UMS Reports Higher Nursing Enrollment

Bangor Daily News (Bangor, ME), January 29, 2018 | Go to article overview

UMS Reports Higher Nursing Enrollment


ORONO -- The University of Maine System reported Jan. 29 that campuses are seeing increased enrollment in nursing programs, a result of the system's efforts to address a projected shortage of nurses.

Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Robert Neely reported to the University of Maine System Board of Trustees Jan. 29 that nursing enrollment in Maine's public universities is up 11 percent since the start of the decade. Total nursing enrollment has grown from 1,734 in 2010 to 1,920 in the fall of 2017 across all degree programs.

Maine Universities and partners are expanding pathways into Maine nursing careers following a statewide summit hosted by the University of Maine System and the Maine Department of Health and Human Services to address the expected nursing shortage.

While the expansion achieved within existing university programs and resources is welcome news, it will not be enough to pull Maine back from the nursing workforce cliff that has been projected to hit the state by the middle of the next decade.

Responding to the projection that Maine faces a nursing workforce shortage of 3,200 healthcare workers by the middle of the next decade, the University hosted a nursing workforce summit in October 2017 at UMaine with the Maine Department of Health and Human Services and in partnership with the Maine Nursing Action Coalition. The summit brought together more than a hundred leaders in healthcare, education and public policy to develop actionable steps that could increase Maine's nursing education capacity.

Neely updated trustees on a number of the tangible university and policy initiatives already underway as a result of the nursing summit. Examples of those initiatives include a collaboration between the University of Maine at Fort Kent is collaborating with the University of Maine at Presque Isle to launch a nursing program at UMPI starting in the fall of 2018. …

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