The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools has given an initial five-year accreditation to Southeast Missouri Hospital's College of Nursing and Health Sciences.
"We are pleased that this respected regional accrediting body has validated the quality of our college as an institution of higher learning," said college president Tonya Buttry, Ph.D., RN. The accreditation process is a lengthy one, Buttry said, noting that the college has been working toward Higher Learning Commission accreditation since the fall of 1998.
Since the college opened in 1991 with 15 students, 402 students have graduated from the College of Nursing and Health Sciences. In May of this year, 53 individuals graduated. Of those desiring immediate employment, 100 percent are employed, Buttry said. Educational opportunities at the college now include an associate degree nursing program with three tracks, a radiologic technology certificate and associate degree program and a surgical technology certificate program.
As the college settles into its new quarters in the Bank of America building on William Street, that growth will continue this fall with an enrollment of 150 students, the largest enrollment to date.
Southeast president James W. Wente said, "As the shortage of qualified nursing and allied health professionals worsens, our college and its educational programs will be of more and more value to health-care providers while at the same time offering employment opportunities to our graduates for years to come."
The North Central Association, formed in 1895, today is a membership organization of colleges and schools in 19 states.