CNA will pay $200K to transfer students

James McLeod
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A plan to move more than a dozen College of the North Atlantic (CNA) students from Grand Falls-Windsor to St. John’s will cost around $200,000.

The college started a medical laboratory sciences program in central Newfoundland last year, but found that the school’s labs weren’t up to snuff.

Now, it’s unclear what CNA will do, and the program isn’t accepting new students until the school figures the situation out.

“The college assumed that the program could be offered, but when we got into the infrastructure in the building and the federal requirements for accreditation of the program, there was infrastructure to be built, renovated, changed in order to be able to offer programs (which are) federally accredited,” CNA president Ann Marie Vaughan said.

“It came to the point that we couldn’t make the infrastructure work to meet the federal requirements, and the students have got to be our primary concern. We had to move the students because they need to graduate from a program that’s federally accredited.”

The medical lab sciences program was announced as part of a $1.9-million budget commitment from the provincial government in the spring of 2011.

The program accepted students to start studying in the fall of 2011 — the first year was mostly classroom science, without lab work.

Vaughan said CNA believed that a medical lab assistant facility in Grand Falls-Windsor would work to offer the program, but once they started working out the details, it found the lab wasn’t up to federal standards.

“The classroom experience has got to mirror the health-care experience. So you can imagine what amount of detail has got to go into a laboratory for it to simulate what exactly a student would be using in a health-care environment,” she said.

For this year, the 14 students headed into their second year will be moved to St. John’s — at the college’s expense — and no new students will be accepted.

All told, Vaughan said they believe the price tag will be in the range of $200,000.

“We had to shift gears and completely focus in on those students,” Vaughan said.

“We’re not happy about having to move students out of one campus to another.”

Now that the administration has figured out what they’re doing with the students, Vaughan said they’re back to focusing on how to solve the lab situation for the long term.

She said they’ve got a few different options, but there’s no real sense of how much it’ll cost to fix the situation, or what they’ll end up doing.

“I suspect if you ask me in a couple months, we’ll know clearer on that,” she said.

“This gets very complex, and no matter what option we come up with, there’s a large variance in costs.”

Twitter: TelegramJames

Organizations: CNA

Geographic location: Grand Falls-Windsor, Newfoundland

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Recent comments

  • Mel
    August 06, 2012 - 12:08

    JACK, you should really get your facts straight. Ann Marie Vaughn doesn't make all the decisions at CNA, there's a lot more on the go there than anyone knows. Also, I don't think anyone would be 'flocking' to Academy Canada because of the downfall of Medical Laboratory Sciences seeing as Academy Canada is in St. John's/Corner Brook and this program was offered in Grand Falls, the campus that also has said Medical Laboratory Assistant program that is very successful and not very similar as you have wrongly said. Not to mention Academy Canada charges outrages prices for programs not as accredited or recognized as CNA's. Of course all of this was done wrong, and they should have made sure that the campus had the infrastructure first, but as far as I know you can't blame this on Vaughn at all because she was appointed after the program had been planned and placed in Grand Falls and now she is left to clean up the mess of whoever decided to get ahead of themselves and put it there.

  • CNA Alumna - Welder
    July 30, 2012 - 11:41

    Burke and Dunderdale interfere with the running of CNA, appoint people to run it, and the backside falls out of it. This is a lot more than embarassing, this shows you what is wrong with the way things are being done.

  • Dan
    July 30, 2012 - 07:45

    Political interference, CONA would not have created this course in central unless they had pressure from Sullivan et al. Remember the waste of the PC party in the next election ABC in NL makes sense!

  • David
    July 28, 2012 - 21:51

    Rent big bus, $300.

  • Ben
    July 28, 2012 - 18:33

    I guess this is an example of trying to do some things in Rural NL that just cannot be done. I guess if it wasn't attempted the same naysayers would be complaining the other way. Sometimes you don't know what you can, or cannot do, until you try.

  • what next
    July 28, 2012 - 15:50

    and this is the same government that is going to spend Billions on musrat falls. I don't feel so secure anymore.

    • FOOL
      July 29, 2012 - 02:26

      Are you kidding???? LOL... Wasting money on Muskrat Falls... get a clue. You'll eat those words in 10 years...

  • Right Hand Left Hand
    July 28, 2012 - 10:07

    The right hand does not know what the left hand is doing at CNA or Joan Burke's department.

  • Jack
    July 28, 2012 - 08:47

    Due to the recent string of blunders on Anne Marie Vaughan's part, including cuts to in-demand programs, the Qatar civil suit, and now, the Medical Laboratory Sciences program not up to standards, perhaps now is the time for CNA President to face a leadership review and possible dismissal for gross incompetence. In addition, CNA's Medical Laboratory Sciences mistakes could result in students flocking to Academy Canada for its similar program, Medical Laboratory Assistant.