North Dakota Offers Distance Learning for Nurses Spread Across the Rural State

North Dakota L.I.N.C. enrolled a total of 101 students in the program, who were spread across 47,000 square miles. To bring students and schools closer together, North Dakota L.I.N.C. used a variety of distance learning tools, including satellite, interactive video, correspondence courses, e-mail and itinerant professors.

Ladders in Nursing Careers (L.I.N.C.), a national grant program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), was a career advancement and health care work force education national program.

Key Results

  • Enrolled 22 Native American students; Native Americans represented just 1.7 percent of the state's nurses.
  • Became a state leader in distance learning.
  • Partnered with the University of North Dakota's Medstar program (a satellite system that delivers educational programming to the state's hospitals) and North Dakota Blue Cross/Blue Shield to provide students with access to the Internet and the University's library resources.
  • Collaborated with the University of North Dakota RAIN (Recruitment\Retention of Native Americans into Nursing) program, Northwest Technical College, and Little Hoop Community College (a tribal college) to bring a Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) program to northeastern North Dakota via laptop computer.