[Skip to Content]

Upstate College of Nursing awarded SUNY Nursing Emergency Training Fund grant

In a move designed to increase the number of nurses statewide, the Upstate Medical University College of Nursing has been awarded $440,000 aimed at increasing enrollment by supporting new faculty positions and student support staff in addition to strengthening clinical experiences for students. 

The funding comes from a SUNY Nursing Emergency Training Fund, which is designed to support colleges in the hiring of additional faculty, expand training space and purchase equipment and technology.

“New York needs even more nursing heroes, and I am proud that SUNY campuses are making Governor Hochul’s vision a reality,” said SUNY Interim Chancellor Deborah F. Stanley. “I extend my congratulations to our first campus awardees for developing innovative proposals to increase their enrollment capacity. I also thank the Governor and legislators for investing in SUNY and making opportunities like this possible.”

 A key portion of the funding—$250,000—is earmarked to support Upstate’s RN to BS program with Onondaga Community College (OCC). The dual admission program allows students who receive their RN at OCC to easily transfer into Upstate’s bachelor’s degree program in nursing.

“We’re pleased to have SUNY’s support of our RN to BS partnership with Onondaga Community College,” said Dean Tammy Austin-Ketch, PhD. “These funds will be aimed at increasing enrollment by supporting additional program faculty and enhancing clinical opportunities for students.

“Nurses are in demand everywhere, and one way to increase their ranks is to strengthen these pipeline programs,” Austin-Ketch said.

“SUNY Upstate Medical University and its College of Nursing have been amazing partners for our students who earn their associate degrees here, then transfer seamlessly into Upstate’s bachelor’s degree Nursing program,” Onondaga Community College Dean of Health & Community Services Karen Fabrizio, EdD, MBA. “We thank SUNY for recognizing and prioritizing the critical need for nurses, and are excited to collaborate with Upstate’s College of Nursing as we work to solve this problem.”

In addition to funding new faculty positions and student support services and personnel at both schools, the funds also will address the teaching of various issues including rural health, telehealth and addictions. Officials say these additions to the curriculums will ensure students have a higher quality experience, addressing the current trend and issues in nursing.

The funding will also provide for program’s enhanced use of Upstate’s simulation center, an 8,600 square foot facility that allows for recreation of various medical settings with low and high-fidelity task trainers and manikins to simulate various medical conditions, injuries.

The remainder of the funding—$190,000—also earmarked for faculty and student support, will help foster growth in Upstate’s own College of Nursing degree programs, from bachelor’s to numerous graduate nursing degree programs, such as nurse practitioner programs and doctor of nursing practice degree.

One program that will especially benefit from the funding will be the Adult and Geriatric Nurse Practitioner (AGNP) program, which aims to bring more specially trained nurse practitioners to the workforce to care for the state’s aging population. The college already offers nurse practitioner programs for Family Nurse, Family Psychiatric Mental Health and Pediatrics.

Additionally, in response to student focus groups, the college will develop and deploy a modular RN to BS curriculum with seven week semesters and three start dates to facilitate rapid deployment and flexibility of offerings.

The funding will also enhance and expand existing and new pipeline agreements to include rural/underserved communities with target of a fully online asynchronous programs and develop a partnership with Upstate University Hospital’s Nurse Residency Program.

Upstate and OCC are among 17 SUNY schools to receive this special SUNY funding.

Across the nation, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that 11 million additional nurses are needed to avoid further shortages in the healthcare industry, and employment opportunities for nurses are projected to grow at a rate of 15 percent—faster than all other occupations through 2026. According to the American Journal of Medical Quality, there will be a shortage of more than 39,000 registered nurses in New York State by 2030.

Upstate’s College of Nursing is the only nursing program in the region that is part of an academic medical center. It offers a variety of courses and programs online and in hybrid formats for great flexibility for a variety of learners.

For more information on the College of Nursing, go to: https://www.upstate.edu/con/index.php