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Averett Joins Forces with DRMC and DCC to Grow Viable Healthcare Workforce in the Region

July 26, 2013

Danville Regional Medical Center (DRMC), Averett University and Danville Community College (DCC) announced today a regional collaboration which will provide current and future registered nurses (RN's) a seamless pathway in advancing their professional careers.

DRMC and LifePoint Hospitals recently pledged $360,000 to Averett's nursing program over the next five years, to provide a total of 36 scholarships ($10,000 each) for DRMC RN's who wish to pursue a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree at Averett. In 2011, DRMC and LifePoint Hospitals also pledged $500,000 (over three years) to Averett's health sciences initiatives, which supported the development of the RN to BSN program.

"We are grateful to partner with other organizations in the community for the greater good of Southern Virginia, and Averett University is proud to work in partnership with Danville Regional Medical Center and Danville Community College to give current and aspiring nurses a pathway for career advancement," said Averett President Dr. Tiffany Franks. "The Averett community is excited to welcome registered nurses this fall from DRMC and students from DCC to Averett as we help them pursue their dreams of a bachelor of science in nursing degree."

"The Virginia Health Reform Commission has projected a shortage of nearly 23,000 nurses by the year 2020," said Eric Deaton, chief executive officer at DRMC. "We believe investing in the future of our own registered nurses – DRMC RN's who wish to pursue a BSN – will help to ease this shortfall; more importantly, we believe providing these scholarships will improve the quality of life and health throughout our region."

"The needs of our patients continue to grow more complex," said Debra Clark, DRMC chief nursing officer. "Nurses must be prepared to better serve the needs of the patient not only today, but well into the future. Providing these scholarships will certainly help to do that."

Averett and DCC also announced an expanded partnership where graduates of DCC's RN program who earn an associate in applied science degree and meet certain grade point average (GPA) requirements will automatically be accepted into Averett's BSN program. In addition to graduating with a specific GPA, students will have to achieve a grade of "B" or better on specific courses such as introduction to biology, anatomy and physiology and microbiology while at DCC.

"DCC has a long-standing relationship with Averett in providing a smooth transition for transfer," said Dr. Carlyle Ramsey, DCC president. "This new RN to BSN agreement will be a win-win for DCC nursing graduates who wish to remain in our region while pursuing a bachelor of science degree in nursing."