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Creighton University-Phoenix Nursing Students Graduate, Will Help Address Shortage in Healthcare Professionals in Arizona


Creighton University’s Accelerated Nursing Program in Phoenix will honor 49 new graduates in a ceremony on Dec. 18, as the university continues to help address a shortage of healthcare professionals statewide.

Overall, including this class, almost 300 nursing students have graduated over the past four years from the program, and of the 49 students in this graduating class, 22 indicated they will stay in Arizona with several more finalizing their upcoming employment. The graduation ceremony will take place at 2 p.m. on Dec. 18, in the new Creighton University Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Health Sciences Building.

Catherine Todero, PhD, RN, FAAN, Creighton University College of Nursing dean and vice provost of Health Sciences, said the program continues to see steady growth while helping to meet a critical need in Arizona’s healthcare infrastructure.

“We are especially proud of this group of graduates who completed their requirements despite the challenges that COVID-19 presented,” she said. “The graduates partnered with faculty in showing great flexibility in meeting professional competencies through virtual learning and clinical intensives.”

The nursing program moved into its permanent home in the new health sciences building in July of 2021, and will welcome 53 new students for the accelerated program in January 2022.
The breakdown of the new class includes:

  • 10 male students
  • 43 female students
  • 17 students from Arizona
  • 36 students from out of state

Creighton’s innovative Accelerated Nursing Program was launched in 1975, the second program in the country. Students who are accepted into the program must already have a bachelor’s degree in another field and meet certain requirements. The Phoenix program is fully accredited and has approval from the Arizona State Board of Nursing.

Creighton’s new $100 million health sciences campus opened this fall, and will eventually serve nearly 900 students, invigorating Arizona’s health infrastructure with physicians, nurses, pharmacists, physician assistants, physical therapists and occupational therapists — each educated in Creighton’s distinctive Jesuit, Catholic mission of service. Combined with the main Omaha campus, Creighton University is the largest Catholic health professions educator in the nation.

The Greater Phoenix Economic Council estimates Creighton’s expansion will create more than 250 jobs; $124.5 million in personal income; $12 million in tax revenues and more than $300 million in total economic output.

Creighton’s infusion of health care professionals comes at a crucial time for Arizona, which faces both a boom in population and a shortfall in health care professionals.

Creighton is committed to confronting this shortfall, not just by educating more health care professionals in the state, but keeping them there.

About Creighton University: Creighton University, founded in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1878, is one of 27 Jesuit colleges and universities in the U.S. The Omaha campus has more than 8,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students among nine schools and colleges. No other university its size offers students such a comprehensive academic environment with personal attention from faculty-mentors. The new health sciences campus in Phoenix, which will accommodate more than 900 students, is the largest expansion outside of Omaha in Creighton’s history and positions the University as the largest Catholic educator of health professionals in the country. Creighton is ranked in the top third of National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.

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