The national nursing shortage is continuing to affect hospitals everywhere.

Local nursing programs are now hoping to help fill the gap as more students graduate from their programs.

Here is more on how these nursing programs are still seeing high numbers.

The nursing shortage has led to burnout in the healthcare field, but now the focus turns to filling the void, which starts with getting more students in nursing programs.

More than 80 nursing students have graduated from Mercyhurst University since December 2021.

The nursing program has not seen a dip in numbers despite the uncertainty that the pandemic has put on the healthcare field.

“Despite the pandemic really taking a toll on the people who are already nurses, I think it still has inspired others to go into nursing to become caregivers and to help you we have health situations like this,” said Travis Lindahl, Director of Graduate and Professional Admissions.

UPMC Jameson School of Nursing at Hamot designed a 16-month accelerated program to get more nurses in the healthcare field.

Even though Jameson School of Nursing is new to the area, they have seen great success in their first class adding to the workforce at UPMC Hamot.

“About 60% of our students have taken jobs at UPMC Hamot and so we’re hoping that they will also take registered nurse positions upon graduation,” said Karen Morahan, Director of UPMC Jameson School of Nursing.

To combat the shortage here locally, keeping students working in Erie is key.

“It has people who are committed to being in one place for a while and making it the best place they can as opposed to coming here for a one to four year education and then leaving,” said Lindahl.

“We need to build up workforce within Erie. The nice thing about the program here at Hamot is we draw students from the community who are going to stay in the community and we take care of the community,” said Morahan.

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Jameson School of Nursing’s first class will be graduating in December and the new class will begin in August. Right now, over 50 students have enrolled.

Open house and information session will be held Wednesday, May 18 at 5 p.m.. at the ECAT building — 650 East Ave. 

The fall 2022 application deadline is extended to July 1.