Leadership scholarship

The Florence Nightingale Foundation has an enviable and well-deserved reputation across the UK for its bespoke leadership scholarship programmes. Our programmes are designed to build competence and confidence in our scholars that will enable them to contribute to policy and practice at local and national level thus improving patient care and health outcomes.

The Foundation are outstanding at developing innovative curriculum for nurses such as in the leadership scholarship. The inspiring curriculum pushes people, grows skills and it is at the edge of contemporary leadership education.

Eamonn Sullivan

Chief Nurse at Royal Marsden Hospital

Leadership scholarship overview

Our leadership development programmes create opportunities for scholars to explore and discover their own leadership style and develop the essential skills to be a courageous and confident leader.

Nurses and midwives registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) are eligible to apply for our fully funded scholarships. However we welcome applicants outside the UK with an independent funding source.

 

We focus on facilitated and experiential learning that challenges leaders to think differently about their personal.

All leadership scholars are required to complete an improvement project and are required to publish and present this at the end of their scholarship year.

The maximum funding available for each scholar is £10,000 to fund both the core and bespoke programmes.

We offer three types of leadership scholarship programmes:

Senior Leaders

Available to senior nurses or midwives at Executive Board level or very senior manager level.

These scholarships are sponsored by:

  • Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (Northern Ireland) for nurses and midwives working in the NHS in Northern Ireland
  • Health Education England, for nurses and midwives working in the NHS in the South of England
  • The National Leadership and Innovation Centre for Nursing and Midwifery (NLIC) for nurses and midwives working in Southern Ireland
  • Health Education England for nurses and midwives who may be a descendant from the “Windrush generation” or who are from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic background, working in the NHS in England.

Aspiring Director of Nursing/Midwifery

Available to nurses and midwives with the potential to secure a Board level position within the next two to three years.

These scholarships are sponsored by:

  • Health Education England, for nurses and midwives working in the NHS in the South of England
  • Health Education England, North Central and East London for nurses and midwives working in the NHS in North Central and East London
  • Health Education England for nurses and midwives who may be a descendant from the “Windrush generation” or who are from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic background, working in the NHS in England.

Emerging Leaders

Available to Band 7 or 8 (or equivalent) nurses or midwives in a leadership role.

Sponsored by:

These scholarships are sponsored by:

  • Health Education England, for nurses and midwives working in the NHS in the South of England
  • Health Education England, North Central and East London for nurses and midwives working in the NHS in North Central and East London
  • Bupa – for nurses working within Bupa in the UK
  • Health Education England for nurses and midwives who may be a descendant from the “Windrush generation” or who are from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic background, working in the NHS in England
  • Public Health England– The Nana Quawson Public Health Leadership award – for nurses and midwives who are working in public health nursing. Download further information on Florence Nightingale Foundation Public Health England Scholarship here.
  • Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps for British Army Nurses
  • Teenage Cancer Trust – for nurses working with teenagers and young adults with cancer
  • Burdett Trust for Nursing – for all nurses working in the UK.

Benefits for you

Be part of a 'life-changing' experience

Scholars report the “life changing” experience and the profound professional and personal impact. Scholars report feeling more confident to speak out and influence policy and practice improvements at local and national levels thus improving patient care and health outcomes.


  • Career development

    Approximately 80% of our of scholars are promoted into more senior roles within 2 years of the scholarship.
  • Impact policy and practice

    Scholars report the positive impact they have on leading teams and improving patient care and health outcomes. In a recent survey, 82.5% of leadership scholars identified that they made an impact to health and social care policy and practice.
  • Support from the Foundation

    The Foundation are on-hand to support you throughout the scholarship process. You will also have an experienced mentor and have access to your fellow scholars for support.
  • Network with like-minded nurses and midwives

    Scholars are now part of a growing Alumni network (over 600) providing on-going support and in some cases, friends for life.
  • New knowledge through evidence-based approaches

    Like Florence, scholars will work on evidence-based approaches and use and share their new knowledge to impact patients and lead changes in policy and practice. Like Florence, scholars will generate new knowledge and use this to impact on improved patient care and health outcomes.

Benefits for employer

  • Improvement in patient and health outcomes
  • Retention of staff – scholars stay in healthcare
  • Positive impact on the team and beneficial for staff engagement
  • Recognition of employers commitment to leadership development and succession planning


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Programme structure

The core scholarship programme for all leadership scholar levels includes:
  • Individual assessment of leadership strengths and areas for development. This will be undertaken very shortly after a scholarship has been awarded. This will be followed by 3-hour personal feedback session.
  • An experienced mentor is allocated to each scholar for the duration of the scholarship. Our mentors are from central government, the corporate sector, NHS and other care organisations. The mentor will work with the scholar in advising the selection of development programmes available from the “menu”.
  • Welcome day – a briefing day for all FNF leadership, travel and research scholars and the establishment of individual cohort learning communities
  • 2-day residential with unique cohort of peer scholars designed to: 1) Facilitate scholars build a learning community and a robust network of peer support throughout their scholarship and beyond, 2) Define the core elements and expectations of the scholarship, 3) Facilitated discussion on current leadership challenges and opportunities and other contemporary topics, 4) Introduce scholars to co-consulting, a simple process for giving and receiving help
  • 2-day or 3-day (depending on leadership level) “Personal Presence & Impact” Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) Programme
  • 1-day mid programme - cohort follow up with discussion of contemporary topics with invited speakers
  • Access to leadership development opportunities to suit individual development needs including options to travel overseas for example: 1) Windsor Leadership 2) Kings Fund 3) Ashridge 4) Harvard 5) Roffey Park 6) Cranfield
  • Optional programme element includes: Westminster Experience “Power Breakers”. People, whether working in the public, third or private sector, may have little first-hand experience of how Government actually works. The day programme is designed to help you understand this. The day includes a visit to the Houses of Parliament.
  • Florence Nightingale Commemoration Service, Westminster Abbey, London - a unique opportunity for nurses, midwives, health care professionals, family members and guests to celebrate their professions and at the same time give thanks for Florence Nightingale’s extraordinary legacy to healthcare
  • Annual Florence Nightingale Foundation Conference
  • High profile award ceremony to celebrate the success of our scholars at end of their scholarship year

Key Dates

Advert opens 27 July 2018 and closes 14 September 2018
Shortlisting will take place in late September 2018
Interviews will take place on 22, 23, 24, 25, 30 and 31 October and 1 and 2 November 2018

For successful applicants see below for key dates:

Emerging Leaders

Welcome day: 11 March 2019
Residential module: 19 – 21 March 2019
Mid programme: 12 Sept 2019
RADA Communication Skills: 6 – 7 June or 10 – 11 June 2019
Westminster Experience: TBC

Aspiring Nurse / Midwife Director

Welcome day: 11 March 2019
Residential module: 2 – 4 April 2019
Mid programme: 19 September 2019
RADA Communication Skills: 18-20 June or 1-3 July 2019
Westminster Experience: TBC

Senior Leaders

Welcome day: 11 March 2019
Residential module: 9 – 11 April 2019
Mid programme: 26 September 2019
RADA Communication Skills: 25-27 June or 29-31 July 2019
Westminster Experience: TBC

Eligibility criteria

Our scholarships are open to nurses and midwives who are seeking to advance their personal development as credible leaders. Nurses and midwives registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) are eligible to apply for our fully funded scholarships. However we welcome applicants outside the UK with an independent funding source.

Emerging Leader:

  • Registered Nurse or Midwife
  • Band 7 or 8 or equivalent
  • Chief Executive or Director of Nursing level of support letter confirming time available to complete scholarship activities
  • Confirmation of 10% employer contribution (£1,000)

Aspiring Nurse/Midwife Director:

  • Registered Nurse or Midwife
  • Band 8 and above or equivalent
  • Chief Executive or Director of Nursing level of support letter confirming time available to complete scholarship activities
  • Confirmation of 10% employer contribution (£1,000)

Senior Leader:

  • Registered Nurse or Midwife
  • Executive level role or very senior manager
  • Chief Executive level of support letter confirming time available to complete scholarship activities
  • Confirmation of 10% employer contribution (£1,000)

Application process

  1. Apply online
  2. Successful applications are selected for a panel based interview

Information for applying online:

Upon application, you are required to upload the following information:

  • Personal, employment and education information
  • A copy of your NMC registration documentation
  • Chief Executive or Director of Nursing level of support letter confirming time available to complete scholarship activities and confirmation of 10% employer contribution (£1,000)
  • Details of your employer and finance department for authorisation for scholar to join the programme.
  • Signed terms and conditions

Please note the following:

  • Incomplete applications will not be accepted
  • Applications without confirmation of 10% contribution will not be accepted
  • Applications without Chief Executive or Director of Nursing support will not be accepted



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