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Rochester nursing graduates with program coordinator Linda Herrick.

The U's first Rochester nursing graduates with program coordinator Linda Herrick, second from left, at the commencement ceremony in Minneapolis.

First U nursing students graduate from Rochester

By Gayla Marty

Published on July 15, 2004

More than a million new and replacement nurses will be needed by 2012, according to the latest projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. At the same time, the number of people going into nursing is on the decline. The number of first-time, U.S.-educated nursing school graduates who sat for the national licensure examination for registered nurses decreased by 20 percent from 1995 to 2003.

The University of Minnesota's School of Nursing is doing its best to reverse that trend. Last month, 102 students graduated from the school and 12 of them were from the Rochester campus--the first students from the new satellite program. When Rochester's program reaches capacity next year, it will enroll a total of 90 sophomores, juniors, and seniors, who will get their clinical experience in Rochester-area facilities, including the hospitals of the Mayo Clinic.

The world's oldest continuing university-based school of nursing, the U regularly ranks first or second in the state in the number of nurses it graduates with B.S.N. (bachelor of science in nursing) degrees.

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