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RN program now available at Newton DMACC campus

Published: Friday, Sept. 6, 2013 11:55 a.m. CST • Updated: Friday, Sept. 6, 2013 12:30 p.m. CST
(Ty Rushing/Daily News)
Second year nursing students taking a test on Wednesday in one of classrooms used for nursing instruction. The second year students helped in getting the RN program added to the Newton campus.

The students asked for it, and the administrators of the Newton DMACC Campus listened. Students can now complete the associate nursing degree program in Newton and become RNs. Previously, students could only do their first year in Newton and would have to transfer to another campus to finish.

Program Director/ Nursing Instructor Steve Orazem provided information on the addition.

“Newton is kind of on the eastern edge of DMACC’s district,” Orazem said. “We already have one in Ankeny, Boone, Urban campus and Carroll, but nothing on the eastern side of the district. This is a way of offering our whole nursing program, LPN and RN, on the eastern side of the district. (We’re helping) people not to have to commute and just making it more accessible to people.”

There are currently 24 first-year students and 16 second-year students who are utilizing the program. Orazem said the second-year students helped launch the program, which was slated to start in 2014, this year.

“I think we kind of recognized we had some good students,” Orazem said. “They were very motivated to continue their nursing education in Newton. They were kind of the ideal group to start with. A lot of people were involved and working together to pull this off this year.”

There are four instructors at the Newton campus, and students do traditional classroom work, labs and clinical practice with real people. Clinicals are done at Skiff Medical Center and other medical facilities in the region.

In addition to his students demands, Orazem said DMAAC has a waiting list for the program, and the profession is in high demand.

“DMACC has had a waiting list to get in the nursing program for quite a few years,” Orazem said. “Sometimes, I’ve heard stories about people waiting like two years to get in the nursing program. This is kind of a way of increasing capacity so we can get more students into the program and more students graduated.”

“(We are) meeting a need for more nurses, and it would mean people wouldn’t have to sit on that waiting list that long,” he said.

For the program applications visit.

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