GCC partners with BC3 to offer new nursing degree

Grove City College and Butler County Community College are partnering to create a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program that offers students the best that both higher education institutions have to offer.

Grove City College President Paul J. McNulty ’80 and Butler County Community College President Dr. Nicholas C. Neupauer announced the partnership today.

Students in the program, which will be offered through Grove City College’s newly established Charles Jr. and Betty Johnson School of Nursing, will benefit from an excellent liberal arts and sciences education from Grove City College and accredited, high quality technical and clinical professional training through Butler County Community College.

“Nursing is a rewarding and fulfilling career that many students are interested in pursuing. There is also a pressing need for more and better trained professionals in the field. This partnership with Butler County Community College allows us to meet the needs of students and society,” McNulty said. “We are blessed to have a neighbor like BC3 that allows us the opportunity to better serve our students, our community and the common good.”

“This collaboration speaks to the power of BC3 and community colleges as a whole,” Neupauer said. “These are unique times. Collaboration is the key. And when a college like ours can partner with a nationally recognized institution like Grove City, it speaks volumes. Even better yet is that both institutions are addressing a high-priority occupational need like nursing.”

“We couldn’t be more excited,” Neupauer noted.

BSN students will live on the campus of Grove City College, where they will attend classes in the first and fourth years of the program. In the second and third years they’ll attend classes at both institutions, with formal nursing classes and professional placement through BC3’s Shaffer School of Nursing and Allied Health. At the end of the third year, students will take state exams and are expected to begin working in the field as they complete their fourth year. Grove City College will offer flexible and online classes to allow students to “earn while they learn.”

Grove City College plans to begin offering the BSN degree to incoming freshmen in the fall of 2020. BC3 plans an $18 million project that includes the $12 million Victor K. Phillips Nursing and Allied Health Building that will house the Shaffer School of Nursing and Allied Health.

Nursing is one of the most in-demand professions in the nation, with nurses needed most in the home care, long-term care, outpatient and rehabilitation settings. That need is expected to grow in the coming years and decades. By 2022, the need for nurses will increase by 19 percent and by 2025 the number of RN vacancies will surpass 1.2 million, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration.

Prospective students are aware of that demand and are looking for degree programs that will put them on track to fill those vacancies and advance their careers in the health care sector. The joint BSN program will educate health care professionals who can attend to patients and their families in a compassionate, holistic and ethical way, McNulty said.

The Charles Jr. and Betty Johnson School of Nursing, initially funded by a $1 million gift from Jayne Johnson Rathburn and the Rathburn Family Foundation in memory and honor of her parents, is being established at Grove City College for BSN students. Mrs. Betty Johnson was a nurse. An additional multi-million-dollar estate gift from Mrs. Rathburn will go toward providing nursing scholarships.

“Grove City College is enormously grateful for Mrs. Rathburn’s generous gift and the opportunity it provides to fulfill our mission,” McNulty said.

For more about Grove City College, visit www.gcc.edu/futurestudents.

GCC partners with BC3 to offer new nursing degree

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