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Alpena Community College and Saginaw Valley College Univ. Partnership Leads to Bachelor Degree


The long road of fighting to give nursing students a Bachelor of Science Degree in nursing at Alpena Community College has reached the finish line, as a partnership with Saginaw Valley State University was signed Thursday. Dr. Don Macmaster, Alpena Community College President, said, “Yeah, it’s a great feeling. You know, we’ve been at it for years. It’s been a big issue at the state whether community colleges could participate in BSN opportunities.” He said, “There was a lot of work done in the last year by a lot of different people to come up with a compromise that really got to the outcome that we were seeking from the beginning, and that was making BSN’s more accessible and affordable to our local folks.”

Dr. Don Macmaster, Alpena Community College President (Left) & Dr. George Grant Jr, Saginaw Valley State University President (Right)

The momentous day for Alpena Community College was possible through the new partnership with Saginaw Valley State University, and that partnership will have effects far beyond the classroom on ACC’s campus. Dr. George Grant Jr, Saginaw Valley State University President, said, “It’s exciting to be able to partner. One of the things that’s important to us and we’re committed to, as one university, we can have an impact, but when we partner with someone else, you could have a greater impact.” He said, “So when you look at what Alpena Community College is doing, that their impact in a large region, a section of the state of Michigan, and so for us to partner together means we’re gonna make sure that we provide education that people can use for careers, that’s not only going to help their family, but make the community stronger and make the region stronger.”

It wasn’t just the two college presidents excited about the partnership. The few students selected to represent the nursing student body were also excited for the future. Brooke Mckenzie, ACC Nursing Student, said, “Yes, so signing with SVSU is great not only for us locals, but also for anybody. Signing locally gives us the opportunity to stay here and still be with our friends, be with our family, and be with our support system that is needed to go through this four year program.”

Recent graduates also showed support for the future of the program and explained how the effect of receiving and working towards a Bachelor of Science will only help acc nursing students in the long run. Shannon Albrecht, Recent ACC Graduate, said, “Well, I knew the BSN was in the works for a while, and a lot of the hospitals that you’re going to apply to require a BSN within five years, so you never know the timing of when you’re going to start a nursing semester.” She said, “So I started basically in spring, and then you have that whole summer off, and then you graduate in December, so the transition and availability to have that time during the summer can keep that going and make you a better candidate for hire.”