Bachelor's in nursing program coming to Red Wing

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Nursing students looking to turn an associate degree into a bachelor's degree will soon have a local classroom option through a new partnership between Minnesota State College Southeast and Winona State University.

WSU will bring its Bachelor of Science in Nursing completion program to MSC Southeast's Red Wing campus beginning with select online-only courses this fall. Additional courses are expected to start in Red Wing in January 2018.

"I have been told, and many of my staff have been told over the years, that Red Wing has asked for a four-year institution," MSC Southeast President Dorothy Duran said Thursday, Aug. 10, before representatives from both schools signed the partnership agreement. She said collaborating with a cost-effective public institution such as WSU is the best choice for the community.

The completion program is designed to be flexible for working registered nurses. It offers part-time study plans for two, three or four years, and a full-time option for one year.

Enrollment is handled through WSU and courses will be taught by its faculty. The program is already offered in Rochester and La Crescent, Minn.

WSU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Patricia Rogers said she is excited about the expansion and looks forward to seeing more students wearing WSU purple in Red Wing.

"And it's fitting that it starts in nursing, because that is definitely where we have many needs, in nursing and health sciences," Rogers said.

There is a need across the nursing continuum, from licensed practical nurses to the doctorate level, added William McBreen, dean of the WSU College of Nursing and Health Services.

For those who want to take the next step and pursue a bachelor's degree, "we want to make sure that's available to them and available in an efficient manner," McBreen said.

WSU will hold local information sessions about the program later this month and during the fall semester. For more information, visit www.winona.edu/undergrad-nursing/default.asp.