CARBONDALE (WSIL) -- Hundreds of new nurses are expected to join the workforce from SIU after going through its brand new nursing program.
The School of Health Sciences at SIU says the new nursing program allows students to have a wide background of coursework.
"The nursing students have access to work with other students in other similar programs such as healthcare management, occupational physical therapy assistance, radiology students, dental health students, counseling, speech students," explains Kelli Whittington, director of the SIU nursing program.
The program itself has three different tracks:
- A traditional four year program
"When they get into that third year, that's when it gets really exciting because they'll be in the clinical setting, so they'll have some classroom settings, some lab settings, and then they'll also be in those clinical aspects."
2. A program for nurses who have an associate degree
"But they want to come back and get that bachelor's degree that makes them a little more marketable in the region and it also helps them with--again with that clinical judgement piece that I mentioned earlier. So that will be completely online."
3. and an accelerated track.
"Individuals with this will have 70 to 80 hours toward a degree or another bachelor's degree in another field and they'll come into a very intense 12 month program."
Whittington says this curriculum will have a lifelong impact.
"Not only will they have the knowledge-base they need to function as a registered nurse, but some of those skills they'll learn not only in the clinical world but in that preceptor time, will allow them to function, I'd like to say they'll be able to hit the ground running as a registered nurse."
Whittington says this program could help the region's nursing shortage.