New program, event demonstrate appreciation for veterans

Published date: 
Dec 5, 2013

November brings an opportunity to recognize our veterans on a grand scale.  To show student, faculty and staff veterans that GateWay Community College appreciates them, a day-long celebration was held Nov. 5 on campus and a new program specifically designed for veterans was unveiled.  

Veterans Nursing Program
Veterans-LPN Bridge

The Veteran’s Committee who organized  the Nov. 5 events, planned several activities, including a free breakfast (all of which was donated), a community resource fair and an evening Retreat Ceremony, where an alumnus spoke on being a veteran and enrolling as a student at GateWay. More than 200 students, faculty and staff participated in the events.

In addition to the day-long event, a new nursing bridge program was announced for veterans. GateWay became the first community college in the nation to offer a military-civilian nurse track for veterans. The Veterans-LPN bridge program is part of an effort to acknowledge military member's training and experience as they transition into the civilian workforce.

"Arizona is the first state in the country to establish a program like it," said Margi Schultz, Nursing Division chair. "Our goal is to recognize the incredible knowledge our service members have gained while in the military and provide them with additional education so they can employ their skills in the civilian workforce."

GateWay’s program was approved in September 2013 by the Arizona Board of Nursing and is anticipated to be ready to receive students in February 2014

The bridge course will take approximately four months to complete. Students may opt to continue efforts to earn an associate or bachelor's degree in nursing. 

Course work will include didactic, laboratory, and clinical experiences for practical nursing including concepts and theories related to care of geriatric, adult, pediatric and childbearing clients. 

GateWay Community College has been designated as a Military Friendly School for four years in a row. 

"The fact that GateWay has been on the list for four years in a row speaks volumes of our commitment to our active military service members, veterans and their families," said Rachelle Clarke, interim dean of Enrollment Services. "We are honored to have this designation and to be able to provide a learning environment for our veteran community."

Those interested in enrolling in the program can contact Andrea Romo (602.286.8184) or Debbie Cowan (602.286.8119).  Or visit