Middle School Program Promotes Equity in Nursing

Several school nurses in the Brandywine School District (BSD) in Delaware piloted a program to introduce middle school students to a career in nursing in an effort to promote equity in the field and raise awareness of the need for more nurses. A report on the program was published in NASN School Nurse.

Given the racial, ethnic, and gender disparities present in the nursing workforce, researchers sought out Black, Hispanic, and male students, populations that are underrepresented in the nursing field. The researchers then informed the students about nursing and offered information on career pathways. The program’s intent, the investigators noted, is to provide a realistic perspective on the duties of nurses. It also provides educational and collaborative support from parents and faculty members to help the students transition into postsecondary nursing education programs.

“The current nursing shortage is a multifaceted issue creating an extreme need for nurses, particularly baccalaureate-prepared nurses who provide culturally competent and safe patient care. The BSD Lifesavers program aims to create programs and policies to promote a more diverse nursing workforce that will provide equitable health care for all communities,” the researchers concluded.