Stephen Hoyle


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Michael Hoyle


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Jenna Nielsen


NCVAN Victim Service Practitioner Certification Academy Scholarships Opportunities

NCVAN Memorial Scholarship Program


NCVAN is pleased to announce the NCVAN Memorial Scholarship program.   Two scholarships will be awarded to two deserving victim advocates working in a recognized nonprofit victim service organization in North Carolina. Each scholarship will help defray costs associated with attending the next upcoming NCVAN Victim Service Practitioner Certification Academy.


The Memorial Scholarship covers the cost of certification along with one night of lodging for recipients who may require overnight accommodations. Note that while there is just one application for the scholarship, two will be awarded.


Each NCVAN Memorial Scholarship will be awarded in the memory of four much-loved North Carolinians whose lives ended because of homicide:


The Jenna and Ethen Nielsen Memorial Scholarship remembers Jenna and Ethen Nielsen, a mother and her unborn son. Jenna was 22 years old, a vibrant and loving wife, mother, daughter, and friend. She was weeks away from giving birth to her third son, to be named Ethen when she was murdered on the morning of June 14, 2007. Her murder was never solved. Jenna and Ethen’s deaths prompted lawmakers to enact “Ethen’s Law,” which allows that anyone who commits murder, manslaughter, or assault against a pregnant woman may also be found guilty of the same crimes against the baby she carries.


The Stephen and Michael Hoyle Memorial Scholarship remembers two brothers, four years apart. Stephen was a loving son and brother who enjoyed soccer and basketball in his youth and who was gaining experience in home-remodeling. He was murdered on January 26, 2012, when he was 24 years old. Michael was an energetic, fun-loving, and beautiful person also loved by his family and friends. He enjoyed scouts, basketball, and soccer and particularly enjoyed a vacation at the beach with his brother. Michael struggled to cope with his brother’s death. He ultimately died of an overdose of drugs at age 24, a little over four years after Stephen was killed.


Advocating for the loved ones of those who were murdered and other victims of violent crimes is heart work. It calls for a deep understanding of human experience. It also calls upon a skillset steeped in thorough training like the comprehensive series provided by NCVAN through the Victim Service Practitioner Certification Academy. See application for requirements.  Additional questions can be directed to NCVAN at janeallen@nc-van.org.


For non-profit advocates who wish to be considered for an NCVAN Memorial Scholarship, use the button below to apply.  If you are an advocate for the Prosecutor's Office, financial assistance may be available through the Conference of District Attorney's.