BUCKHANNON, W.Va. – West Virginia Wesleyan College has been awarded $1,000,000 through West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s Nursing Workforce Expansion Program, which is designed to address the state’s nursing shortage through a multifaceted approach to attract, train, and retain nurses in the Mountain State.
Representing a fundamental part of this approach, an award program was established to fund nursing program expansion projects at colleges, universities, schools of nursing, and career technical education centers across West Virginia.
Through West Virginia Wesleyan College’s award, the School of Nursing plans to invest in state-of-the-art equipment to improve student experiences including technology, lab equipment, and transportation to clinical sites.
The investment is expected to support up to 60 new pre-nursing students at West Virginia Wesleyan as part of the newly announced Nursing Advantage Program The program will include scholarships for first-year nursing students enrolling in Fall of 2022 including funding for books, a laptop, and a first-year scholarship stipend. Students can inquire about eligibility for the Nursing Advantage Program now at www.wvwc.edu.
Dr. James Moore, Interim President, shared his enthusiasm for the program. “We are very excited to receive this generous support from the State of West Virginia and we thank everyone who made this possible. We’ve learned during this pandemic that nurses are among our society’s most important professionals, and Wesleyan nursing students and faculty have been serving on the frontlines of the most challenging period of time we’ve all experienced. This grant will allow us to add more students to our amazing nursing program, and our region will be stronger for having more Wesleyan nursing grads joining the healthcare workforce.”
The nursing program expansion awards are administered by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission and Community and Technical College System. Twenty-six funded projects across the state were announced by Gov. Justice on March 17.
Approved projects were required to be focused on increasing enrollment in pre-licensure nursing programs through innovative approaches focused on timely degree completion and licensure for graduates.
“We are tremendously grateful to Gov. Justice for providing this historic funding to support the expansion of nursing education programs across West Virginia,” said Dr. Sarah Armstrong Tucker, West Virginia’s Chancellor of Higher Education. “Through these new projects, our postsecondary education community will be better positioned to help shore up West Virginia’s nursing workforce – which, in turn, will help support our nurses working tirelessly on the front lines right now.”
Governor Justice announced the West Virginia Nursing Workforce Expansion Program in December 2021 by dedicating $48 million to support new and expanded initiatives that will train new nurses, fully fund the West Virginia Nursing Scholarship Program, value nurses already practicing in the state, and recruit nurses into West Virginia.