Partnering with rural communities to meet the demand for a qualified nursing workforce

Mary Cramer, Kathleen Anne Duncan, Mary Megel, Steve Pitkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The registered nurse (RN) shortage threatens rural health care quality and economic vitality. Educational institutions have the opportunity to collaborate with rural communities in building pipelines for a more highly educated, sustainable nursing workforce. Leaders from 19 Midwestern rural counties approached a university about their regional nurse workforce issues and a desire to locate a nursing campus in their community. This article describes the partnership between a university and a rural community and the process for addressing their concerns and determining program feasibility. A Task Force of faculty and community leaders used the Determining Program Feasibility model to frame data collection and analysis. The Task Force met regularly with a Community Advisory Board for problem-solving and formative feedback. The sound methodology and transparent process facilitated a successful collaboration and resulted in a final report outlining the significant opportunities and challenges to overcome. Plans are underway for a new rural nursing campus and the community has raised monies for the new facility. The state legislature will address needed start-up funds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-157
Number of pages10
JournalNursing outlook
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


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