Nov 8, 2011    #191
Contact: Wandra Brooks Green

UMKC Foundation prepares for Nov. 9 campaign launch, recognizes recent gifts

Donations support Nursing, Medicine and College of Arts and Sciences programs

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- As the UMKC Foundation prepares for its Nov. 9 campaign launch, the Foundation projects 2011-2012 to be its best fundraising year ever and recognizes three gifts that support the School of Nursing, School of Medicine and College of Arts and Sciences programs, respectively.

Hirsch RN-BSN Scholarship helps prepare nursing workforce

Bill and Irma Lou Hirsch have provided $100,000 for a scholarship to support four students per year in the UMKC School of Nursing's online RN-BSN program. The School of Nursing's online RN-BSN program is meeting a rising demand for baccalaureate-educated nurses, while allowing students flexibility in how they achieve their academic goals.

Course content throughout the track focuses on development of the professional role of the nurse as leader, manager, coordinator, advocate and designer of care. Instead of required bedside clinical hours, practicum involves leadership projects that meet community needs. Enrollment in the School of Nursing's RN-BSN program has increased by more than 200 percent in the last five years.

Irma Lou Hirsch is a member of the UMKC Foundation's Steering Committee, which was appointed to oversee the Foundation's ongoing fundraising campaign.

Dr. Marjorie Sirridge provides gift to support medical humanities

Former UMKC School of Medicine Dean Dr. Marjorie Sirridge and her late husband Dr. William Sirridge were instrumental in the establishment of the UMKC School of Medicine in 1971. They were two of the founding docents at the School of Medicine and helped to develop the curriculum, the role of the docents (the mentoring physicians) and the commitment to clinical excellence in teaching that has been emulated by other medical schools across the nation.

In 1992, Dr. Marjorie and Dr. William Sirridge contributed a significant gift to establish the Sirridge Office of Medical Humanities and Bioethics -- one of the first such programs in the nation. The importance of humanism and ethics in medicine is now considered an essential educational component for training future physicians. In 2011, Dr. Marjorie Sirridge made a gift of $125,000 to advance and sustain the contributions that the Sirridge Office of Medical Humanities and Bioethics makes to the medical education of UMKC physicians.

Students are required to take at least one course in Medical Humanities and may take others as electives. Courses have included Medicine and War; Medicine and Literature; and Medicine and Art. These courses help future physicians understand the experience of being a patient as well as a physician, leading to more empathy in caring for patients.

Dr. Linda Hood Talbott provides $250,000 gift

Dr. Linda Hood Talbott, a UMKC alumna, has committed more than $250,000 in current and planned gifts to support scholarships and leadership awards in the College of Arts and Sciences and Bloch School's entrepreneurship program. The gifts also support awards for excellence in the performing arts at the Conservatory of Music and Dance, UMKC’s Department of Theatre and Kansas City Repertory Theatre, as well as scholarships for urban education and research in the School of Education.

Talbott is chairman of the Center for Philanthropic Leadership and president of Talbott & Associates, philanthropic management consultants to individuals, foundations, companies and non-profit organizations. She also is a member of the UMKC Foundation's Steering Committee. Since its formation in July of 2009, the UMKC Foundation has received 95,172 gifts and pledges from 27,867 donors.

About the UMKC Foundation

The UMKC Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization serving as the official fundraising and fundraising management organization for UMKC. For more information about the UMKC Foundation, visit

About the University of Missouri-Kansas City

The University of Missouri-Kansas City, one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 15,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience. For more information about UMKC, visit You can also find us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and watch us on YouTube.

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This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).


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