Finn to apply PEO grant toward bachelor’s degree in nursing

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PEO member Ella Pennington, left, presents a $3,000 PEO scholarship check to Erin Finn of Perry.

Members of Chapter OK in Perry, part of the Philanthropic Educational Organization PEO, awarded Erin Finn of Perry a $3,000 grant to use toward the completion of a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from Mercy College of Health Sciences in Des Moines.

Finn said she seized the opportunity to pursue her passion for a career in healthcare after restructuring and changes at her job last year. She took on the challenge of completing a new, accelerated nursing program with plans to return to the workforce on a different career path.

She is excited for this career change, Finn said, which not only will enable her to make an impact on the lives of others but also have a schedule that provides flexibility and work-life balance for an active wife, community member and mother of three young children.

Finn plans to complete her degree in August 2019, passing the boards and starting work as a full-time nurse in a hospital setting.

Chapter OK is proud to play a small part in helping Finn achieve her goal. Many congratulations and all the best to Finn as she completes her final term and re-enters the workforce with her new, marketable skills.

Education is the primary philanthropy of PEO, whose motto is “Women helping women reach for the stars.” The Program for Continuing Education (PCE), one of several projects of PEO, provides a one-time grant to women whose education has been interrupted and who find it necessary to return to school to complete a degree or certificate needed to improve or gain skills leading to employment.

Finn received the maximum grant award, which may be used for education-related expenses such as tuition, books, required uniforms or equipment or childcare while attending class or studying.

As of May 2018, more than $55.3 million in PCE grants have been awarded by PEO. Recipients need not be members of PEO.

PEO was founded Jan. 21, 1869, by seven students at Iowa Wesleyan College in Mount Pleasant. This loyal group of college friends — “sisters” — were truly “one for all and all for one.” When the entire group of loyal friends was not accepted into a sorority, the solution seemed obvious. “Fine by us,”they immediately resolved. “Let’s start our own sisterhood!”

From that defiance and friendship of seven women, PEO has grown to a membership of more than 225,000 members in chapters across the U.S. and Canada, with its international headquarters in Des Moines. Perry has two active chapters: Chapter OK, led by President Kathy Powell, and Chapter DE, led by President Becky Greenwald.

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