Most nursing students have a specific plan for their future. Huntsville's Victor Pile graduates August 6th and is interested in medical missionary work. "I belong to a group, called NAPS, National Association for the Prevention of Starvation. And I've been traveling with them to different parts of the world and throughout the U.S. And now as a nurse I can lend more of a helping hand," said Pile.
Also from Huntsville, Jodi Ewald says she eventually wants to work with newborn babies and their moms. But even before graduation - she's employed. "I've already landed a position at an assisted living home. Most of the patients there have dementia or Alzheimer's. We really just keep them involved with activities."
These are just a couple of the success stories when it comes to graduates. The ability to enter the workforce quickly is just one of the reasons enrollment here is soaring.
"We have increased our number of graduates. I think that number is probably elevated due to the fact that we graduate students twice a year now", says Lynn Hogan, Nursing Department Chairperson.
While the national need is still great for nurses, locally the market is pretty much filled. So many nurses are relocating to other regions.
Opportunities for these future nurses go well beyond hospitals and doctor's offices. "They have nurses in industry in plants, occupational health nursing, many schools have school nurses, and with the increase of special needs children there is that opportunity as well", adds Hogan.