WILLISTON, N.D. - Many Williston State College nursing program graduates are staying in town to pursue their careers, benefiting the local hospital that has an increasing number of patients.
Job Service North Dakota numbers show that in the Williston area there were 53 fewer job openings in the healthcare, practitioners and technical category from May to June.
Workforce Center Manager Paula Hickel says that has a lot to do with the number of college graduates becoming licensed practical nurses, or leaving LPN positions to become registered nurses at local healthcare facilities.
Hickel said, "Our local providers work closely with the schools to make sure that those graduates have a job waiting for them, and they have someone waiting to fill that position, because we absolutely need those folks here."
In June, Williston's CHI Saint Alexius Hospital filled many of their positions by working with the school. In just the month of July, the facility had 922 Emergency Room, and 2048 outpatient visits.
On Friday, 24 students received their PN certificate from Williston State College. In 2018 and 2019 the total number of WSC nursing program graduates is now 79.