Harold & Lynne Ornes, WSU Faculty

“We want to help reduce the stress of funding an education so students can put more effort into their studies.”
Harold and Lynne Ornes have devoted their lives to teaching. Lynne has been a nurse for thirty years, and the need she recognized for teachers in healthcare fields encouraged her to become a health educator. Coming from several generations of teachers, Harold began his career teaching middle school science and moved on to teach life science courses at the university level.

Attracted to Winona State successful health and science education programs, the Orneses joined the university community in June 2008 – Harold as dean of the College of Science and Engineering, and Lynne as assistant professor in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences.

Their passion for health and education, along with their commitment to Winona State, has led the couple to establish the Harold and Lynne Ornes Scholarship. Their scholarship will be awarded each year to a WSU student from a diverse background to study in either the biology teaching or nursing program.

The Orneses see a need to increase diversity among health and education professionals. Because students and patients come from different experiences and backgrounds, effective educators and health care professionals need to reflect and understand shared experiences and backgrounds, said Harold.

Lynne said she has witnessed how cultural differences can often hinder access to healthcare. Together, they hope their scholarship will help bring a “broader set of cultural and personal experiences” to either the health or education field.

The Orneses understand the dedication – and financial commitment – it takes to earn a college degree, and they want to help make the journey easier for students. “We want to help reduce the stress of funding an education so students can put more effort into their studies,” said Lynne.

Harold added, “Many students have a job or a spouse and family. It’s a full-time job being a full-time student. Our desire is to alleviate some of those stressors and better enable someone to pursue an education.”

Faculty members Harold and Lynne Ornes established a scholarship in their belief that encouraging diverse students to earn a Winona State degree will make a difference in biology and nursing education. Imagine your own future, and make your hopes and dreams come true by supporting student scholarships.

Contact the WSU Foundation at: foundation@winona.edu, or call 507.457.5020.