05/17/04 — College proud of nursing program

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College proud of nursing program

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on May 17, 2004 1:57 PM

The nursing program at Wayne Community College had what college officials consider exceptional year.

Tara Humphries, public information officer for the college, said 92 percent of the graduates from the associate degree nursing program passed the state licensure exam in 2003.

The national average is 87 percent and the state average is 90 percent, she said.

Of the graduates taking the practical nursing exam, 93 percent passed, well above the national average of 88.2 percent, Ms. Humphries said.

The nursing program also set a different kind of record for the 2003-2004 school year, with six babies born to students in the class this school year and two more due soon. None of the students dropped out, Ms. Humphries said.

"Nursing is one of the most demanding programs," said Rachel Hall, head of Wayne Community College's nursing department, "but obviously it is possible to be in the nursing program at Wayne and have a life outside of school."

The school's nursing students aren't the only ones with high passing rates on the exams required to practice in the field. So did graduates of the college's dental assisting and hygiene programs.

Ms. Humphries said that last year 100 percent of the dental hygiene students passed the National Board Examination.

Dr. Key Albertson, vice president of academic affairs, said, "We require a lot of students in our health-related programs. In return, we make sure they are ready for the real world. They will succeed in their careers."

The pride doesn't stop with its graduates, Ms. Humphries said. One of Wayne Community College's nursing instructors, Caroline Phillips, was a semi-finalist for the N.C. Community College System's 2003 Excellence in Teaching Award.

The Seven Springs resident, an 18-year veteran of teaching and a registered nurse for 35 years, said, "I love what I do because nursing is my love."

College President Edward H. Wilson Jr., said, "It takes the best teachers to make the best students, We have the best at Wayne Community College."