza, brownies, cookies, or whatever else was left on the break room table. You know if you left it there, odds are it will be gone by the end of the shift. 

A few years before I started on the Board of Directors for AMSN, I applied and was appointed to the AMSN Scholarship and Awards committee. This was perfect. Not only did I get to help out other medical-surgical nurses, I was also able to provide them with something for FREE!

This year, we offered an additional grant, the AMSN Emergency Grant for Member Nurses.

It gave me joy to know that I could give away opportunities for a multitude of awards from AMSN to my fellow nurse colleagues. While working on the AMSN Scholarship and Awards committee, I was shocked to learn that sometimes the grants would go unused, or we did not have enough applicants to give all the money away. 

How could that be? Nurses love free stuff, as evidenced by the packed-to-the-brim suitcases of swag items that roll out after three days at an AMSN annual convention.

Do you mean that sometime nurses are leaving money on the table? I could not believe it, but it was true.

AMSN has over 10 scholarships and awards they give out each year.

  • Nurse In Washington Internship Grant (NIWI)
  • CMSRN Certification Grant (Winter)
  • CMSRN Certification Renewal Grant (Winter)
  • Convention Grant
  • CMSRN of Distinction Award
  • Higher Education Scholarship
  • Clinical Leadership Award
  • Clinical Practice Award
  • CMSRN Certification Grant (Summer)
  • CMSRN Certification Renewal Grant (Summer)

These 10 grants distribute over $40,000 to 50 AMSN members each year!

This is an amazing perk for being an AMSN member.

If you have ever received an award from AMSN, you know how much these funds make a difference in your ability to certify, remain certified, attend convention, be recognized, and help with your career and professional development. 

10 grants distribute over $40,000 to 50 AMSN members each year!

This year, we offered an additional grant, the AMSN Emergency Grant for Member Nurses. This was put in place in response to the stories we heard from our members of the hardships they were experiencing due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Not only did COVID-19 impact every aspect of the medical-surgical nurse’s practice environment, it also impacted our personal lives. Many cared for COVID-19 positive patients, supported testing centers, and are now providing vaccines.

Offering even slight relief through this grant was the least AMSN could do to support our AMSN members during this unprecedented time. 

As we move forward this year, let’s not leave any money on the table, because we all know — we deserve it! I encourage you to apply, and hope you will tell other AMSN members to apply today, who doesn’t love free stuff!

View all of the grants, requirements, and the dates they are open throughout the year.

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