There is no cure needed for the bachelor of science nursing program at Cape Breton University as it not only expanded earlier this year but has some students feeling it’s worth the wait to get in.
“CBU has such a great nursing program, I heard about it for years growing up," said Breagh Fitzgerald, a CBU nursing student from Boston, Mass., whose mother is originally from Lingan. “I spent quite a bit of time getting in here.”
Earlier, Fitzgerald had gone on to do three years of biology, knowing in the back of her mind that nursing was what she wanted to do.
“CBU is where I wanted to do it,” she said, adding she also had the opportunity to live with her grandparents while studying here.
“I’m so happy to be here.”
An announcement at CBU Monday celebrated the news of the building of a new $80 million, 80,000 square-foot Centre for Discovery and Innovation. The new building will in part replace a 50-year-old building that was home to the science and technology program. It will also provide much more, including a nursing simulation centre which will support opportunities to allow the nursing program to continue to grow.
“It will include student labs and it will include nursing student experiences,” said Willena Nemeth, director of nursing at CBU.
Back in March, CBU announced an expansion to the nursing program, doubling its seats to 141. Nemeth said the new centre will allow for the demand in their simulators and practise time to be increased with their student demand.
CBU has two nursing labs and within the labs are high tech and some low-tech fidelity simulators.
“It’s also a collaborative research space for our nursing faculty who collaborate with others to do their research,” Nemeth added.
Brandi McMullin is in her final year in the LPN-RN pathway program.
“I’m in the bridge program as I was an LPN for 12 years,” she said.
McMullin said the announcement Monday was great, allowing CBU to build on what they’ve already been doing. Living on an island with an aging population, there is a great need for more nurses.
“It’s great to be able to further your education here, to be able to stay home and to be able to work while I’m doing it is absolutely fabulous,” she said.
Amrinder Singh, president of the CBU Students' Union, said the announcement is exciting and a great step for not only CBU but Cape Breton as a whole.
Singh said CBU is doing a great job providing more facilities and more programs, giving students more reasons to come and stay here.
The main thing that attracts students to CBU is the culture, he said.
“CBU has students from 56 countries, you get to learn about different cultures and get to meet so many people,” Singh said. “It makes CBU different from what other schools have in Nova Scotia and probably all of Canada.”