A donation of $10,000 was recently given to the University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana (UAHT) Foundation to establish the Nina Nivens Thompson Memorial Endowed Scholarship at UAHT. The scholarship will be awarded to a Blevins High School graduate attending UAHT, with preference given to nursing students and single mothers.
Nina Nivens Thompson was one of fourteen children born to Ruff and Lillie Belle Nivens in Hempstead County, Arkansas, on October 29, 1949. Mrs. Thompson was a graduate of Blevins High School. She married and had five children. After becoming a single parent when her children were young, she attended the then Red River Vo-Tech, now U of A Hope, where she received her Licensed Practical Nursing degree. She went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing and a Master’s Degree in Family Practice. She served as a nurse in the Prescott and Hope area for over twenty-five years before going to work as a nursing instructor for the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Nursing Program, formerly located on the U of A Hope campus, for eight years. Following her time teaching for UAMS, she went on to serve as the school nurse for Blevins Public Schools, where she worked up until she became very ill.
Mrs. Thompson was an enormous proponent of education, and she found her passion for caring for and helping others in nursing. Before she passed away, her children had the opportunity to talk with her about starting a scholarship to honor her legacy of caring and her example of the transformative power of education. She was very excited about the opportunity to help students in her memory. Upon her death, her family began funding the scholarship, and with the help of numerous friends, family, Blevins High School Alumni, and former students, they were able to endow the scholarship this fall.
Carrie Hirmer, Mrs. Thompson’s daughter, said, “My family is so incredibly humbled and thankful for all the support we received for our mother’s memorial scholarship. We know, without a doubt, that she is smiling down on us all. We are very excited to be able to help deserving students as we start giving out the scholarship this coming spring semester.”
“The UAHT Foundation is grateful that the family and friends of Mrs. Nina Nivens Thompson decided to honor her with this memorial endowment. She was a caring and beloved member of our community and campus family. This endowment will ensure her memory is honored, and her legacy is carried on to help prepare more caregiving professionals like her in the future,” said Anna Powell, UAHT Foundation Executive Director.
For more information about scholarships or the UAHT Foundation, please call 870-722-8516.