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Colorado Mountain College (CMC) recently received a grant from Johnson & Johnson Foundation via the Johnson & Johnson Center for Health Worker Innovation. The funds will help nurses on Colorado’s Western Slope get the training they need to step into the workplace.

The Rural Nursing Success Fund at the College allows CMC to add virtual simulation modules for nursing students as well as instructors. Additionally, a nursing income share agreement fund was created to provide students with an innovative way to fund their education.

An income share agreement (ISA) is a contract between a financial institution or college and a student. In return for funds covering the student’s educational needs, students agree to share a small portion of their future earnings for a certain period of time after graduation.

The Colorado Mountain College Foundation recently received a major grant from the Johnson & Johnson Foundation. The funds will help nursing students on Colorado’s Western Slope get the training they need to step into the workplace. Image courtesy of CMC

Nurses trained by Colorado Mountain College will be able to participate in an ISA that has no further interest and caps the total repayment at the amount borrowed.

To incentivize students to stay and work in mountain communities, grant funding forgives 25 percent of the student’s total debt for those who stay.  This ISA is available to students enrolled at one of CMC’s nursing programs in Glenwood Springs, Breckenridge, and Steamboat Springs.

CEO of the CMC Foundation, Kristin Heath Colon said “We are honored to collaborate with the Johnson & Johnson Foundation to grow the pipeline of nurses in our mountain communities and give them the tools needed to succeed.”

She continued “We believe CMC is uniquely well-positioned to recruit and educate diverse candidates in a high-need service area, while additionally providing an example of innovative financing that could be replicated in other environments.”

Dean of the School of Nursing, Health Sciences and Public Safety at CMC, Susan Moreland explained  “Access to the virtual simulation products and technical support given by the Johnson & Johnson Foundation is helping to eliminate the barriers our rural students can experience in obtaining clinical hours due to the extensive distances they must travel between our mountain towns. This has never been more necessary than now, with the restrictions COVID-19 has placed on our communities.”

Moreland continued “This funding is playing a key role in our ability to give students exposure to all of the learning modules they need to graduate and quickly get jobs.”