Last Updated on December 7, 2021 by YGK News Staff
St. Lawrence College has received approval from the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities and College of Nurses of Ontario to begin a stand-alone Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (BScN). The college welcomed the first cohort of new nursing students in September this year.
The official announcement about the program was made today during an official visit by Jill Dunlop, Minister of Colleges and Universities, to St. Lawrence College on Friday, Oct. 15. Glenn Vollebregt, President and CEO of St. Lawrence College, and Dr. Barb Le Blanc, St. Lawrence College’s Dean of Health and Wellness, were also present at the occasion.
“This is an important day for St. Lawrence College and for postsecondary education in Ontario,” Minister Dunlop said.
Last year under the new policy changes, the Ontario Government allowed colleges and universities to offer stand-alone degree programs in nursing.
The previous policy of collaborative nursing program has been in place since 2000, which required institutions to partner to offer programs for registered nursing. Previously, only Queen’s University and the University of Toronto offered independent nursing programs in Ontario, and the remaining institutions ran programs in collaboration.
Minister Dunlop said that by allowing colleges and universities to have stand-alone degrees, the government increases choice and reduces barriers to access quality education for students.
The new changes will also allow colleges and universities to have more autonomy over the curriculum and delivery methods in the class.
“I am delighted to see St. Lawrence College become one of the first colleges to offer a stand-alone nursing degree, independent of a university partner,” Minister Dunlop said.
Previously the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (BScN), offered at St. Lawrence College, was part of the Laurentian Collaborative BScN program. The college is no longer accepting students in this collaborative program; the students who are already enrolled in the program will be the final batch of graduates in the Spring of 2024.
“I want to thank the province for this investment in nursing education and for recognizing the caliber of college nursing programs and faculty,” Vollebregt said.
St. Lawrence College will also seek accreditation from the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN) once the students are in class which is the requirement of CASN accreditation visit to the college.
The Ontario government also recently announced $35 million investment to increase enrolment in nursing education programs in publicly-assisted colleges and universities across the province. Through this investment, SLC will receive up to $876,928 to help increase enrollment in nursing education programs supporting the training of 48 additional practical nursing students and 48 additional Bachelor of Nursing students.