Two mid-Michigan educational institutions are cooperating to create a new dual enrollment program to get qualified nurses into the workforce faster.
Saginaw Valley State University
and Delta College
agreed on a dual enrollment initiative to allow nursing students to get a bachelor's degree as they pursue healthcare employment.
It will offer classes for associate's and bachelor's degrees concurrently, and offer some SVSU classes on the Delta College campus to make attendance easier. The first students in the program will earn an associate's degree from Delta College in spring 2016, and finish up a bachelor's degree at SVSU the following winter semester.
"Recently, there has been increased pressure to have more BSNs (nurses with bachelor's degrees) providing patient care," says Andrea Frederick, an SVSU assistant professor of nursing and coordinator of the initiative. "This is one intervention that will help our area to achieve that goal."
In the past, an associate-level degree such as an RN would be attained, then the new nurse would work in the field while still going to school to get their BSN, but that path is challenging for many to complete.
To ensure students meet academic standards, nursing students who enter the program are recruited through Delta College's Nurse Scholar program, which is limited to about 30 students each semester, based on academic criteria and related health care work experience.
Writer: Kim Eggleston
Source: Saginaw Valley State University