The Ontario government’s decision to give colleges the option to deliver stand-alone nursing degree programs will produce more qualified nurses to fill key shortages in many communities.
“This is terrific news for students and health-care professionals,” said Glenn Vollebregt, St. Lawrence College president and CEO. “It makes nursing more attractive to students who wish to study and pursue careers in their home communities.”
“We have a long history and exemplary reputation for delivering high quality nursing education,” Vollebregt said. “Our faculty have a minimum of a master’s degree, with half of our core faculty either having or working on their Ph.D. Today’s announcement recognizes that colleges are providing education at a degree level and is a testament to the quality and sustainability of the work being done across our province by college educators, staff, and industry and community partners.”
This decision will also create a more diverse nursing workforce that can respond more effectively to patients. The student population at colleges mirrors the general population and college is often the preferred post-secondary destination for first-generation students and Indigenous students.
St. Lawrence College offers nursing programs at its campuses in Kingston, Brockville, and Cornwall, and recently upgraded learning facilities to include modern, state-of-the-art technical training equipment and clinical simulation labs.
“This announcement is a tribute to the strength of our college programs,” Vollebregt said. “The top career choice of many of our graduates is in healthcare. SLC is known for our impact on our communities and we will continue to deliver the best possible nursing education.”