Dec. 9, 2007 — David Beale, executive director of the Bennie and Martha Benjamin Foundation, visits both campuses of the University of the Virgin Islands this week as part of his annual trip to the territory.
Since 1992, the Bennie and Martha Benjamin Foundation has provided more than $1.5 million in scholarships and grants in support of improved medical care for the people of the Virgin Islands. The foundation generously supports philanthropic projects at UVI, at hospitals on St. Croix and St. Thomas, as well as at the Myrah Keating Smith Community Health Center on St. John.
On Monday, Dec. 10, Beale will tour UVIs new St. Thomas campus Administration and Conference Center at 10 a.m., followed by a reception with Bennie and Martha Benjamin Foundation scholarship recipients and their families.
Along with scholarship and equipment programs, Beale has said that nursing programs hold a special significance for him. At UVI , foundation support has funded the purchase of medical textbooks, computers and equipment.
During the 2005/2006 academic year the foundation donated $42,557.52 to upgrade lab furniture and equipment in UVIs Bachelor of Science in Nursing Education (BSN) programs nursing skills lab on the St. Thomas campus. The foundation also supported collaboration between UVIs Division of Nursing Education and the Schneider Regional Medical Center to provide summer externships for BSN students, and donated $6,625 to the Nurse Leadership Lecture Series. Since October 2006 the Bennie and Martha Benjamin Foundation has provided $36,000 in scholarships to UVI students who are pursuing health careers.
On Tuesday, December 11 at 2 p.m., Beale will meet with current students and graduates of the Student Nurse Extern Program at the Schneider Regional Medical Center. The Student Nurse Extern Program gives UVI nursing students who have completed their sophomore and junior level nursing courses an opportunity to participate in mentored relationships with practicing registered nurses at the Schneider Regional Medical Center on St. Thomas.
On Friday, Dec. 14 at 9 a.m.., Beale will meet with UVI Nursing Division faculty on UVIs St. Croix campus.
Claude A. "Bennie" Benjamin was born on St. Croix in 1907 and found success and fortune in New York as a songwriter for the likes of Nat King Cole, Patty Page, Perry Como and others. Benjamin died in 1989 and a memorial foundation to address health concerns in the territory was established at the direction of his will.
For more information on the Bennie and Martha Benjamin Foundation, please call Dr. Gloria Callwood at 693-1291 or email her at gcallwo@uviedu.
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