St. Catherine University receives legacy grant from GHR Foundation

Nursing students

The grant, to be used over a five-year period, will be applied to the creation of a new and scalable clinical education model as well as innovations in course offerings and classroom instruction in the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health.

Legacy Grant from the GHR Foundation


St. Catherine University President ReBecca Koenig Roloff ’76, MBA, announced today that the University has received a $5 million legacy grant from Minneapolis-based GHR Foundation. This gift builds on the legacy and strengths of the University’s Henrietta Schmoll School of Health (HSSH) with a strategy for a distinct, transformative health education experience that prepares practice-ready leaders in the rapidly changing health field.

The grant, to be used over a five-year period, will be applied to the creation of a new and scalable clinical education model as well as innovations in course offerings and classroom instruction in the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health, named in honor of St. Catherine University alumna and GHR co-founder, Henrietta Schmoll Rauenhorst. It also supports a university-wide inclusive excellence initiative.

“One reason why St. Kate’s has consistently been recognized as a leader in health education is that our founders and past leaders never accepted the status quo,” said Roloff. “The ‘dear neighbor’ we serve today is part of a diverse population, living in an increasingly global and complex world; the clinical and fieldwork environment that tomorrow’s health professionals will work in is what we need to train for today. Our gratitude and excitement about the generosity of this GHR grant is as enormous as the impact it will have on the next generation of health leaders.”

“We are so pleased to be a part of supporting the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health,” said Amy Rauenhorst Goldman, GHR Foundation CEO and Chair. “St. Kate’s plays an incredibly formative role in shaping students today, as it did for GHR’s co-founder – my mother – Henrietta Schmoll Rauenhorst. We look forward to celebrating the many graduates who will benefit from its tremendous education and give back to our world in valuable ways.”

Evolving and innovating within the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health

Entering its second decade as the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health, the University will apply funds from this grant to reimagine the School’s value proposition, enhance classroom learning, refine hands-on experiential opportunities and further innovate the high-quality health education delivered in HSSH. One key attribute of this is a hybrid system of scholarship development and strategic partnerships that support students from admission to vocation, with a strong emphasis on career development throughout the student experience. This combined education and support is what continues to place St. Kate’s graduates in high demand in the workplace.

Delivering healthcare in community

In response to growing demand for hands-on learning, the school of health will expand its partnerships in the field to create a singular, transformative, and situated-learning experience. This new approach will strengthen student understanding of an ecological approach to health, enhance interprofessional skills, and develop knowledge of how to meet the social, cultural, and linguistic needs of patients. This also includes integrating the undergraduate and graduate social work programs into HSSH, which will further deepen the School’s reputation as a leader in collaborative, interprofessional health education.

Embracing University-wide inclusive excellence

With this grant, HSSH will broaden its embrace of inclusive excellence, a key priority in the University’s strategic plan, to lead not just in “healthcare,” but in “health.” This approach gives students direct knowledge and experience working across languages and cultures and is rooted in the liberal arts foundation of each degree program offered at St. Kate’s. Students marry their cultural knowledge with critical thinking and ethical action to deepen the classroom and experiential learnings. This develops graduates who are well-prepared to serve individual patients and families within traditional healthcare systems and are empowered to impact societal health at the policy, community, and institutional levels.

“This gift allows us to continue our strong tradition of innovation in health education while further differentiating our student experience from that of our competitors,” said Lisa Dutton, Interim Dean of Health Sciences in the School of Health. “This approach will help improve societal health and well-being by preparing caring and compassionate professionals for practice in diverse and dynamic environments. That, in turn, will create a lasting impact on the systems in which they will work and those whom our graduates serve.”