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UH NURSING CONSORTIUM AGREES TO ESTABLISH A STATEWIDE UNDERGRADUATE NURSING CURRICULUM BY FALL 2008

UH Statewide Nursing FacuUniversity of Hawai‘i nursing faculty from across the state recently met to kick off the Statewide Nursing Education Consortium, dedicated to reinventing the nursing education offered at Hawai‘i, Kapi‘olani, Kauai and Maui Community Colleges, UH Hilo, and UH Mānoa.  The consortium made a commitment to increasing: the number of nurses required to meet the changing health care needs of the people of Hawai‘i; efficiency in educational preparation of nurses; and access to nursing education throughout the state.  UH nursing faculty, the pipeline for Hawai‘i’s future nurses, are moving forward with an initiative to establish a standard, statewide curriculum for nurses at the associate and baccalaureate levels by Fall 2008.

“As the only publicly supported nursing education institution in the state, we recognize our responsibility and are optimistic that the public sector will work with us to provide the resources required for nursing workforce development,” said Mary Boland, Dean of Nursing at UH Mānoa.

This initiative will enable campuses to offer an education program that is designed to better meet the health needs of Hawai‘i's citizens, provide students on all the islands with flexible pathways, and address the state’s current nursing shortage by allowing more students to enroll.

“The consortium agreed that a statewide curriculum is much needed and will prepare students with the competencies to address the rapidly changing health care needs of our population,” said Lois Magnussen, Interim Associate Dean of the School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene at UH Mānoa.  “It is an exciting effort that will involve moving from traditional teaching to student-centered and simulated learning approaches.”

Currently, the university offers an associate degree in nursing at four community colleges and a baccalaureate degree in nursing at UH Mānoa and UH Hilo.  Nursing students who graduate from the community colleges and decide to attain further education normally have to reapply at either of the upper-division campuses and continue with their studies. With the proposed curriculum, all students will take standard pre-requisite courses during their first year.  The second year of the curriculum will be the same at all campuses.  The third year of study marks a decision point for students in the program when they will  be given the option to exit the program with an associate degree, or to complete a bachelor’s degree with a fourth year of study.  

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