Saint Mary’s University adds nursing program, state-of-the-art classrooms

WINONA, Minn. (WKBT) – There is a need in the workforce for more healthcare workers, specifically in nursing. As a direct response to this identified need, one local university is launching a B.S. in nursing program.

Saint Mary’s University  of Minnesota plans to establish the new four-year program on the Winona Campus in Fall 2021.

According to Dean of Sciences and Health Professions, Dr. Todd Reinhart, with retirements, and the pipeline for students coming up through undergraduate nursing the U.S. may have to produce about 200,000 new nurses every year by 2030.

“We’re very excited to be working on that and working towards the future of not only Saint Mary’s but helping the nursing shortage,” says Dr. Reinhart.

Several clinical agencies from across southern Minnesota and the metro area are collaborating with Saint Mary’s to provide clinical education and a variety of simulation training techniques.

Simulation-based training provides nursing students with opportunities to practice their decision-making skills through different real-life situational experiences, without risking a live patient’s well-being.

Dr. Reinhart says up to 15% of clinical hours could be spent in simulation healthcare provision settings in the state of Minnesota. This kind of training is going to be critical for the nursing program at Saint Mary’s.

“We would like to have every opportunity for our students in our nursing programs to be at the bed-side working with real patients, but simulation allows us to provide scenarios – perhaps – they won’t encounter in their training.”

The addition of nursing is just one way Saint Mary’s is expanding into the healthcare sector.

The university has admitted its second cohort for its 3+2 Physician Assistant (PA) Studies program in collaboration with Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences.

Saint Mary’s M.S. in Nurse Anesthesia program and online bachelor completion RN to BSN program were touted this year as having top earning potential, according to federal data from the U.S. Department of Education.

Students who enroll in Saint Mary’s new nursing program will also be welcomed by a state-of-the art space for learning.

The Adducci Science Center is renovating the Brother Charles and Hoffman halls. There will be additional classrooms and lab spaces for math, psychology, nursing, and computer science students.

The $17 million renovation is expected to wrap up in Fall 2021, all of which are being made possible solely through philanthropic support.