CUMBERLAND — In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and Gov. Larry Hogan’s request, the University of Maryland School of Nursing has approved an early-exit option for students who want to begin working as nursing graduates in an effort to bolster the nursing workforce.
The early-exit option is available to select students in the entry-into-practice Bachelor of Science in Nursing program and clinical nurse leader master’s option who are scheduled to graduate May 14 from the University of Maryland, Baltimore.
To be eligible for the early-exit option, students need to meet specific GPA and academic program requirements.
Hogan’s public health surge plan has called for the addition of up to 6,000 hospital beds across the state, including the reopening of Laurel Hospital as well as a field hospital and alternate care site at the Baltimore Convention Center.
The School of Nursing has collaborated with the chief nursing officers of major hospital systems and ascertained their need for and interest in hiring nursing graduates and designed a protocol for linking students to the University of Maryland Medical System and Johns Hopkins Medicine.
UMSON has 98 BSN and 53 CNL students who are qualified to request an early exit.
“We are very pleased to partner with key Maryland health care systems to support them in meeting their needs for nursing personnel during this incredibly critical time,” said Dean Jane Kirschling.
“The UMSON students opting into our early-exit option are well-prepared and fully equipped to make a major contribution through their service as nursing graduates. I salute those students eligible and willing to serve under this unique initiative. And I applaud all of our students for their dedication and resiliency during this tumultuous time, whether they are persevering in continuing their educational studies under difficult circumstances or are preparing to graduate and serve our larger community.”