More than $1.5 million in scholarships awarded to Blessing-Rieman students

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QUINCY — Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing and Health Sciences, in cooperation with the Blessing Foundation, has awarded $1.6 million in scholarships and grants to Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing and Health Sciences students for the 2022-23 academic year. Fifty-two students received money from 44 endowed scholarships, one additional scholarship and one general financial aid fund.

Seven students received funds from the Charles M. and Dorothy Briggs Scholarship Award. The Briggs were residents of Brown County, Ill. Briggs scholars were Gabriele Brooks, Donnellson, Iowa; Allison Coonrod, Liberty; Kayli Harshman, Barry; Isabella Jarvis, Rockport; Kassidy Kenning, Fowler; Nicholas Martelli, Effingham; and Madison Moore, Quincy.

Donna Archibald of Quincy was awarded the Virgil E. Kendrick Scholarship. Kendrick was a farmer in Timewell and the eldest son of John J. and Arlene Kendrick. He died at age 33, never having married or had children.  An anonymous donor never wanted him forgotten and established this scholarship in Virgil’s name. The scholarship is to benefit two students annually, with first preference given to students meeting the criteria who live in the Illinois counties of Brown, Schuyler, Morgan or Scott. The second student is chosen in the spring semester once eligibility of criteria is confirmed.

Morgan Ingram, Center, Mo., earned the Mary Lou (Groves) Tuttle Scholarship. Tuttle was a 1938 graduate of the Blessing School of Nursing. She died in January 2004.

Three students received the Blessing Volunteers in Partnership Scholarship.  The award is given, in part, for demonstrated value in volunteerism.  The students who earned this scholarship are Mason Alley, Edina, Mo.; Taylor Coley, Bolingbrook and Charlotte Horman of Quincy.

Breanna Bordewick of Quincy received the Olive Billbe Jurgens & Cara R. Schwartz Scholarship. Billbe Jurgens was the aunt of Pam Brown, former president/chief executive officer, Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing, and was instrumental in encouraging Brown to pursue higher education and nursing as a career. She was the oldest of 12 children, raised during the Great Depression and was the first in her family to complete high school and the only child to pursue formal education.  Billbe Jurgens died in 2007.  Cara Schwartz was Brown’s niece. She had gone on from graduating from Mount Zion High School to attending Richland Community College in Decatur, John Wood Community College and Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing, both in Quincy. Schwartz died in January 2011 after a battle with cancer.  Brown established a scholarship in her memory in August 2015. The two scholarships were merged in 2018.

Lauren Wheelan of Hannibal, Mo., received the Brad and Bonnie Billings Scholarship. Brad Billings retired in September 2014 as president/chief executive officer of Blessing Corporate Services with 33 years of service to Blessing. Bonnie is known for her participation in the arts, particularly Quincy Community Theater.

Aleassa Hruska, Atlanta, Mo., received the Jack D. Huff Scholarship.  Huff, who died in 2006, was a well-known Quincy area insurance executive.

Kimberly Schutte of Quincy received the Bill and Zig Brown Scholarship. Zig Brown served Blessing for 42 years, beginning as a staff nurse and retiring as human resources vice president for Blessing Corporate Services. The scholarship was established in memory of her husband, Bill Brown.

Chelsea Zahn, Edina, Mo., received the Elkins Sisters’ Scholarship.  Virginia Belle Elkins Starr and Betsy Frances Elkins Wharton, born in Knox County, Mo., both attended the Blessing School of Nursing graduating in 1955 and 1961, respectively. Virginia served as a Nauvoo-Colusa school nurse, worked for Carthage Memorial Hospital, Fort Madison Health Center and the Keokuk Area Hospital Skilled Nursing Unit.  Betsy traveled from state to state throughout her career, from Army base to Army base, and worked in many nursing positions, retiring from Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans’ Hospital in Columbia, MO.  This scholarship recognizes students from Knox County, Mo., first, then Hancock County in Illinois and Boone County, Mo., third.

Charlotte Horman of Quincy received the Lawrence L. Swearingen Scholarship, named in honor of the man who led Blessing Hospital for 33 years. Swearingen retired as Blessing president/chief executive officer in May 2005.  The scholarship recognizes students who demonstrate strong personal character, leadership and self-reliance.

Delaney Mason of Quincy received the Frances Waterkotte Scholarship. Preference is given to Quincy Notre Dame High School graduates first; Quincy High School graduates second, followed by a graduate of any high school in the area.

Emily Disselhorst, Palmyra, Mo., received the Marilyn Murphy Shepherd Scholarship. Shepherd was a graduate of Blessing Hospital School of Nursing and a faculty member of the college. She died in 2017. The scholarship was established by Shepherd in 2008 in the memory of her parents, Ralph and Jean Murphy.

Audrey Ancell of Loraine received the Blessing Nurses Alumni Association Scholarship award.  The Blessing Nurses Alumni Association has a long history of providing scholarship support for nursing students enrolled in Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing and earlier programs. The establishment of this scholarship was a further commitment by the Blessing Nurses Alumni Association to recognize above average academic achievement and foster the availability of nursing education.

Riley Graskewicz of Keytesville, Mo., earned the Dr. James and Dorothy Rouner Scholarship. The late Dr. Rouner served Quincy-area patients for 54 years in general practice and was a founder of the Physicians & Surgeons Clinic.

Donna Archibald of Quincy received the Dr. Kent W. Barber Memorial Scholarship. Dr. Barber helped found The Quincy Clinic, which when merged with Physicians & Surgeons Clinic became known as Quincy Medical Group.  Dr. Barber was a general surgeon who practiced in Quincy for 52 years.

Rebecca Reinbeck of Quincy received the Nona L. Knight Young Scholarship. Knight Young of Clayton was a 1958 graduate of the Blessing Hospital School of Nursing.

Lori Leathers of Cairo, Mo., received the Ellen Kuhn Phelps and Col. Fred Phelps Nursing Scholarship. Mrs. Phelps is a native of Payson and worked at Blessing Hospital at various times during her 46-year nursing career. Prior to being called to active duty in the United States Army Nurse Corps and serving around the world, Col. Phelps was an instructor at the Blessing Hospital School of Nursing, the forerunner of Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing.

Paula Dabney, Canton, Mo., received the Elmer and Lola Orth Scholarship established by the Orth estate of Clark County, Mo., in April 1991.

Jazzlynn Holman, Edina, Mo., earned the James R. Forrest Memorial Scholarship.  It was established in memory of Forrest, a Blessing-Rieman Class of 1978 graduate, by his mother, June Forrest.

Alexis Damon of Pleasant Hill earned the Stan L. Bartley Scholarship for master of science in nursing degree students.  Dr. Bartley served patients as a family practitioner at the former Physicians and Surgeons Clinic from 1969-78.  He then joined the Blessing Hospital Emergency Room Medical Staff and worked there until his retirement in 2002.

Elizabeth Talley of Carthage earned the Dr. Peter and Mary Leffman Scholarship. Dr. Leffman was a long-time Quincy otolaryngologist, retiring in 1997. He and his wife remained active for many years of their retirement in hospital and community projects.

Kennady Fleer of Quincy received the Leta Faye Mitchell Munson Scholarship. A Hannibal native, Mitchell Munson was a 1955 graduate of the Blessing Hospital School of Nursing and spent most of her career in northern Delaware.  She died in 2010.

Emily Rehagen of St. Charles, Mo., received a Paul H. and Anne B. Gardner Memorial Scholarship.  It was established in 1988 to be awarded to a nursing student who exhibited leadership in Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing’s Student Nurse Organization.

Addison Martin of Industry received the Shay L. Bartley Drummond Scholarship. Drummond, the mother of three, worked as a certified surgical technologist at Blessing Hospital before continuing her education at Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing. She graduated in May 2007 and joined the Adams County Health Department in Quincy.

Katie Harness of Sutter was selected for the Fessenden Family Scholarship. Dr. Corrine Fessenden was a Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing Associate Professor for more than 20 years. She earned her master degree in nursing from the University of Missouri-Columbia and her doctorate from Wayne State University in Detroit.

Autumn Rischar of Quincy received the Carol Carter Scholarship. This award was started by Bob G. Carter in memory of his wife and in honor of the years of care the Pittsfield couple received at Blessing Hospital.

Payton Hamilton of Abingdon was awarded the Dr. Newton and Ruth DuPuy Nursing Scholarship. Dr. DuPuy began his medical career in Quincy in 1946 as an obstetrician/gynecologist. He retired in 1984. During his 50-year career, he delivered more than 10,000 babies, was chief of staff at Blessing Hospital, and chief of obstetrics and gynecology at Blessing and St. Mary Hospitals.

Taylor Knuffman of Quincy was awarded a scholarship from the Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing General Financial Aid Fund.

Taylor Coley of Bolingbrook received funds from the Lucille B. Rieman Scholarship Award. The Rieman scholarship recognizes full-time students who demonstrate above average academic achievement and participate in college and community activities, and is for whom the college is named.

Hailey King of Elsberry, Mo., received the Blessing-Rieman General Endowment Fund scholarship.

Zoey Swift of Brighton received funds from the Lauretta M. Eno Nursing Scholarship. Eno served as director of nursing, director of nursing education and assistant administrator during a 23-year career at Blessing Hospital.

Laikean James of Hull received the Elizabeth R. Keys Scholarship. The scholarship was established by the late Dr. E. Hayden and Katie Keys in memory of Dr. Keys’ mother, a nurse. 

Morgan Ingram, Center, Mo., and Antonio Medrano of Beardstown were awarded the Candice Rae Barker Leeper Scholarship.  Leeper was an assistant professor for 23 years at Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing and died in 2014.

Camryn Current of Quincy received the Dr. Robert and Shirley Murphy Scholarship. Dr. Murphy practiced internal medicine in Quincy for 37 years.

Morgan Kasparie of Ursa received the Tayna Scott Kyer Memorial Scholarship.  This fund was established by Kyer’s husband, Steve, and their two children after her death at age 34 in 1993. Kyer worked for many years as a nurse in Blessing Hospital’s Critical Care Area.

Megan Grimm, Morrill, Kan., earned the Marian Milligan Scholarship, recognizing a student who demonstrates outstanding professional nursing characteristics.

Rebecca Martin of Quincy received the Dick and Carole Scranton Scholarship.  Carole Scranton, a graduate of the Blessing Hospital School of Nursing, was the first certified critical care nurse at Blessing Hospital.  She died in 2006.  This scholarship fund was renamed in honor of the passing of Carole’s husband, Dick, in December 2008.

Audrey Hermann of Old Monroe, Mo., received the Dr. Carl W. and Jane Hagler Scholarship award.  Dr. Hagler joined the former Physician & Surgeon’s Clinic in Quincy in 1946. In 1963, he was selected to chair the Adams County Medical Society’s polio immunization project. The project’s goal was to immunize every Adams County and Pike County resident over 2 months old against polio. Dr. Hagler died in 1977.

Alexandria Meyer of Mendon received the Maj. Constance Beck Hash Scholarship named after the native of Quincy who graduated from the Blessing Hospital School of Nursing in 1945. She was a nurse in the United States Air Force for 20 years. Maj. Hash died in 2008. The scholarship in her honor is available to veterans of the United States Air Force, Army, Navy or Marine Corps; or a child or grandchild of a veteran.

Christie Settles of Eldred was awarded the Lucille V. Stuffing Scholarship. Stuffing, of Ursa, worked at Blessing Hospital for 30 years as a nurse’s aide. She died in 2012 at age 91.

Alexandria Scott of Kansas City was awarded the Trautvetter Family Scholarship.  The scholarship was created in memory of Lynne Virginia Trautvetter, who died in her home in Arlington, Va., in December, 2015.  She had earned her RN-BSN degree from Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing.  This family scholarship is named in honor of Lynne and her four aunts who became nurses: Virginia Linquist Trautvetter, Naomi Trautvetter Jingst, Doris Trautvetter Snider and Delma Jean Trautvetter Hardy.

Lindsey Baugh of Hannibal, Mo., received the Lundberg Family Scholarship.  The scholarship is a memorial to the long history of farming in the Lundberg family.  Two of Carl R. Lundberg’s daughters, Carol and Barbara, are nurses who graduated from the nursing programs of Blessing Hospital.

Katie Harness of Sutter earned the Reon B. Altgilbers Scholarship, established in 2016 to honor her life by her family.  Altgilbers was a determined, goal-oriented wife and mother who dedicated many years to Blessing Health System through employment and volunteering, as well as to other charitable organizations in the area.  She died in 2015 at age 53.

Benjamin Rachilla of Mountain Top, Pa., was awarded the Norma Jean McNay Scholarship. Norma McNay began her own career as a registered nurse at Blessing Hospital in 1959 and taught in the Blessing Hospital School of Nursing as a clinical instructor in foundations of nursing.  She served as a resident member of the School of Nursing Committee with Lucille (Cedric) Rieman (of which the College eventually was named), and with her 55 years on the School/College of Nursing Board, the health care community is forever grateful for her dedication and 60 years of service to the Blessing Health System.

Kelsey (Jordan) Brown of Quincy earned the AAUW Scholarship.  The AAUW has been helping women pursue higher education since 1881.

Five scholars were awarded the Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing & Health Sciences Crisis and Scholarship Fund Scholarship. They were Mason Alley, Edina, Mo.; Chelsea Bisch, Edina, Mo.; Myah Gray, Warsaw; Natalie Howell, Payson; and Kaleigh Roberts, Quincy. The BRCN & Health Sciences Crisis and Scholarship Fund assists students enrolled in one of the college’s special programs — radiologic technology, respiratory care, medical laboratory and health information management.

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