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Boise State Partners with Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center to Improve Patient Care

Boise State School of Nursing has partnered with Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise to provide a unique opportunity to nurses working for Saint Alphonsus.

Seven Registered Nurses with associate degrees who work for Saint Alphonsus are receiving a new scholarship to complete their bachelors degree in Boise State School of Nursing’s RN-BS Online/Distance Completion Track. The scholarship will cover tuition, electronic fees, and books for nursing courses for up to two years.

The RN-BS Online/Distance Completion Track was started in 2008 to help nurses with their associate degree earn their bachelor’s degree. The track currently has more than 700 students enrolled and has graduated more than 375 students.

Saint Alphonsus is the first healthcare organization in Idaho to develop a scholarship designed for registered nurses with associate degrees to pursue their baccalaureate degrees. In 2008, the Institute of Medicine and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation released a report, “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health,” that advocated for eighty percent of nurses to hold a bachelor’s degree by 2020. Baccalaureate nursing programs provide additional competencies in community and public health, gerontology, care coordination, and more that associate degree and diploma nursing programs do not include. These skills, as well as experience with technology, policy development, and organizational systems, are necessary as the healthcare environment becomes more and more complex.

In describing the reason behind starting the scholarship, Sherry Parks, vice president and chief nursing officer for patient care services for Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise said “Developing the nursing workforce for current and future needs requires strong partnerships between education and practice. We at Saint Alphonsus are excited to continue our collaborative relationship with Boise State School of Nursing and look forward to working together in providing new opportunities to advance nursing.”

“The scholarship enables students to achieve their academic dream of completing their bachelor’s degree at Boise State by decreasing their financial stress,” states Vivian Schrader, chair of the RN-BS Online/Distance Completion Track and the Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner and Doctor of Nursing Practice Programs. “Saint Alphonsus has confidence in the quality of our program.”