LiveWell Blog

Wayne UNC Health Care Partners with University of Mount Olive

Wayne UNC Health Care and the University of Mount Olive (UMO) have entered a strategic partnership that will help qualifying RNs earn their bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree at a discounted rate.

Wayne UNC has made an initial $50,000 investment into the Preferred Employer Tuition Gap Scholarship program. The money will be used to supplement the educational costs of Wayne UNC employees seeking BSN degrees through UMO. Qualifying recipients of the scholarship must have been employed as an RN at Wayne UNC for at least 12 months. Several additional requirements must be met to receive and continue receiving the scholarship fund, chief among those is continuing service with Wayne UNC for a specified time. In addition, UMO will also offer each eligible participant a special Wayne UNC Preferred Employee Tuition rate.

“The goal of the public-private partnership is to increase the number of nurses with a baccalaureate degree in order to create a higher educated workforce able to produce safe, quality care and coverage for all patients,” said Dr. Joy Kieffer, UMO Division Chair and Associate Professor of Nursing.

A study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association revealed that “in hospitals with higher proportions of nurses educated at the baccalaureate level or higher, surgical patients experienced lower mortality and failure-to- rescue rates.”

According to Kieffer, RN to BSN programs give nurses access to higher salaries, career advancement opportunities and sets the foundation for master’s-level education and advanced practice licensure.

“As nurses take on a more critical role in the healthcare industry, our RN to BSN program is designed to help RNs advance their career without missing a beat in their daily lives,” she said. An RN will be able to transfer in most of the credit hours obtained during the associate degree nursing program from the community college. Up to 18 hours of general education credits may be required and up to 36 credit hours of core BSN education.

“Throughout its history, UMO has sought out strategic partnerships in the communities we serve to provide innovative educational opportunities,” said UMO President Dr. Philip P. Kerstetter. “By partnering with Wayne UNC Health Care, we are able to answer a national call for more BSN-educated nurses and make it easier for RNs in Wayne County to obtain an advanced degree.”

“We are pleased to be able to provide our nurses with affordable and convenient access to the RN to BSN program at UMO,” said Donna Wimberly, Senior Vice President of Patient Services and Chief Nursing Officer at Wayne UNC Health Care. “This is an exciting partnership that will benefit not only our nurses, but also the communities we serve by providing a higher percentage of BSN-prepared nurses to care for our patients.”

For more information, contact Dr. Joy Kieffer at jkieffer@umo.edu.

The University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The University, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Research Triangle Park, Washington, Jacksonville, and in Smithfield at Johnston Community College.  For more information, visit www.umo.edu.