Eileen Ridgway Outreach Scholarship

Established in May 1996, the Dr. Eileen Ridgway Endowed Nursing Scholarship aims to kindle and fuel leadership development by encouraging student development in community outreach, service, and civic efforts. Dr. Eileen Ridgway served as the dean of the Seattle University College of Nursing from 1968-1977.

2023 Recipient

Daniela Acuna Aguirre, BSN '24

Daniela Acuna Aguirre BSN Student

Project: Increasing Resource Access for Spanish-Speaking Houseless and/or Sex Worker Clients at Aurora Commons

Background: Aurora Commons offers a dignified, safe, and welcoming space for unhoused people and sex workers who are involved in commercial sexual exploitation. The organization offers clients a place to rest, prepare a meal, receive access to health care, connect to resources, and collectively create a healthy and vibrant community. 

With various programs and support, Aurora Commons is strong with resource bridging. Social workers link clients to various resources: ORCA card for transportation, overnight shelters, establish a social security card, job search, legal counsel, and mailing address and collection options. Aurora Commons also offers communication resources via telephones, computers, and internet access.   

Their most important program is the SHE Clinic, made possible through a partnership with Harborview Medical Center. The clinic provides medical care to female-identified street-based sex workers and houseless females. This clinic is supported by the Department of Health, the City of Seattle, and the Pacific Hospital Preservation and Development Authority.

Project Overview and Goal: Aurora Commons offers a variety of resources and services, but a language barrier exists which creates a problem of increasing access to Spanish-speaking clients. When I started volunteering at Aurora Commons, I noticed a large Latino/Hispanic population that needed more help than other populations. This population needs translation from English to Spanish for most of their services. As Spanish is my native language and I have a background in medical terminologies, my volunteer work evolved to primarily translating for Spanish-speaking clients.

While Aurora Commons utilizes interpreters as much as possible, a stopgap measure to increase knowledge for Spanish-speaking clients is to translate as many available written resources. Having health pamphlets translated to Spanish is a necessity in shelters like Aurora Common where they have a big population of Spanish speakers. This project plans to translate as many documents as possible, especially the most frequently asked and used resources. 

Faculty Sponsor: Therry Eparwa, DNP, FNP-BC

This scholarship was created to inspire emulation of the work and visions of Dr. Ridgway; fueling leadership development through empowering student involvement in community outreach, service and civic efforts.

For more information

Peggy O’Boyle Fine, Director of Development

Current students should contact their program for more information about scholarship availability.

Graduate Student: dnp@seattleu.edu   

Undergraduate Students: CONadvising@seattleu.edu

Dr. Eileen Ridgway Outreach Scholarship