News & Events

Grant will Fund Hartwick's Accelerated Nursing Program

June 22, 2009

The Appalachian Regional Commission has approved a grant of more than $73,000 for Hartwick College's Strengthening the Rural Nursing Workforce project. The funding will go to create a new, flexible nursing program for area adults that will help alleviate the nursing shortage in upstate New York.

"We are delighted that by awarding this grant, the Appalachian Regional Commission has recognized Hartwick College's longstanding commitment to high-quality, innovative, community-sensitive nurse education," said President Dr. Margaret L. Drugovich. "By offering a flexible nurse education option for local women and men, the Accelerated Nursing Program at Hartwick College program will help to recruit nursing students to the area, and encourage them to remain here as they pursue their careers. The program will address the local nursing shortage, which currently is worse than in other parts of the state and predicted to become more severe in the coming years. Hartwick is proud to be on the forefront of addressing these problems, which are so critical for all of us living in the area."

The project will serve Delaware, Otsego, and Schoharie counties in the northern Appalachian sub-region of upstate New York. In terms of access to healthcare, only 13.3% of the population has had a physical exam in the past two years and 6.5% reported that they could not access medical care when they needed it in the past year.

Estimates indicate that the demand for RNs in the state will exceed supply by at least 37,000 by 2015. New York State would need to graduate an additional 4,200 nurses annually to eliminate the projected shortfall.

Hartwick's program will initially recruit ten students per year, who will then complete a bachelor's degree in nursing in just 18 months. The funding is this project will support the hiring of additional faculty, acquisition of equipment, and initial implementation. Once underway, the project expects to gain 25 students per year and become self-sufficient.

Hartwick College is coordinating its project with the county planning departments, Bassett Healthcare, and SUNY IT. The program will strengthen partnerships between the College's Department of Nursing with healthcare organizations and nursing graduate degree programs throughout the Southern Tier and Central Region of upstate New York.

Hartwick's Department of Nursing will work with the State Department of Education and partner with the graduate degree program at SUNY IT to provide courses in the senior level baccalaureate curriculum that can be applied toward graduate education.

"Right now there is a disturbing nursing shortage across the state that threatens the health of our families," said U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer. "This grant not only creates a project to put nurses in the field but also stimulates economic growth. Hartwick College is making a wise investment here and I will do everything I can to get more funding for these kinds of programs that increase the number of nurses in New York."

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Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,480 students, located in Oneonta, NY in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick's expansive Liberal Arts in Practice curriculum merges traditional liberal arts study, personalized teaching, and experiential learning approaches to emphasize Connecting the Classroom to the World. Add to that a wide range of off-campus internships, collaborative research, study-abroad opportunities, and a unique January Term, and Hartwick prepares students for the world ahead. Strong financial aid and scholarship programs keep a Hartwick education affordable.

Contact: Christopher Lott
Phone: 607-431-4030