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Bethlehem, Pa., December 9, 2004– Studying abroad isn’t the typical approach to earning a nursing degree, but at Moravian College, it is a viable option. Two universities in Australia are collaborating with Moravian College to offer an effective exchange program designed specifically for both students and registered nurses.
An exchange program with the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, was launched in 1991 by Dr. Janet Askew Sipple, dean of St. Luke’s Hospital School of Nursing and professor of nursing at Moravian College, as an opportunity for registered nurses to expand their studies abroad.
In the summer of 2001, Sipple, who is chairperson of the Moravian College nursing department, and USA Coordinator for the exchange program, integrated College nursing students into the exchange curriculum, allowing Moravian nursing majors to team up with nursing majors at the Southern University of Queensland in Toowoomba. During the summer of 2004, the program was expanded to include the Queensland University of Technology at Brisbane.
Moravian College has hosted 13 students in four years through the nursing exchange program. Ten Moravian students have studied abroad, and additional students are expected to journey to Australia in spring, 2005.
The exchange program is designed to foster relationships between the students and faculty members and to encourage the exchange of expertise and experience.
The nursing systems in both Australia and the United States are based on the United Kingdom’s system. Students are expected to utilize nursing in context for each system as part of the course. Demonstrating the universality of the program and the nursing systems in both countries, students are confronted with the same issues abroad that they struggle with at home, such as health care, insurance, policies, and other differences between the medical communities.
In addition to working hard, the Australian students are encouraged to become active tourists as part of the program. In the U.S., they visited New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and of course, the Christmas City itself, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.