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Jim Gillen Athletic Educational Scholarship

Jim and Terri Gillen are committed to helping shape the futures of young athletes who have been impacted by catastrophic injuries.

Jim and Terri Gillen at Craig Hospital
Jim and Terri Gillen at Craig Hospital

Jim and Terri Gillen along with the support from their close family, friends, and Denver Nugget athletes have established the Jim Gillen Athletic Educational Scholarship for Craig Alumni seeking to supplement a small portion of your collegiate financial needs. This scholarship, a subset of the Craig Hospital Alumni Educational Scholarship Fund, recognizes Jim’s commitment to the development of young athletes and celebrates his post-stroke recovery.

About Craig Hospital

Craig Hospital is a world-renowned hospital and research center specialized in the care of people who have sustained a spinal cord and/or a brain injury. Located in Englewood, Colo., Craig is a 93-bed, private, nonprofit care facility providing a comprehensive system of inpatient and outpatient medical care, rehabilitation, neurosurgical rehabilitative care, and long-term follow-up services. Half of Craig's patients come from outside of Colorado. Craig has been ranked as a top-10 rehabilitation center by U.S. News & World Report for 32 consecutive years.

About Jim

Jim Gillen retired after 23 years with the Denver Nuggets as the Head Athletic Trainer, having never missed a game or practice. Not quite ready to step away from the sport he loved, Jim decided to continue his love of training by working with young athletes at Metro State University.

As he neared retirement, Jim was looking forward to traveling, attending his grandkids' games, fishing, playing golf, and spending time with his family.

But in June 2017, Jim sustained a brain injury after experiencing an ischemic stroke of the left hemisphere. The man who once walked 10 miles a day, laughed often, had a contagious smile and quick wit was paralyzed on the right side and could not talk.

According to Terri, the staff and doctors at Craig Hospital never ever gave up on Jim. He learned to walk, talk, and most importantly, to be able to enjoy his family and friends.

Today, Jim is thriving and doing great. He is back to walking close to ten miles a day, traveling, and enjoys spending time with his grandkids, friends, and family. Daily Jim keeps at his PT work and continues to make incredible strides in gaining back much of his life.

Jim is thrilled and excited to support young athletes to continue their educational aspirations. Both Jim and Terri feel that Craig Hospital is like family to them. Jim believes in you and wants you to be encouraged as you begin or return to seeking your dreams.

Craig Hospital is where one door closes and another door opens. Jim is one of the thousands touched by the doctors and nurses who have dedicated their lives to helping people live full and meaningful lives.

Terri Gillen

About the Jim Gillen Sports Scholarship Award

Current or former Craig Hospital patients (“graduates”), ages 17-25 are invited to apply for a scholarship for post-secondary, degree-seeking education expenses.

To be eligible, applicants must have:

  • Participated in club, high school, or college athletics
  • Sustained a traumatic injury and rehabbed at Craig Hospital
  • Enrolled (or will be enrolling) in college classes leading to a certificate or degree.
  • Planned on receiving a sports scholarship offer but are no longer eligible due to this injury (at least one of your two letters of recommendation needs to support this)

Applicants will submit a Craig Hospital Alumni Educational Scholarship Application and one letter of recommendation from a coach or athletic mentor, validating their athletic scholarship potential. The due date is Friday, April 16, 2022. Applications will be reviewed by The Craig Alumni Education Scholarship Committee each spring.

Applicants who do not receive funds from the Jim Gillen Athletic Scholarship will automatically be considered for the Craig Hospital Alumni Educational Scholarship.