For better or for worse, there is more than one way to become a nurse. And while this ought to be cause for celebration — especially when there is such a shortage of nurses — it is more often the cause of conflict. Community colleges and universities frequently clash over state funds, the value of their graduates, and who better serves the market. Now, in a growing trend, some states are realigning their two- and four-year nursing programs to encourage more collaboration and fewer obstacles toward earning an advanced degree.
Last week, the Foundation for California Community Colleges announced the recipients of a grant that, through collaboration between two- and four-year programs, will help develop a new model for nursing education in the state. Though community colleges provide the lion’s share of new registered nurses in California — about 70 percent — there is a growing need for highly trained and specialized nurses who hold at least a bachelor’s degree. This new collaborative program is being developed among 50 of the state’s 130 nursing schools: at a number of community colleges, select California State University campuses and a few private colleges. Read full story, (Inside Higher Ed)