Premier Doug Ford is seen wearing a blue surgical mask and black suit at photo op. Natalia Kusendova is seen in the background.

“It’s always great to be back right here at home in Etobicoke, at Humber College,” said Premier Doug Ford on Tuesday.

A little more than a year after the initial policy change allowing colleges to apply to offer standalone nursing degrees, Humber welcomed Premier Ford back to the North Campus on Tuesday.  

He was on site to tour the newly remodeled clinical learning laboratory and announce Humber’s independent nursing degree, which launches this Fall – one of the first in the college sector. 

“There’s no question our nurses are world class. In the last year since the COVID-19 pandemic began, nurses have shown how absolutely vital they are to our healthcare system,” said Premier Ford. 

Ross Romano and a Nursing instructor watch as a student in blue scrubs tends to a mannequin in a simulation“I applaud the President and CEO of Humber, Chris Whitaker, for his leadership as Humber blazes a trail for the benefit of everyone in Ontario... I couldn’t be more pleased and prouder of what this program means for our hospitals, long-term care homes, public health units and everyone in Ontario. This will change the face of healthcare in our province for years to come.” 
Ford was joined by Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities, as well as Minister Kinga Surma and MPPs Christine Hogarth and Natalia Kusendova. 

“We are so excited to be here today at Humber College again to announce that as of March 4, 2021, Humber College has officially been designated by the government and the Ontario Colleges of Nurses of Ontario to offer standalone nursing programs,” said Minister Romano. “I’d like to congratulate them on being one of the first Ontario colleges to offer a full four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, independent of a university partner. This will be an exciting step as you welcome the inaugural cohort of students this coming September.”  

Humber has a long history of delivering high-quality nursing education. The college’s nursing program was previously run in collaboration with the University of New Brunswick, successfully for more than 20 years. 

“This degree will prepare students for healthcare careers through our signature polytechnic mix of career-focused theory and hands-on learning,” said Chris Whitaker, president and CEO, Humber College.  

“I want to be a part of it” 

A Humber Nursing student tends to a mannequin in a hospital bed as two local MPs look onSecond-year nursing student Sofiia Danysh was part of the visit and knows how important it is to have qualified healthcare professionals with a good knowledge base to care for the diverse Ontario population, especially now during the pandemic. 

“Humber teaches us how to provide patient focused care that takes into consideration physical and mental health and is adapted for different populations,” said Danysh. 

Danysh and a few fellow nursing students had the opportunity to showcase the clinical, communication and patient care skills they have developed in the simulated patient care suites during the visit. 

Ugo Ezeh, who was also present, is in her second year of nursing at Humber and says she can’t wait to become a frontline worker. 

“I am excited to go into nursing. Healthcare workers are heroes and I want to be a part of it. I want to give what I can to make people feel better.” 

More information about Humber’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing is available here.