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UWF Nursing Gets A Financial Boost

University of West Florida

The Nursing Program at the University of West Florida received a large gift this week. Dr. ErmalynnKiehl, the Dean of the College of Health at UWF says the D.W. McMillan Foundation, a local non-profit, has donated $250,000 to the University's Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program. That's UWF’s undergraduate nursing program.

Dr. Kiehl says the foundation has supported the program in the past with scholarship funds and last year donated towards a birthing suite in the University's Nursing Skills and Simulation Learning Center. Now, with this gift, the BSN program is now officially renamed the Dr. D.W. McMillan BSN Nursing Program. That's after Dr. Dan W. McMillan, who practiced medicine in the area years ago and founded the foundation.

This year, the UWF nursing program introduced a second cohort which brought the number of nursing students up to 100. Dr. Kiehl says the money will help that and other expansions of the program. "It can help everything from capacity building to the expansion of the control station for the simulation space. It's very unrestricted in our ability to use it."

Dr. Kiehl says The D.W. McMillan Foundation and the McMillan family have had ties to the region and the university for a while. "If you go to Brewton (Alabama) which is where (the family comes) from, you'll notice many things up there have the McMillan name on it. But a long time ago Dr. Dan McMillan was a physician here in (Pensacola) and was well known here in town. So, he had a love not just for their home in Alabama but also for his second home in Pensacola." Dr. Dan's grandson, also named Dan McMillan, had a grand daughter who completed the nursing program at UWF and is not a practicing registered nurse. 

Dan McMillan also currently serves on the Board of the UWF Foundation. Dr. ErmalynnKiehl is the Dean of the College of Health at UWF. The gift was announced Tuesday, March 1 at a ceremony in the UWF Nursing Department.