Cong. James McGovern Announces Funding for Becker Nursing Education

Published on Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

Congressman James P. McGovern (D-MA) announced a $540,072 grant by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to support nursing education at Becker College. McGovern made the announcement at an event before students, faculty, and community leaders, on the college’s Sever Street, Worcester campus.

The HRSA grant marks the first time the college has received federal funds and will bolster the nursing department’s efforts to develop additional opportunities for students to enter and advance in the nursing profession.

“Becker College has been a leader in nursing education for 25 years,” said Gerald N. Tuori vice president for institutional advancement. “In order to make an impact on access to nursing education, and to position the college to answer the need for nurses among acute and chronic care providers, Becker has partnered with healthcare providers, other colleges and universities, and Congressman McGovern to support the single largest program at the college and one of the largest nursing programs in Massachusetts.”

“We are looking for innovative solutions that get highly qualified nurses into the workforce,” said Linda Esper, dean of health sciences at Becker. “This support will strengthen the nursing curriculum; enhance the new simulation lab; and provide additional technology to support student success.”

Diane O’Connor, 42, of West Boylston, Mass., is an example of a growing trend in non-traditional nursing students.  “I had an exciting career in marketing for the life sciences industry,” she said. “After I left work to care for my son, I began to re-think my career path.  Would I be remembered as a great marketer?  On my first day as a nursing student at my first clinical site with my first patient, I knew this was what I was meant to do.”

Over the last 10 years, Becker has invested $7 million dollars in facilities and equipment for the nursing programs. The college invests $4.2 million to support nursing education annually and plans to invest $3 million in new equipment and facilities over the next three years.