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Open house set in Jamestown on nursing program partnership

LRSC announces a nursing program partnership with Sanford Health.

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Lake Region State College (LRSC) announces the addition of an industry partner to its nursing apprenticeship program. Sanford Health will offer nurse apprenticeships as a career advancement opportunity for its employees.

More health care providers are considering nursing apprenticeships as an opportunity to strengthen workforce numbers, which spurred LRSC to research offering nurse apprenticeships. Early in 2021, the North Dakota Board of Nursing approved nurse apprentices as an innovative educational model/approach.

“We are so excited for our partnership with the Lake Region State College nursing program,” said Theresa Larson, vice president of nursing and clinical services. “This will provide an opportunity for our employees to achieve their nursing career goals. Opportunities like this not only enhance our employees’ contributions to our organization, but provide a feeling of fulfillment and purpose for them.”

LRSC will hold an informational open house session in Jamestown from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, June 24, at Sanford Jamestown Clinic, 300 2nd Ave. NE.

    “Achieving career goals and furthering education can often be a difficult thing to do when you need to be able to provide for yourself or your family, so this partnership will open a lot of doors for our employees who are longing to achieve higher goals in their nursing careers,” said Melodi Krank, senior director of nursing, Sanford Health Network.

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    In the LRSC apprenticeship model, the student can “earn while they learn,” said Karen Clementich, director of LRSC’s Nursing Program.

    The practical nurse program is three semesters and starts every fall semester. Lake Region State College offers a mobility option where theory is online with lab and clinical at certain times during the semester (for a total of 10 to 12 days per semester) on campus or at a clinical site, she said.

    Clementich said students also have a face-to-face option at LRSC Nursing sites in Devils Lake, Grand Forks and Mayville.

    The apprenticeship has ground rules agreed upon with the employer that provides a structured wage, set step increases and opportunity for continued employment at the completion of the apprenticeship.

    The combination of academic program requirements plus the apprenticeship (on-the-job learning, a mentor relationship with a staff nurse and eventually a Department of Labor certificate of completion) provides a rigorous base that socializes students to the nursing profession and prepares them for an in-demand and challenging career, officials said.

    Those eligible to enroll in the Sanford Health apprenticeship program will have tuition, fees and other materials covered by Sanford Health. Employees who are working as a nurse assistant or medical assistant will maintain their current rate of pay while they work during their studies. Employees who are not a medical or nursing assistant will be trained to be a nursing assistant and then work and be compensated in that role.

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