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KNOXVILLE — Knoxville Neonatal Associates is creating a fund to support University of Tennessee nursing students specializing in pediatrics.

Income from the $25,000 endowment will provide Knoxville Neonatal Associates Clinical Leadership Awards for nursing students in the master’s program. It also will be used for graduate nursing student-fellowships.

“In our desire to encourage future nursing students to specialize in pediatric nursing,” said Dr. Stephen Prinz of KNA. “The associates have chosen to create this endowment to recognize graduate nursing students for their leadership and academic merit.”

Nursing Dean Joan Creasia said the college has few resources with which to acknowledge students’ leadership abilities.

“This generous, multi-year gift from the Knoxville Neonatal Associates will reward students for their leadership activities on campus and within the community, Creasia said. “We are very grateful to the Associates for recognizing this need and making a difference in the lives of our nursing students.”

In addition to Prinz, Drs. William H. Wooldridge, Louden Nalle, John R. Howick, and John Q. Buchheit are the physicians in Knoxville Neonatal Associates, which for many years has been associated with East Tennessee Children’s Hospital.

The physicians work with more than 135 nurses, many of whom are graduates of the UT College of Nursing, Prinz said.