The nursing department at El Camino College near Torrance has received a $2.6 million grant to provide scholarships for students in financial need.

Roughly $650,000 will be awarded in scholarships each academic year for four years through this program.

"The scholarships provided by this grant will ease the financial burden and enable eligible students to concentrate more fully on their nursing studies, which will, in turn, improve student success," said Terri Kyle, El Camino College director of nursing.

The grant is part of the Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students Program, established via the Disadvantaged Minority Health Improvement Act of 1990. The purpose of the program is to increase diversity in the health professions and nursing workforce by providing grants to eligible health professions and nursing schools for use in awarding scholarships to financially needy students from underrepresented backgrounds.

El Camino College and the nursing program will continue to recruit students from underrepresented minority groups as well as continue to provide support to help them graduate and succeed. Students will have access to the college's programs that work to ensure academic success, and ultimately graduation and completion of the program.

Over the past five years, the El Camino College nursing program has graduated 413 students; the majority of those graduates obtained registered nurse jobs in the area.