The University of Arkansas at Monticello announced Thursday that it has received its second-biggest private donation, a $1.5 million estate gift from the late Raylene Steelman.
The majority of the money will go toward nursing scholarships. Brandy Haley, dean of the UAM school of nursing, said the donation will provide about $70,000 per year for nursing students.
“This gift will enhance UAM’s reputation as the premier educator in the health sciences,” Haley said. “Growing interest in our program means it will get even more competitive, and that adds value to the degrees you have earned.”
A Warren High School graduate, Steelman worked at the university as a librarian for 37 years. The university said her interest in providing nursing scholarships was sparked by the quality of care she received from UAM nurse graduates late in life. Steelman died April 12 in Monticello. She was 96.
UAM offers associate of applied science and bachelor of science degrees in nursing, in addition to LPN-to-RN, LPN-to-BSN and RN-to-BSN tracks, at its Monticello campus. It offers CNA and LPN programs at its Colleges of Technology in Crossett and McGehee.
The largest private gift to the university, $6 million from the Merle and Deloris Peterson estate, was announced last fall.