(March 21, 2022) - On March 3, 2022, the College of Nurses of Ontario provided preliminary approval for a new program bridging accreditation for French registered practical nurses seeking to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN). This accreditation will enable diploma holders of Collège Boréal’s Practical Nursing (RPN) program to obtain a BScN from Laurentian University in three rather than the conventional, four years. A shortage of francophone registered nurses in Northern Ontario catalyzed the development of this accreditation.
Laurentian’s French BScN obtained an outstanding seven-year accreditation from the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN); the CASN’s highest honour. Students enrolled benefit from updates to the program that support current and future practices of nursing.
Speaking about the development of this new RPN to RN bridging accreditation that is tailored to the learning needs of RPNs, Dr. Céline Larivière, Dean of Laurentian’s Faculty of Education and Health, said as follows: “French-speaking nurses are required to provide excellent care within our northern and francophone communities. This bridging program will help to address the current shortage of nurses. I wish to thank Dr. Sylvie Larocque and Dr. Anne Marise Lavoie, members of the French BScN program and colleagues from Collège Boréal for their tireless effort to create this bridging program.”
According to Lyne Michaud, Vice-President Academic, Collège Boréal: “Today's students want flexibility more than ever. This agreement will enhance our offerings in terms of student mobility and is consistent with our commitment to be part of the solution to the shortage of qualified, bilingual health care professionals in Ontario. We are proud to be training the next generation of health professionals.”
Educational partnerships between Collège Boréal and Laurentian University are plentiful, and this new bridging accreditation builds on the excellent programming offered by both institutions. Fittingly, this approved accreditation that supports Francophone learners is celebrated during le mois de la francophonie. Notably, RPNs from any approved college program are also eligible to benefit from this new bridging program. RPNs interested in the opportunity to obtain a B.Sc. Nursing degree in three rather than the conventional four years, are encouraged to apply for ongoing studies at Laurentian.
A comprehensive review of this new Programme de baccalauréat en science infirmières en français pour le IAA [programme passerelle] will take place by the College of Nurses of Ontario in the academic year following the first class of graduates.