|McCann Tech Practical Nursing Program Switching to Day Courses|
|By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff|
03:57AM / Tuesday, July 31, 2018
|McCann nursing students do the ceremonial lighting of candles during graduation exercises. The school is switching from evening to day classes for the 11-month program. |
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — McCann Technical School's Practical Nursing Program will shift from an evening program to a day program.
McCann will be making some changes this upcoming semester to better fit the schedules of students.
"I think it is a good change and a good opportunity to look at the entire program and make some changes," Superintendent James Brosnan said. "It opens it up and more students will be able to apply for the program."
When the program was restarted in 2004, the Advisory Committee recommended that courses be held during the evening to accommodate working students who may only be available at that time but this has changed, he said.
"Over the years, it has been a reversal and students, faculty, alumni, and members of the nursing community felt we would be stronger with a day program," he said. "Initially, the feedback was hold classes in the evening and that will help the job picture, but I think so much has changed in the last 10 years or so."
Earlier this summer, the committee recommended making this change that will align McCann with similar programs. The program starts in January with graduation in November. New class times will be Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.
Brosnan said by holding day courses, students with families can find reliable child care. With fewer options for child care in the evening, many students were unable to apply for the program.
The change will not affect students' clinical assignments and the new schedule will offer a different environment.
"I think it brings a different perspective of nursing during the course of the day because sometimes the assignments in the evening are different than during the day," he said. "I think it will strengthen that clinical piece."
Brosnan said the change would even be more accommodating for some of the instructors.
"They may be working that day and teaching that Friday night. By 9 they are done," he said. "Weather-wise and people driving home late we thought this would be better. We ran that gambit for a few years, but we are seeing more people asking us to consider day courses."
Brosnan said there will be another change in increasing the anatomy and physiology program by 20 hours to meet Vermont nursing standards.
"It more than meets the Massachusetts standards so we are fine with that, but students are interested and or will be working in Vermont because they are right around the corner," he said.
Brosnan added that the school will also have to bring in new leadership to run the program because current director Susan Watson plans to leave her post.
The program has a high National Counsel Licensing Examination for Practical Nurses passing rate and he believes the new schedule will only strengthen an already thriving program.
"Our tests are virtually 100 or 99 percent we get great test results and that is clearly because our faculty has been outstanding since we reopened," he said. "I think this will only enhance the program and open it up to more applicants."