Scholarship Stories: Nursing Student John-Paul Klingensmith

Stanbridge University is showcasing Scholarship Stories to spotlight our hardworking and inspiring students, as well as encourage other Stanbridge students to apply for scholarships! Congratulations to nursing student, John-Paul Klingensmith on his Dr. Jonathan Wu Excellence in Nursing Scholarship. 

Why do you want to be a nurse? 

Scholarship Stories: Nursing Student John-Paul Klingensmith
Stanbridge University Nursing Student – John-Paul Klingensmith

I wanted to be a nurse for the same reason I believe most people want to, and that’s to help others in the community during their most desperate times. I feel I owe that to others. Secondly, I wanted to pursue this path to keep my parents healthy and safe. 

What advice do you have for others applying for scholarships? 

I have two pieces of advice for others interested in applying for scholarships. First, get involved in community activities near you. Don’t wait for an opportunity to fall in your lap. It’s easy to become distracted with work, homework, essays, friends, and class, but get out there and become involved in building your community. You never know who you will meet or the lessons you’ll learn.  

Second, don’t procrastinate. My best friend passed away over ten years ago while serving as a Ranger in Afghanistan. He always pushed the philosophy that had been drilled into him, “if it’s something worth doing, do it 100%.” Every time a challenge presents itself, I think about this philosophy and have adopted it as an ideology. If it’s worth doing, buckle down and go all the way. Do it right. When you find a scholarship worth your time, take the time out of your day to apply. Think your responses through, re-read them and be proud of your work. 

When you aren’t studying, what do you like to do for fun? 

When I am not studying, I like to surf, run, hike, camp. I also do a lot of woodworking and like to build and restore old furniture in my workshop. 

What is your best nursing program study tip? 

Be honest with yourself about what kind of student you are and be disciplined. As painful as it can be, you have to acknowledge your faults (and strengths). Going into this program, I knew my weaknesses and my strengths. I knew I had shortcomings in the past regarding my study habits. Still, I was also able to identify these. I faced them head-on and modified my daily activities and routines to be conducive to gaining the education I needed, not only to be successful in this program and career path but to be a better nurse.

What are you planning to do once you graduate from Stanbridge?

Once I graduate from the nursing program, I plan to work in the Med Surg/Telemetry Departments at the current hospital where I work. I will be doing this for the first six months of being an RN before transferring back into the ER. Once I gain confidence in my work and reach my one-year mark as an RN, I plan to pursue my BSN degree with an emphasis in emergency trauma. I hope to gain a job in a level 1 trauma receiving hospital one day. 

Interested in applying for a scholarship?

Stanbridge University has many scholarship opportunities available for students. Scholarship types include:

  • Institutional (All Programs)
  • ATI (Nursing)
  • Jonathan Wu Excellence in Nursing (Nursing)

For more details on how to apply, please email