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Conway Nursing Pathway Program

Conway Pathfinder Group

Demand for highly qualified nurses has skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic, while at the same time, experts have observed that the national nursing workforce is shrinking. As the need for engaged talented pediatric nurses increases, Children’s National Hospital is more intentional in supporting transition to practice opportunities like the Conway Nursing Pathway Program.  

The Pathway Program is a place where aspiring and existing nurses can launch or advance their careers. It accomplishes this through a mixture of financial support, hands-on experience and face-to-face connection with a supportive community and mentorship. 

Since its inception in 2019, the program has created opportunities for 36 students and 20 mentors to grow in their nursing career path – while averting more than $1 million in student debt.

What Our Program Offers

The Conway Nursing Pathway Program helps aspiring nurses establish rewarding careers in pediatric nursing. Existing nurses participating in the program will deepen their career satisfaction through mentorship, professional development and advanced study. As a result, more children will benefit from competent and compassionate care — provided by experienced, exceptional nurses who love their work.

The Conway Program will offer participants, known as pathfinders:

  • Career preparation experiences, such as summer work for high school students — particularly those from under-resourced backgrounds; 
  • Scholarships; 
  • A one-on-one nurse mentoring relationship; and
  • The opportunity to become a pediatric nurse and a chance to thrive within the profession.

Focus

To recruit new nurses, the Conway Program focuses on high school students, college students who have selected nursing as their major and nursing majors in associate degree programs committed to baccalaureate education. To retain exceptional nurses, the program helps existing Children’s National employees advance their studies and professional skills through scholarships and mentorship.

Goals

We strive to:

  • Address the growing nursing shortage through innovative solutions that will recruit and retain nurses;
  • Stimulate a passion for careers in pediatric nursing through early experiences that demonstrate the rewards;
  • Sustain engagement and career satisfaction for existing nurses; and
  • Reduce participants’ financial burden without creating debt for those in the recruitment or the retention groups.

Requirements and Timeline

Pathfinders and mentors must be able to meet all program requirements. Pathfinder orientation dates and times will vary. Additional orientation and/or program requirements may be required depending on each pathfinder’s entry level and/or role. Pathfinders may also be eligible for part-time employment at Children’s National if applicable.

Mentors will need to commit to serving as a mentor based on program requirements, and may serve between two and four years in this role.

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