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Grossmont College, Point Loma Nazarene Team Up To Offer 4-Year Nursing Degree

Nursing students work on a computerized medical mannequin at Grossmont Community College, April 2014.
Susan Murphy
Nursing students work on a computerized medical mannequin at Grossmont Community College, April 2014.

Nursing students at Grossmont College will be able to take classes at the El Cajon campus for four years and graduate with a degree from Point Loma Nazarene University under a deal the schools announced Friday.

Under the terms of the four-year agreement, students who earn their associate's degree at Grossmont will be able to complete their bachelor's requirements with an additional 15 months of classes.

A state pilot program that will allow community colleges to offer four-year degrees in certain academic areas does not include nursing, according to the schools.

The Grossmont-Point Nazarene program will help address a need for further education for the region's nurses, school officials said.

Tuition for the 25 students who enter the program each semester will be $16,200, which pays for the entire 15 months of instruction and includes the cost of books, according to Grossmont College. A university adviser will be stationed full time at Grossmont College to provide scholarship information and enrollment assistance.

"It is a wonderful opportunity for our graduates to benefit from Point Loma university's excellent nursing program,'' Grossmont College President Sunita "Sunny'' Cooke said.

"As more and more healthcare institutions begin requiring four-year degrees from their ranks of registered nurses, it is getting tougher for students to get into university nursing programs, so this is a huge benefit for our students to be able to seamlessly transfer and quickly obtain their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree,'' Cooke said.

Point Loma Nazarene University President Bob Brower said the program will combine online courses with traditional classroom instruction.

"Our model is a hybrid model, so there will be both face-to-face and online learning, which will help assist you in completion of this very innovative 15-month program," Brower said.

Grossmont currently offers a four-semester nursing program that includes related science courses, and practical experience in area hospitals and health agencies. Students who complete the program can transfer to San Diego State University to complete their bachelor's degree.

By comparison, the Point Loma deal will allow the students to finish out their studies at the Grossmont campus.

"I think that it's going to be amazing to continue on here, where I felt supported and successful, and I've had just an amazing experience these last two years," said Poppy Miller, a Grossmont College nursing student.

The position of registered nurse is regularly included in lists of high-demand jobs. According to the Campus Explorer website, around 711,000 registered nurses will be needed over the next decade, with a typical starting salary of more than $64,000.

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