SUNY Erie and ECMC Team Up for New Nursing Collaboration
Students to receive scholarships, stipends, loan repayments and job guarantees upon graduation, to increase this vital labor pool
BUFFALO, N.Y. — AUG. 16, 2022 — SUNY Erie and Erie County Medical Center (ECMC) have entered into an official agreement that will bring unprecedented support to current and future nursing students. Designed to address the urgent shortage of nurses across Western New York, the collaboration will give students unparalleled financial and educational support, in addition to guaranteed employment upon graduation.
Per the agreement, up to 50 students per year will receive "last-in" scholarships up to $1,500 per year (covering anything that federal, state and other grants do not), and become "Erie County Medical Center Scholars" in the process. Admission is dependent upon qualifying high school grade point averages (GPAs) and Health Education System Inc. (HESI) entrance exam scores.
SUNY Erie works with all students to ensure that available grants are applied to those who are eligible, in addition to state and federal aid as well as available ECC Foundation scholarships. The Buffalo and Erie County Workforce Investment Board Inc. grants eligible to students enrolled in in-demand programs, like Nursing, through the Erie County Health Careers (ECHC) grant, help to enable student success. Students can receive up to $6,000 for programs with less than a two-year duration, and up to $10,000 for those which are two years or longer in length. Furthermore, up to $1,000 is available for books and supplies and up to $12,000 may be given for childcare assistance. ECHC also has an emergency fund to provide students with a one-time payment of up to $500 for things like emergency car repairs or rent payment assistance.
ECMC scholars will also be guaranteed clinical seats throughout their training, given free board exam preparation courses and application fee reimbursement, and employment offers at market-competitive salaries upon graduation.
Additionally, currently enrolled nursing students – as well as those who have begun the program, paused, and now wish to re-enroll to complete their degrees – will be eligible for loan forgiveness upon graduation with a commitment of three to five years of employment at ECMC.
The ECMC Scholars will be taught by ECC faculty and qualified, full-time ECMC nursing employees who serve as adjunct faculty at ECC.
"I want to thank Dr. Balkin for bringing this opportunity to us," said ECMC President & CEO Thomas J. Quatroche, Jr. "Students will be incentivized to enter nursing and eventually work for ECMC, while being provided direct and customized training. As a result, they will be a very prepared cohort of graduates with a high-level of training at our region’s only Level 1 Adult Trauma Center, and the incentives should ensure we’re getting highly motivated and capable candidates."
SUNY Erie has long been recognized among the top institutions in the state for nursing education and preparation. In April of this year, RegisteredNurses.org ranked its City Campus Registered Nurse (RN) program as the second-best in the state.
"SUNY Erie is thrilled to work with ECMC, a regional health services leader, to further enable our remarkable nursing students' track records of success," added SUNY Erie President David Balkin. "This partnership will help alleviate many of the most severe labor shortages in our community, placing SUNY Erie at the forefront of healthcare training leadership and community development."
Erie County Executive, Mark Poloncarz stated, "Strengthening our community’s healthcare system has been a priority for my administration, which is why I invested over $1 million in the Erie County health care grant program. Getting students the supports they need to succeed and move along a career path in health care benefits them, our community, and the healthcare institutions that rely on them for their professional skills. This collaboration between SUNY Erie and ECMC builds on that idea and will place more health care workers where they are most needed. This is a win-win for our community and I thank SUNY Erie President David Balkin and ECMC President & CEO Tom Quatroche for developing this new program."
About SUNY Erie Community College
SUNY Erie offers more than 80 associate degree programs and certificates – including 200+ online courses – to help students start, re-start or enhance their professional lives. With experience-laden instruction from award-winning, terminal-degree-holding and other accomplished educators, and over a dozen transfer articulation agreements in place, SUNY Erie guides students forward, be it to a four-year institution or employment. One of Western New York’s most affordable collegiate options, SUNY Erie provides well over $300,000 in annual scholarships (in addition to federal and state financial aid) to its over 8,000 total students, as well as real-world, hands-on, outside-the-classroom learning alongside students and professionals from various ethnic, geographic and economic backgrounds.
About the Erie County Medical Center (ECMC) Corporation
The ECMC Corporation was established as a New York State Public Benefit Corporation and since 2004 has included an advanced academic medical center with 573 inpatient beds, on- and off-campus health centers, more than 30 outpatient specialty care services and Terrace View, a 390-bed long-term care facility. ECMC is Western New York’s only Level 1 Adult Trauma Center, as well as a regional center for burn care, behavioral health services, transplantation, medical oncology and head & neck cancer care, rehabilitation and a major teaching facility for the University at Buffalo. Most ECMC physicians, dentists and pharmacists are dedicated faculty members of the university and/or members of a private practice plan. More Western New York residents are choosing ECMC for exceptional patient care and patient experiences – the difference between healthcare and true care™. For additional information about ECMC, visit: www.ecmc.edu.