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Monday, July 15, 2024

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After the Trump assassination attempt, defining democracy gets even harder; Trump picks Sen. JD Vance of Ohio, a once-fierce critic turned loyal ally, as his GOP running mate; DC residents push back on natural gas infrastructure build-up a new law allows youth on Medi-Cal to consent to mental health treatment.

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Former President Trump is injured but safe after an attempted assassination many condemn political violence. Democrats' fears intensify over Biden's run. And North Carolina could require proof of citizenship to vote.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

For-profit colleges complicate WI's nursing shortage efforts

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Tuesday, March 5, 2024   

Wisconsin faces a big staffing shortage of registered nurses. Advocates hope for key solutions to bear fruit amid unease about the emergence of for-profit nursing colleges.

The Arizona College of Nursing, a commercial institution, has been trying to gain a foothold in certain Wisconsin cities. It faces scrutiny in other states over regulatory issues and claims that it leaves too many students saddled with debt and no career pathway.

Barbara Nichols, executive director of with the Wisconsin Center for Nursing, has encouraged policymakers to keep building on efforts to help more students attend nonprofit programs to fill staffing voids. She said the trouble is those schools don't have enough instructors.

"You can make more money working as a nurse practitioner with your master's [degree] or doctorate than teaching," Nichols explained.

She hopes to see results from a Wisconsin initiative soon, which started three years ago, that offers loan forgiveness for nurses who take on teaching roles.

When speaking on broader shortage issues, leaders at Arizona College of Nursing argue the educational system should provide better support to these students while they're in school, such as mentorship programs on campus.

Despite the lack of available slots, Nichols encourages aspiring nurses to prioritize schools with an established track record. While obtaining a nursing degree does require some clinical training, she notes there is some flexibility for other required courses.

"Schools have a combination of in-person as well as online, and that's the best. So, I think you need to look for those schools that provide theory in terms of online and then make sure they have good clinical placements," she continued.

Nichols said she feels it's better to wait for an opening at a longstanding, accredited program, arguing they're better suited to provide a quality nursing education. And for students who wouldn't have trouble temporarily relocating, she's convinced it's worth it to explore programs in neighboring states.

According to her organization, Wisconsin is graduating around 3,000 nurses each year, or 2,000 short of what's needed.


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"I truly love our Country, and love you all, and look forward to speaking to our Great Nation this week from Wisconsin," wrote Former President Donald Trump on social media. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

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