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12/29/2010
Hudson Valley Community College Foundation Receives $25,000 from Stewart's Shops to Increase Number of Nursing Program Graduates

CONTACT: Deborah Renfrew (518) 629-7180, d.renfrew@hvcc.edu
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Wednesday, Dec. 29, 2010

The Hudson Valley Community College Foundation received a $25,000 gift from Stewart's Shops to boost the number of nursing students educated at the college by 32 each year for the next ten years.

Hudson Valley's Nursing program graduates approximately 60 students each year as registered nurses who move into positions at hospitals, extended-care facilities and other health-related settings. In total, approximately 400 students enroll in the Nursing program each year.

The United States is in the midst of a serious shortage of nurses that is expected to intensify at least until 2020 due, in part, to the aging of the "Baby Boomer" generation. The Capital Region is not immune to this crisis and, in fact, is expected to see RN shortages as steep as 26 percent in some areas by 2020, according to UAlbany's Center for Workforce Studies (CWS). The CWS says the shortage of nurses will continue to have a detrimental effect on the quality of health care.

Of the more than 2,500 students who have graduated from Hudson Valley's Nursing program since its inception in 1964, most have pursued careers in the Capital Region. The program has a reputation of excellence, boasting a ten-year average pass rate on the professional licensure exam of 94%. This exceeds New York State's average pass rate of 85% and the national pass rate of 86%. The program is accredited by the National League of Nursing Accrediting Commission.

"This contribution from Stewart's is critical to Hudson Valley Community College as it takes a leadership role in the nationwide effort to expand nursing enrollment levels to meet the rising demand for well-trained graduates," said Ray Kimmelblatt, Chief Development Officer of the Hudson Valley Community College Foundation.

"Stewart's is committed to giving back to all our shops' communities. Educating and enlarging the nurse force certainly makes for a healthier community. We are happy to help Hudson Valley in this mission," said Susan Dake, President of Stewart's Foundation. Stewart's Shops is comprised of 328 shops, a dairy and a distribution plant.

Anyone interested in establishing a scholarship can call the Hudson Valley Community College Foundation at (518) 629-8012 or visit www.hvcc.edu/giving/scholarships.html. The Foundation is a not-for-profit charitable corporation, formed in 1983 to philanthropically support the college's mission. Gifts from alumni, corporations and friends are used to enhance programs, facilities and scholarship opportunities at the college.

Founded in 1953, Hudson Valley Community College offers more than 70 degree and certificate programs in four schools: Business; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Science; and Liberal Arts and Sciences; and an Educational Opportunity Center for academic and career training. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, it has an enrollment of more than 14,000 students, and is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and workforce training. Hudson Valley has more than 65,000 alumni.