National Nursing Week, held from May 6-12, is a celebration of nursing and the invaluable service nurses provide. May 6 is National Nurses Day and May 12 the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.
The Columbia College Nursing program has much to celebrate: established in 1995 on the main campus, the program was introduced at the Lake of the Ozarks, Mo., campus in 2005. Both campuses have thrived and the main campus program is moving.
The main campus' Nursing Program is currently housed in a small converted church on Eighth Street with only three simulated patient rooms, separated from the classroom by only curtains. When students are practicing, classes can’t be held. That will change later this summer as the program relocates to far more spacious quarters in the Federal Building on the corner of Eighth and Cherry streets in downtown Columbia.
Watch a video on the Columbia College nursing program.
Lynette Roebuck '09, recipient of the Georgia Kateman, RN Nursing Scholarship, is working as a nurse. She helps patients with spinal cord or head trauma injuries, or who have suffered from stroke or other debilitating illnesses or injuries, get on with life. She waited 20 years to become a nurse as she raised three children and taught second grade.
"Other than being a wife and a mom," Roebuck says, "this is the most rewarding thing I have ever done. Being able to help people become self-sufficient after suffering catastrophic illness or accident is rewarding beyond measure. And I have Columbia College's Nursing program to thank for helping me achieve my dream of becoming a nurse."
Graduates of the program are eligible to apply to the Missouri State Board of Nursing Licensure Examination to become a registered nurse (RN). Qualified faculty members foster a hands-on learning environment and create or enlarge partnerships with local healthcare employers to assist students after graduation. Many graduates of both the main and Lake campuses proceed directly into waiting jobs at hospitals and other facilities.
Nursing positions are among the top job openings nationwide; Columbia, Mo., with a very high concentration of hospitals, has nearly 4,000 RNs and Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), according to Nursingdegree.net. Nearly 1 in 6 people in Columbia were employed in the healthcare industry in 2007, according to the Columbia Daily Tribune. Further, a recent study shows that throughout the recession, while other jobs have been decreasing in positions and wages, the healthcare industry has been growing steadily.