RCC nursing program moving to White City

Grants Pass, Ore.- Pat Higby went to Rogue Community College in Grants Pass back in 1972 and understands how important the nursing program is to the community.

“We need all the medical people here we can get,” Higby said.

She says not only will moving the nursing program to White City make it difficult for residents, it will also go against what she voted for back in 2016.

“When the bond was voted on, it said that the money would be put here in the nursing program for a nursing building here,” she said. “If they go back on their word, how are people in Josephine County suppose to trust them anymore?”

But RCC President Cathy Kemper-Pelle says it’s not that easy. She says the decision came down to what was best for students.

“The building we have is so far short of the square footage we need for our nursing program that it was going to be a cost prohibited remodel because we would have to built a new model or added on to the existing building,” Kemper-Pelle said.

Kemper-Pelle says not only will the nursing program share the same location as the other health care programs the school has to offer but it will also give students a real world experience.

“I think in the long run what we are going to see that the quality of the program, the additional space, the state-of-the-art labs is only going to make it possible for our students to experience what they want in the work place,” she said.”

The one million dollars in bond funds slated for the nursing building back in 2016 will still be used for improvements at the campus.

The school hopes to start classes at the White City location by 2020.

NBC5 News reporter Karen Tang graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in communications and a master’s in journalism.

Before coming to Medford, Karen was an intern at WUSA9 and NBC News Channel in Washington D.C.

During her time in Maryland, Karen was an NCAA Division I student-athlete on the Maryland gymnastics team. She competed against Big Ten universities and made the Big Ten All-Championship team.

When Karen isn’t reporting, she’s at the gym working out, taking pictures with her dog Boomer and searching for the best food in Southern Oregon.

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