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De Anza College News Release

October 26, 2006

Marisa Spatafore
De Anza College

Michelle McGurk
Community Foundation Silicon Valley

Donation Through Community Foundation Silicon Valley Will Help Address Regional Nursing Shortage, Support Disadvantaged Students

CUPERTINO-De Anza College and Community Foundation Silicon Valley today announced a $1.08 million gift through the foundation's Silicon Valley Scholars Scholarship Fund that will enable De Anza to educate an additional 66 nurses over the next five years. The gift will help support nursing students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.

"We are thrilled and honored to receive this grant," said Foothill-De Anza Community College District Chancellor Martha J. Kanter. "This will mark a significant step forward in addressing the shortage of nurses in Silicon Valley hospitals."

"De Anza is deeply grateful for this gift," said college President Brian Murphy. "The grant's focus on supporting economically disadvantaged students will provide scores of opportunities for a rewarding and well-paying career."

Silicon Valley faces a severe shortage of nurses and other healthcare professionals to work in area hospitals. The region currently produces 224 nurses each year to fill the 615 local nursing jobs that become available annually. This gap is expected to widen over the next decade as many area hospitals expand their facilities and services.

De Anza College, which educates more than one-quarter of Silicon Valley's nurses, nevertheless cannot serve all students who would like to join the profession. Qualifying students-which number around 250-must participate in a state-mandated lottery for the 24 coveted spaces that current state funding levels permit the college to accept. The cost to educate a nurse in De Anza's two-year program is approximately $13,000 per year, while current annual state funding for Foothill-De Anza is $4,376 per student.

The Silicon Valley Scholars Scholarship Fund gift, donated by an anonymous Community Foundation donor, will enable De Anza to admit an additional six students per quarter over the next five years. Each cohort of six students will study for six quarters, which will include classroom theory courses, hands-on practice study in the Nursing Skills Laboratory and clinical rotations through local hospitals and medical care facilities.

"The community foundation's donor is most concerned about the future of health care and the tremendous nursing shortage in Silicon Valley," said Jeff Sunshine, director of programs for Community Foundation Silicon Valley. "Additionally, our donor is eager to assist disadvantaged residents in pursuing meaningful and rewarding careers. The Community Foundation is delighted that we can partner with De Anza College to meet these two goals."

"This gift will enable the college to support a wider range of students," said Kanter. "In addition, we will seek to maintain-and further augment-the increased number of students made possible by this gift in order to help address the nursing shortage as well as to provide fulfilling careers to promising students."

"We deeply appreciate the donor's vision, foresight and generosity to De Anza College through the Silicon Valley Scholars Scholarship Fund," Murphy concluded.

De Anza College, one of the largest single-campus community colleges in the nation and one of two colleges in the Foothill-De Anza Community College District, has served the students of Silicon Valley for almost 40 years. De Anza provides an average of 25,000 students each quarter with outstanding general education and vocational courses as well as interdisciplinary studies, community service opportunities, on-the-job-training, internships, collaborative programs with businesses and industries, and online and television classes. Read more about the college at

Community Foundation Silicon Valley and Peninsula Community Foundation are merging to become Silicon Valley Community Foundation-a catalyst for inspired philanthropy and community engagement serving all of San Mateo and Santa Clara counties. To find out more, visit