(WYTV) – A new partnership between Thiel College and Sharon Regional Medical Center hopes to bring more nurses to the Shenango Valley.
A liberal arts education and real-life experience with nursing rotations — Thiel College and Sharon Regional think that’s what future nursing students are looking for.
“These students will get both, the best of both in this bachelor’s in nursing program and RN program in partnership together,” said Susan Traverso, president of Thiel College.
Thiel College is now accepting and reviewing applications for 15 to 20 spots in the new program starting this fall. Students will earn a BSN from Thiel College and an RN from Sharon Regional’s nursing school.
Sharon Regional’s chief nursing officer, Michelle Reaser, reflected on her own experience getting an RN. She thinks the new program will fill a crucial gap.
“I didn’t have the ability to go to the collegiate school and have that four-year degree and play sports and do all the activities that, you know, your normal college students go through,” Reaser said.
The partners also hope the program will serve the greater Mercer County community.
In a report released in 2019, Pennsylvania’s auditor general said the state could be short 4,000 nurses by 2030.
Traverso thinks the COVID-19 pandemic has made the need for nurses even clearer.
“We certainly hope we don’t see something this severe again anytime soon but I think we’ve all learned the importance of having that backbone of public health, allied health professionals,” Traverso said.
Reaser hopes this program can bring a new generation of nurses to the Shenango Valley.
“Hopefully, it’s going to generate more nurses for our communities and we look forward to continuing to figure out ways that we can constantly support the health care field and the profession,” Reaser said.