5,000 Nurses in Ten Years

That’s the estimate of what Rhode Island will need for the health care work force. A new charter school is focused on vocational training…


They are the nurses of the future in a classroom setting that’s unique.

The Rhode Island Nurses Institute Middle College, a new charter school in Providence, opened Monday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“A brand new model that creates a bridge from high school to college, and that’s a very exceptional thing,” said superintendent Robert Pilkington.

The school incorporates grades 10, 11, 12 and something called 12-plus.

“And during that fifth year of high school, the students are dually enrolled. They stay in the high school environment for safety and supportiveness, but they’re challenged with the college curriculum so that when they graduate from our 12-plus year, they’ll be college sophomores,” Pilkington said.

So many students sit in classrooms with no clear idea of how education translates into vocation. These students know that jobs are waiting for them, I wish we could say that to all our youth– give them a sense that they are wanted and needed.

There will inevitably be students who complete this program, and realize that nursing is not for them. What will they have to show for their five years? A solid grounding in math and biological sciences, a habit of thinking of how education can translate into skills that benefit society. They’ll have a head start on college.

I hope Nurses Institute makes time for some liberal arts. You don’t get through a nursing career without something to feed your soul.


7 thoughts on “5,000 Nurses in Ten Years

  1. I know people who went through the “boot camp”nursing program at CCRI and there was little time for extraneous material.
    Re:liberal arts-if you can read,you can educate yourself in that area.
    Not so with science or technology,which certainly includes nursing.
    I’m not degrading the value of liberal arts,just saying that every aspect of medicine has gotten so complex,it’s a full plate every day.

    1. I graduated from CCRI. The good thing is that they prepare you very well to take the boards. Most of the students were older, working, and anxious to get through school asap. I was, and if I had it to do over again I would do it the same way.
      For the long haul, and staying power, a wider education is a benefit. I went to RIC for my bachelors, and had one elective– the only one in all those years I took for pleasure. That was Cathleen Calvert’s writing class and turned out to be a good choice.
      In high school, when the kids have a little more time before the wage pressure really kicks in, there’s time to take some history, English, music, foreign language, art. Might help a nurse keep her sanity down the line.

      1. I think a broad education in literature,poetry,art,etc is always a plus in this life,but I’m just saying it isn’t that hard to get on your own or with the help of a friend or two.
        I personally never saw the need to read Chaucer in Middle English-in my career as an INS Agent I heard a lot of languages-not Middle English though.
        Seriously-nowadays there are so many resources for self-education,one hardly needs a lit lecture from an academic.
        I finished a history major,a criminal justice major(my degree speciality),a zoology minor,and a geography minor.
        I took a panoply of courses-just enough to know what didn’t interest me as well as what did.
        Philosophy and eonomics put me to sleep faster than a CPAP.(Inside baseball for a nurse).
        Sociology too- it was the most inane course I ever sat through-even finite math was better.
        I got a BS degree,but at least I worked for it.

  2. I hope they incorporate labor history too. It’s a shame how little workers today know about it. (We’re having a major Kaiser nursing strike here this week! Among other things, management is trying to reduce nurses’ “capacity to advocate for patients”!)

  3. Our community college has a wonderful nursing program, including radiography, respiratory and physical rehab. They are building a new building just for the medical programs. Our high school needs to get on board with a charter school.
    Way too much money spent on sports…..

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