MGIS Awards Missouri Nurse with Second Annual Dale Brunken Student Loan Repayment Award
SALT LAKE CITY, Sept. 29, 2020 — MGIS, a leading national insurance program manager that builds and manages specialized insurance programs for healthcare professionals, today announced Amy Shepherd, a certified nurse assistant from Missouri, as the winner of its $15,000 second annual Dale Brunken Memorial Student Loan Payment Award.
The Dale Brunken Student Loan Payment Award is named for the man who founded MGIS 50 years ago to serve the disability insurance needs of healthcare professionals. His son, Jeff Brunken took over as president 30 years ago and today leads MGIS as a national innovator within the $20 billion disability insurance industry.
“This is one of the programs I am most proud of in the three decades I’ve spent at MGIS,” says Jeff Brunken, president, MGIS. “It was such a great experience in its inaugural year that we decided to increase the award amount by fifty percent. This program is a way I can honor my father’s legacy and give back to the healthcare professionals that work incredibly hard each and every day helping others. Amy’s story was nothing but inspirational and we couldn’t be more excited to provide her with the funds to help repay her student loan debt.”
The Dale Brunken Award centers on providing relief to hard-working healthcare professionals that are in debt due to their education. According to the National Student Nurses’ Association, more than 70% of students use nursing student loans to help pay for their education and found percentages of ADN (Associate Degree in Nursing) RNs (Registered Nurse) and BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) RNs with as much as $80,000 in student debt. Additionally, EducationData.org reports the average debt among medical school graduates is $241,600.
Amy Shepherd was nominated by friend and broker Brandi Martin who noted, “Amy’s husband, Lou, was a college athlete but one day fell ill and never fully recovered. The remainder of Lou’s life was spent going to dialysis and later battling cancer. He passed away July 20, 2018. I am nominating Amy because she not only took care of her husband, she raised three kids and went back to school to pursue a nursing career…all at the same time. Her fear was that Lou’s kidney condition was hereditary and she was determined to provide her family with the best care possible. Not once did I hear Amy complain about being tired or broke (or complain about anything, for that matter) she just continued to work toward her goal of becoming a nurse.”
“When I learned I had won, I was incredibly speechless as I didn’t even know I was nominated,” says Amy Shepherd, certified nurse assistant in Blue Springs, MO. “The award was enough to wipe out all of my student loan obligations and I am incredibly overwhelmed with gratitude.” When asked what she’ll be able to do without her burdensome student loan debt, she notes, “I plan to take my youngest son on some trips he wasn’t able to experience after his father passed away.”