UJ partners with regional healthcare providers to offer new nursing programs

May 17, 2024

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Nursing students work with IV equipment.

Accelerated nursing programs aim to address local nursing shortages UJ partners with regional providers to offer new nursing programs

The University of Jamestown announces a partnership with Sanford Health, the largest rural healthcare system in the country, along with other regional healthcare providers. The unique partnership aims to educate aspiring nurses locally.

Through the partnership, UJ will offer essential education opportunities, including an Associate of Science in Nursing and a Direct-Entry Master of Science in Nursing, online and at their new innovative learning center in Fargo. These accelerated programs do not require any prior healthcare experience, allowing prospective nurses the opportunity to pursue flexible education, balance work and school commitments, and benefit the healthcare system with their training.

By making these programs available in conjunction with local hospitals, University of Jamestown president Dr. Polly Peterson said UJ will be able to better prepare the next generation of nurses, address the pressing nursing shortage, and contribute to the long-term sustainability and well-being of local communities.

“We are delighted to be supporting Sanford Health and the Fargo community by providing access to such important programs,” said Dr. Peterson. “With this vital partnership, we can actively address the dire need for nurses by offering online access to education in our communities.”

UJ was one of 25 organizations chosen to receive funding from the Department of Labor’s Nursing Expansion Grant Program. This grant facilitated

Theresa Larson speaks into a microphone during a press conference.
Theresa Larson, MSN, BSN, RN, chief nursing officer at Sanford Health Fargo, speaks during the May 17 press conference

the establishment of UJ’s cutting-edge learning center in collaboration with Sanford Health, where students can complete their in-person learning requirements.

“Sanford Health is committed to supporting initiatives aimed at relieving the workforce challenges many hospitals are facing,” said Theresa Larson, MSN, BSN, RN, chief nursing officer at Sanford Health Fargo. “By nurturing the future caregivers of our communities, we are not only shaping health care; we are enriching the lives of those we serve and their families.”

In a time when rural communities are feeling the strain of nursing shortages, this initiative offers students the chance to earn their degrees and promptly launch their nursing careers in regional health care systems. Over the span of the three-year grant, more than 200 newly trained nurses are expected to be working within local communities.

“Our goal has always been to make nursing education more accessible, and with this partnership, we can,” said Dr. Paul Olson, provost at the University of Jamestown. “We look forward to seeing the impact these students will make within our local communities in the coming years.”

The first cycle of students can enroll for Fall 2024. More information about the program can be found online at degrees.uj.edu.


About the University of Jamestown: University of Jamestown is ranked as a “Best Regional University” in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report. Established as Jamestown College in 1883, UJ is a private, Christian, liberal arts university granting Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, and Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees as well as master’s degrees in Business, Education, Leadership, and Clinical Counseling. Doctoral degrees are available in Leadership, Physical Therapy, Clinical Research. University of Jamestown Accelerated, UJ’s online division, is based in Phoenix and delivers intensive upskilling opportunities to learners in a variety of settings. For more information, please visit UJ.edu.

About Sandford Health: Sanford Health, the largest rural health system in the United States, is dedicated to transforming the health care experience and providing access to world-class health care in America’s heartland. Headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, the organization serves 1.4 million patients and nearly 200,000 health plan members across 250,000 square miles. The integrated health system has 45 hospitals, 211 clinic locations, more than 160 Good Samaritan Society senior living centers, 2,900 Sanford physicians and advanced practice providers, 540 active clinical trials, and nine world clinic locations around the globe. Learn more about Sanford Health’s commitment to shaping the future of rural health care across the lifespan at sanfordhealth.org or Sanford Health News.

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