Article by Kurt Liedtke, public information officer, Klamath Community College.
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. – Klamath Community College’s recent 100% graduation and state licensure trend for its Registered Nurse (RN) program has continued with its inaugural Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) cohort also passing the state board exam and graduating in full.
The highly competitive KCC Nursing Associate of Applied Science (AAS) program accepts 16 new nursing students annually, eight each for its respective LPN and RN programs, after state approval allowed for the addition of an LPN cohort last year alongside KCC’s long-established RN program.
Students in the KCC nursing program complete a higher number of general education course credits than any other AAS nursing programs in the state of Oregon. The work requirements are high, but so too are expectations, with KCC continuing its 100% graduation rate and state board exam passage, a trend of success of the nursing program for several years in a row.
The consistent overachievement of KCC nursing students is even more impressive this year considering that in 2023 the National Council of State Boards of Nursing drastically changed the format and difficulty of the state board exam, necessitating a retooling of curriculum to properly prepare students for testing.
“I am just really proud that the work and effort the faculty and students put into preparing for the change in state testing requirements paid off, said Allison Sansom, KCC dean of nursing, health and science. “It is really fulfilling to watch students grow and then be successful in their licensure exams and in turn be able to serve our community by providing quality health care.”
In addition to the LPN expansion, KCC earlier this year partnered with Sky Lakes Medical Center to develop a Surgical Technician Program for a planned 2024 launch. This program will provide surgical technologist curriculum accredited by a national organization approved by the Oregon Health Authority, intended for students who meet admission standards and pass a rigorous selection process.
Further expanding the nursing program is a planned RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) undergraduate-level degree program, scheduled to launch in 2025.
Available jobs within health care in the U.S. are projected to grow 13% over the next decade, an increase of an estimated 2 million new jobs, in addition to the 1.9 million openings available each year.
For more information about KCC health care professionals programming visit www.klamathcc.edu.