LEWISTON, Idaho – Continuing a relationship that stretches back nearly a century, Lewis-Clark State College and St. Joseph Regional Medical Center have renewed their annual agreement to benefit the college’s Nursing & Health Sciences Division and strengthen its goal of providing a pipeline of nursing graduates.
Per the agreement, St. Joe’s will contribute $44,000 this year toward the salary for a nursing instructor at the college. The hospital has provided funds for an instructor position since inception of the agreement more than 20 years ago. The faculty position is in addition to the faculty positions already established at the college, allowing the college’s Bachelor of Science Nursing program to serve additional students.
“Our longstanding relationship with St. Joe’s is a testament to the importance of town and gown community connection,” LC State President Cynthia Pemberton said. “We are incredibly grateful for the position support and the expanded healthcare education opportunities it enables.”
St. Joe’s CEO Tim Trottier shared, “by supporting the nursing program in this way, we are actively contributing to the education of many future nurses. We are proud to support these students and LC State’s remarkable nursing program. This aligns with our mission of ‘Making Communities Healthier.’“
The two parties signed the agreement earlier this fall. The agreement runs through July 31, 2021.
“We have long enjoyed a strong partnership with St. Joe’s,” said Krista Harwick, chair of the LC State Nursing & Health Sciences Division. “The hospital provides clinical opportunities for our nursing and radiographic science students, and hospital staff provide guest lectures for students on various topics. Additionally, LC State nursing faculty provide educational opportunities for St. Joe’s nurses. St. Joe’s also hires many of our nursing and radiographic science graduates.”
The clinical and practicum opportunities for LC State students help exemplify one of the college’s mottos of connecting learning to life. Those opportunities help LC students gain valuable experience and a connection to the area’s largest employer of nurses.
LC State’s highly respected nursing program has a pass rate for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) that annually exceeds the national average. Last year, the pass rate was around 96 percent and has been as high as 100 percent.
St. Joseph’s Auxiliary also provides funding for 1-2 scholarships each year to full-time LC State students in the nursing program.
The college also partners with St. Joe’s to provide oversight and management of Student Health Services at the college. St. Joe’s assumed Student Health Services oversight in the summer of 2018, and the change increased access and quality of care for LC State students as well as improving a student’s ability to use their health insurance coverage. The clinic is located in the Sam Glenn Complex on the LC campus and provides services to LC State students, faculty and staff.
St. Joe’s is a lifetime President’s Circle member at the college, while LC State nursing professor Ella Mae Keatts currently serves as chair of the hospital’s board of trustees. President Pemberton also serves on the hospital’s board.