Southeast Department of Nursing Awarded Four-Year Nursing Workforce Grant for Accelerated, Online Programs

The Department of Nursing at Southeast Missouri State University has been awarded funds from the Missouri Foundation for Health to educate nursing students through an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program, and to promote retention in the accelerated BSN, online RN-to-BSN and traditional (4-year) BSN programs.  The $475,662 grant will underwrite critical nursing education programs and allow the Department of Nursing to implement an integrated tutoring and skill building support program to improve nursing student retention.  Dr. Marcia Hobbs, Chairperson of the Department of Nursing, will serve as the Project Director for the four year initiative.

“We know that the accelerated 2nd degree BSN program meets the needs of many in our region, and the funds from MFH will allow us to educate more nursing students through this successful program,” said Dr. Hobbs.

“We are also excited about providing expanded opportunities for success in all of our BSN programs such as tutoring and professional enhancement seminars.”

According to the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center, nursing job vacancies are projected to swell to over 22,000 positions in Missouri alone by 2012 – with over half of these representing new job openings (not replacement vacancies created by worker mobility or retirement).  The goal of the Missouri Foundation for Health’s Health Care Workforce Development funding program is to reduce the current and predicted shortages of health care workers and professionals. Programs funded under this initiative support the recruitment of youth into health careers, the education and training of medical students and the recruitment of medical workers and professionals into college and medical school faculty positions.

“Being able to access appropriate medical care is crucial in improving the health of Missouri residents, but it cannot happen without an adequate health care workforce,” said Dr. James R. Kimmey, MFH’s president and CEO.  “Like much of the state, southeast Missouri faces a workforce shortage in many areas of health care, including nursing. Southeast Missouri State University’s efforts, with the help of our grant, will begin to address that shortage and improve health care services in the area.”

Southeast’s baccalaureate nursing program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and has full approval by the State of Missouri through the Missouri State Board of Nursing.  In addition, graduates from Southeast nursing program have a high first-time success rate in passing the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

For information on the accelerated BSN and other nursing programs at Southeast, visit the Department of Nursing website at http://www.semo.edu/nursing/.

Funding for this project was provided in part by The Missouri Foundation for Health.  The Missouri Foundation for Health is a philanthropic organization whose vision is to improve the health of the people in the communities it serves.