Online University Partnering with Sierra Providence Health Network to Offer Unique Degree Program Leading to RN Licensure Salt Lake City — Western Governors University, www.wgu.edu, is expanding its innovative B.S. in Nursing (Prelicensure) program to El Paso beginning August 1. The program, which is offered in partnership with local Sierra Providence Health Network hospitals, is the first online, competency-based bachelor’s degree program aimed at preparing students for initial licensure as registered nurses. Approved by the Texas Board of Nursing, the program is also operating in Dallas and Houston. Last year, WGU joined with state workforce agencies as well as healthcare institutions to develop an online, competency-based bachelor’s degree program in Nursing leading to RN licensure. The CCNE-accredited program combines WGU’s competency-based academic model with intensive clinical simulations and immersive clinical practice at partner hospitals, supervised by onsite clinical coaches serving as WGU adjunct faculty. “Despite a current and projected shortage of registered nurses, thousands of qualified applicants are turned away from nursing schools every year,” said Jan Jones-Schenk, WGU director of nursing. “This program is specifically designed for individuals who have prepared themselves academically for nursing school, but haven’t been able to enroll in a traditional program, either because of school capacity, or their own work and family obligations.” In addition to the Texas Workforce and Labor Development Agency, WGU has partnered with The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the U.S. Department of Labor, the California Nurse Education Initiative Workforce and Labor Development Agency, Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), Kaiser Permanente, Tenet Healthcare, Universal Health Services, Cedars Sinai Medical Center, and Catholic Healthcare West. For more information regarding this program, go to www.wgu.edu/rn or call 1-866-225-5948.