St. Clair College to begin offering independent nursing degrees

St. Clair College with decorative clock, Windsor main campus. Photo by Mark Brown/Blackburn News.

St. Clair College will join Ontario’s other colleges in offering self-standing nursing programs.

The Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities announced Tuesday that all of the province’s colleges and universities would be able to offer Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) degrees on a stand-alone basis. Since 2000, the province has required colleges offering a nursing program to team up with a university.

St. Clair College President Patti France said this change would help encourage more students to consider nursing as a career since, in many cases, students can complete their training in their hometowns, thus reducing travel and accommodation costs.

“Any policy that creates greater accessibility, convenience and affordability for our students is to be commended, and this decision on the ministry’s part does just that,” France said in a media release. “We also believe it will help to achieve the government’s ultimate goal, namely, to train more nurses for the health-care system, which is calling out for them.”

In the case of St. Clair College, nursing students also attended classes at the University of Windsor. France added that the college’s association with the university has been successful, and both parties are committed to ensuring a smooth transition for students and faculty.

Ross Romano, Ontario’s Minister of Colleges and Universities, said on Tuesday that the change offers more options for students.

“Building Ontario’s economy means ensuring our postsecondary institutions are training students for the jobs of today and the future,” said Romano. “This new pathway for nursing education will offer students greater choice and make it easier for them to pursue rewarding nursing careers.”

According to the release from St. Clair College, Ontario’s colleges already deliver 90 per cent of the required nursing curriculum in the province. Universities provide all of the necessary programming.