Not only did Irma Bitner create an endowment to support her passions today, she also made provisions in her estate plan to make a difference tomorrow.

Defining a legacy: Irma Bitner

August 13, 2020

Irma Bitner will never forget the education she earned at Bismarck Hospital School of Nursing, now NSDU School of Nursing.

Irma graduated the nursing school in 1957, and more than half a century later, continues to cherish her experience as a student. She knows from her own career that experiences – not just book learning – make the best nurses.

She wanted to give students the opportunity to travel and serve patients abroad. Not only did Irma create an endowment to give students experiences today, she also made provisions in her estate plan to support nurses tomorrow.


Why did you want to include Sanford in your estate plan?

I wanted to give to the NSDU School of Nursing, because it gave so much to me. I wanted to help students get ahead in their studies. I listened and found out the needs of the students and worked with the right people to make a difference in their lives.


What would you say to encourage others to consider this type of gift?

When I hear from the students, it feels worth it all. I love when I hear, “I couldn’t have done this without your help.” I know the students really appreciate it.


How was the process of finalizing your plan?

It was a very short process, and only took a couple of weeks for me to finalize my estate plan. I feel very comfortable knowing I have a plan in place, and I am confident Sanford would help me change the focus of my giving as different needs arose.


Ready to create or update your estate plan? 

Start by downloading our free estate planning guide at sanfordhealthfoundation.org/IWill. It’s a great resource to help think through your goals for the future.