TYLER, Texas — Texas is in the midst of a nurse shortage. To combat this, UT Tyler is working to get qualified nurses into the field as soon as possible.

UT Tyler’s nursing program will now offer classes all year long, allowing more students to join the program and graduate earlier.

According to Barbra Haas, Executive Director of the School of Nursing at UT Tyler, the shortage is due to nursing programs in Texas that fill up quick. With the addition of having classes available in the summer, there will be a 50% increase of spots open in the program. 

"We only have so many spots in our classrooms, we only have so many faculty," Hays said. "We only have so much room on our simulation hospitals in our labs, and our clinical facilities can only accommodate so many students."

The university is hiring more staff to cover the increase in student.

In previous years, only 360 undergraduate students were accepted into the School of Nursing. However, that number will increase to 540 students with the addition of summer classes.

The program lasts for two years. However, if a student wants to graduate early, they now have the freedom to decide if they want to enroll in back-to-back semester courses.

"The program is highly successful. We have a very competitive pass rate on our end," Haas said. "Once they graduate they have to take a national exam before they're licensed, and we generally are in the 93 to 95% range."

For more information about the school of nursing, go to UT Tyler or call the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at (903)-566-7320.