In 2011, Chris Hester created the Kinnser Scholars Program at ACC with a $225,000 gift. An additional donation in 2014 raised the scholarship fund to $1 million. The funds cover tuition, fees, and program expenses for 400 nursing students. The program is part of the Austin Community College Foundation and is curently scheduled to extend through 2027.
The Kinnser Software Scholars Program is a great source of aid to nursing students. “Kinnser’s generosity will change many lives – for both deserving students and the patients they will care for as the next generation of nurses,” says Corby Jastrow, board chair for the Austin Community College Foundation. “We thank Kinnser Software for its commitment to ACC and for taking away one significant barrier so many students face.”
The Austin Community College Foundation was established to expand higher education and training throughout the Austin Community College District. Its mission is to raise funds to ensure student success and to develop community support for the college. The ACC Foundation is led by a volunteer board of business and community leaders whose dedication to education allows for the growth of college initiatives. Over $12 million has been raised through the Foundation to support programs and scholarships.
“When I founded Kinnser Software, I had a primary goal – to provide software that will help nurses and their home health agencies overcome the challenges they face in their daily work lives. Now, with the Kinnser Scholars Program, we are excited to help nurses acquire the funds necessary for their education, which is often the first challenge many face before they can enter the profession.”
— Christopher Hester,
Founder & President of Kinnser
Sarah Foti, mother of three children, is one of ten ACC students who received the Kinnser Software scholarship funds for the fall 2011 semester. After receiving her General Educational Development (GED) in 2008, Foti chose ACC’s nursing program to pursue a career that would support her family. She is now in the last year of the ADN program.
“I am a very dedicated nursing student,” Foti wrote in a letter to Kinnser Software. “I have a lot of challenges right now. Going to school and being a single mother of three children is a constant struggle. I have to put my studies first a lot of the time in order to succeed. This scholarship is a blessing to me and my children.”
Scholarship recipient Wendy Jordan is currently enrolled in the LVN program and taking pre-requisite coursework for the ADN program. Jordan is a member of the National Student Nurses Association and is a Class President of the Fredericksburg, TX LVN Program. When she and her husband both found themselves laid off, they decided it was the right time for her to pursue her dream of a nursing career.
“At a time in my life when I am struggling between supporting my family and getting an education for a second career, I have been so amazed at the generosity of the community,” Jordan commented. “And, how people I barely know, or have just met, step up to help or lend a helping hand. Your generous support will help toward tuition and books; I can only tell you how much this is greatly appreciated.”