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Nursing students earn healthy marks


For seven years in a row, Cambrian College Practical Nursing graduates were 100% successful in the licensing exams set by the College of Nurses of Ontario.

They also surpassed the provincial averages in all categories of competencies tested, which included comprehension, application, critical thinking, professional, ethical and legal knowledge, and growth and development.

According to Marilyn McKinnon, co-ordinator of Cambrian's Practical Nursing program, the program combines theory with practical workplace experience. As well, it focuses on health promotion and health protection through the assessment of patient needs.

"Today's practical nurses are multi-skilled professionals who are educated to be leaders and to be advocates for patients," McKinnon says .

"Our graduates are working in hospitals and nursing homes, in medical offices, with community nursing agencies, in psychiatric facilities, and in other health care settings. We continuously receive positive feedback from these employers on the skills and professionalism of our students."

In addition to the Practical Nursing program, Cambrian also offers a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.Sc.N.) program.

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Centennial College has received approval from the Ontario government to launch its Bachelor of Applied Information Sciences (B.A.I.Sc.) program in Software Systems Design, Development and Management.

This four-year applied-degree program combines all aspects of software development -- including programming, databases, systems analysis and design -- with skills in business and project management. To help bridge these two disciplines, communication skills are also emphasized in the curriculum.

"It's widely accepted that information technology will be the driving force of our future economy," says Centennial president Richard Johnston.

"Studies point to the need for degree-level graduates who can manage software development projects and communicate effectively. There is no school we know of that is providing this kind of tailored professional training."

The Software Human Resource Council's Software Occupational Skills Profile Model (2001) and the Expert Panel on Skills (2001) identified specific skill sets required by future software professionals, including those with a combination of software development expertise and managerial skills.

Graduates of the program will be eligible for a wide range of industry certifications, in addition to the applied degree from Centennial. The program supports established certifications provided by Java, Oracle and Microsoft.

Students will receive two paid work terms in relevant industry settings during their four years of study. For the final year of the program, students can choose one of three elective streams: Web services programming, wireless programming or IT and management. The program culminates in a unique double-credit 'capstone' project, which requires students to manage a software project from conception to completion.

Centennial's Software Systems Design, Development and Management applied-degree program is scheduled to commence in fall 2003. Tuition for this four-year program has not be announced, but will be similar to a university program.

The college already offers an applied degree in Computer and Communication Networking, a Bachelor of Science Nursing from Ryerson University, and three collaborative degrees with the University of Toronto at Scarborough.

For more details about Centennial's degree-related programs, telephone 416-289-5325, or visit the Web site at www.centennialcollege.ca.


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