UTICA, NY (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – On Wednesday, May 18th, SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) and Jefferson Community College (JCC) in Watertown announced that they have received a grant of $125,000 for the improvement and development of several of their RN and nursing degree programs.

“This award is a testament to SUNY Poly’s targeted approach toward providing students with the highly relevant skills and opportunities they need to find success and meet today’s challenges. I am grateful for the work of SUNY Poly’s College of Health Sciences faculty and Interim Dean Dr. Joanne Joseph, in addition to our partnership with SUNY Jefferson, that will help drive higher enrollment in nursing programs and, as a result, support and even more robust healthcare system in New York State.” – SUNY Polytechnic Institute Acting President Dr. Tod A. Laursen

A $250,000 regional package was awarded to SUNY Poly and JCC by the state for their Registered Nurse, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, and Doctor of Nursing Practice programs with the goal of improving retention rate percentages and creating a way for RNs to pursue a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Doctorate Degree. The grant is part of a larger $3.2M million award announced by SUNY being distributed to 17 campuses for 1,500 additional nursing students. SUNY estimates this will increase enrollment by 12 percent with another $1.6 million planned for further enrollment expansions for the nursing programs in the future.

“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.”

College and program coordinators say these initiatives will not only strengthen RN pipelines throughout the Central New York and Mohawk Valley region but will also supply labs with new equipment, create large workspaces, and create more qualified nurses now and in the future.