A nurse touches the lives of so many people. Even those who have not experienced care by the hands of a nurse understand their importance and the passion they inspire.
Growing up, William Baker witnessed the compassion and care shown by his mother, a licensed practical nurse and later physical therapist. To honor his mother’s memory, Baker committed $50,000 to the UF College of Nursing to endow the Nyna June Baker Scholarship Fund. The scholarship will assist undergraduate nursing students with financial need.
June Baker worked as an LPN before earning her credentials in physical therapy. She was then tasked to start the new physical therapy department in the local hospital of their hometown, Oskaloosa, Iowa. During World War II, she worked at the Welch Convalescent Hospital in Daytona Beach, nursing soldiers who returned from war. When the family moved to Vero Beach, Florida, in 1959, June continued her nursing career at the Indian River Memorial Hospital and at the Sunshine Rehabilitation Center. She passed away in 2007.
“My mother devoted her entire working life to the health care profession,” Baker said. “She was a giving, caring person, and she enjoyed seeing people improve and being able to assist in that. It was just in her nature. I have a strong tie with UF since it is where I received my education. My hope for this nursing scholarship is to provide assistance for students to achieve their goals. We need more well-prepared nurses. Nursing is an essential profession and vital to the entire world.”