DEFIANCE - Leaders at Defiance College and Northwest State Community College have announced a partnership that will allow students to get nursing degrees from both institutions in four years.
Dubbed the 1+2+1 nursing program, the partnership of the public and private colleges will allow students to receive an associate's degree from Northwest State and a bachelor's degree from Defiance.
Students will take their first year at Defiance with education and nursing courses, then take years two and three at Northwest State, going through the college's associate's degree program in nursing.
After completing that program and getting their registered nurse licensure, the students will complete their final year at Defiance for the bachelor's degree.
"It's highly desirable now for nursing because it is the pathway for promotion and specialization," Defiance President Gerald Wood said of the bachelor's degree.
The partnership allows Defiance to offer a nursing program without the expense of starting from scratch and Northwest State can expand the number of students it serves, Mr. Wood said.
"Nursing programs are very expensive and this collaboration allowed both of us to use resources already available," he said.
Northwest State President Thomas Stuckey said the colleges are excited about the collaboration, which is the first between the institutions that are about 14 miles apart.
"We're only a few miles apart and we serve a lot of the same population," Mr. Stuckey said, adding that the nine hospitals serving the regional area also support the collaboration.
"With the cooperation of the local hospitals, [the students] will be connected right into employment here in northwest Ohio," Mr. Stuckey said.
Plans call for students to begin enrolling in the program this fall.