BMCC nursing and dental students pass en masse

PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY CASEY WHITE-ZOLLMAN Janet Lomas, a recent graduate of the dental assisting program at Blue Mountain Community College, is currently working for Dr. Ryan Wieseler at Desert Dental in Hermiston.

The high fives are flowing at Blue Mountain Community College.

Each and every student in BMCC’s Class of 2017 Nursing and Dental Assisting programs passed his or her board examinations on the first try, giving BMCC a 100 percent pass rate in both programs.

All 19 nursing students who graduated in June from the program, passed the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), a standardized exam that every state board of nursing uses to determine whether or not a nursing program graduate is prepared for nursing practice. Graduates must pass the NCLEX to earn a registered nurse license. All 19 graduates passed on the first attempt. Only three of Oregon’s 16 community college nursing programs had a 100 percent pass rate for 2017.

In addition, all nine BMCC dental assisting graduates passed their national board exams. In Oregon, dental assistants are not licensed, but must be certified in order to take x-rays or to perform certain expanded functions. BMCC Dental Assisting graduates have the ability to become certified dental assistants through the Dental Assistant National Board (DANB) by taking three national examinations and one Oregon examination. Employers prefer job candidates with a DANB certification, so those who pass have an edge over other potential candidates.

BMCC’s Nursing program is a member of the Oregon Consortium for Nursing Education, a shared curriculum with Oregon Health Sciences University. BMCC students are co-enrolled with OHSU and offered the same classes at a much lower tuition rate. BMCC graduates can begin working as a nurse immediately, and if desired, may complete one additional year of study online to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from OHSU.

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