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Bridging program to educate nurses expanded

Author: UNB Newsroom

Posted on Nov 18, 2019

Category: UNB Saint John

The Province of New Brunswick has reached 10-year funding agreements with the University of New Brunswick and the Université de Moncton to implement bridging programs for licensed practical nurses (LPNs). The programs help educate LPNs to become registered nurses.

“This commitment builds on our announcement in July, which reintroduced the program at the Saint John campus of UNB,” said Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Trevor Holder. “Training more nurses is key to addressing our current and anticipated nursing shortage. Expanding the size of this program and providing it in four locations around the province, through these two universities, will contribute greatly to reaching our goals.”

The programs will begin in January 2020. UNB will receive $5.3 million to support 24 seats per year in the program offered at its Saint John campus; this includes the $500,000 announced in July to cover the first class of students. The Université de Moncton will receive $5.3 million to provide 25 seats per year; they will be distributed among its campuses in Shippagan, Edmundston and Moncton.

“Our nursing programs are essential to both the health and prosperity of our province and its people,” said UNB president and vice-chancellor Paul J. Mazerolle. “We are pleased with today’s announcement of a 10-year funding agreement to further the LPN bridging program at UNB’s Saint John campus. Providing sustainable solutions for nursing education in New Brunswick is a high priority for UNB. We are committed to collaboration with the Province of New Brunswick across a variety of initiatives, and this agreement signals a step in the right direction.”

“Our bridging program allows eligible LPNs to pursue undergraduate studies in French at the Université de Moncton to become registered nurses,” said Université de Moncton acting president and vice-chancellor Jacques Paul Couturier. “This program shows our commitment to finding solutions to workforce issues in this important field in New Brunswick.”

The bridging program for LPNs combines classroom learning and clinical experience. It is designed to recognize their experience and education while addressing the knowledge and educational differences between LPNs and registered nurses.

The announcement was made simultaneously today in two locations; Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Trevor Holder spoke in Saint John while Tourism, Heritage and Culture Minister Robert Gauvin participated in a news conference in Shippagan.

Details of financial assistance options available to LPNs entering this program are available online.

Promoting and delivering the program is part of the government’s nursing resource strategy. Dependable public health care is one of the government’s key priorities.

Media contact: Heather Campbell